Best Vis­tas

The top spots to take in San Fran­cisco's strik­ing land­scape.

Where San Francisco - - Contents - BY ZACHARY CLARK

San Fran­cisco’s 50-plus hills and the van­tage points they pro­vide are among the city’s most defin­ing fea­tures. Just about any­where high up around here of­fers post­card-wor­thy panora­mas. Here are some of the best vista points in town.

TWIN PEAKS

The city’s most fa­mous look­out, Twin Peaks re­ally is a must- visit. The en­tire city is laid out be­fore you, from the top of the Golden Gate Bridge to the south­ern coast and across the wa­ter to the East Bay. Take a walk along the pedes­trian- only eastern por­tion of Twin Peaks Boule­vard for a va­ri­ety of per­spec­tives.

BILLY GOAT HILL

This small green space tucked into a hill on the bor­der of Noe Val­ley and Glen Park of­fers a long- dis­tance view of the down­town skyscrap­ers that ex­tends south to Ber­nal Hill. On clear days, you can see the East Bay.

TOP OF THE MARK

Lo­cated on the 19th floor of the Mark Hop­kins ho­tel on Nob Hill, Top of the Mark is a swanky cock­tail lounge and res­tau­rant with 360- de­gree views of down­town San Fran­cisco, the Bay and Golden Gate Bridge.

TANK HILL

A hid­den gem, the view at Tank Hill cap­tures as much of the city as the view from Twin Peaks, but with­out the tourists. Even on nice days, you may well have the park to your­self.

HAWK HILL

Just across the bay in the Marin Head­lands, the drive up to Hawk Hill fea­tures a series of look­outs

with ar­guably the best views of the Golden Gate Bridge. The panorama in­cludes the mouth of the bay and the city sky­line be­yond the bridge.

CORONA HEIGHTS PARK

This peak above the Cas­tro neigh­bor­hood of­fers a view of down­town on par with Twin Peaks. You’ll see city streets that ex­tend all the way to the bay, and to your right is an iconic San Fran­cisco im­age: hills cov­ered with in­nu­mer­able pas­tel- col­ored houses.

THE VIEW LOUNGE

On the 39th floor of the Mar­riott ho­tel, the View Lounge is sur­rounded by floor-to- ceil­ing win­dows through which you can see al­most the en­tire city, bay and be­yond.

MOUNT DAVID­SON

This is the city’s high­est peak, over­look­ing Twin Peaks, Sutro Tower and down­town skyscrap­ers, with the Mi­raloma and Noe Val­ley neigh­bor­hoods in the fore­ground.

BER­NAL HILL

The panorama from Ber­nal Heights sum­mit ex­tends from Twin Peaks to the East Bay, with the city’s main ar­ter­ies of Mar­ket and Mis­sion streets run­ning di­rectly from the base of the hill to down­town. The south­ern edge of the hill of­fers views of the tightly packed Ber­nal Heights neigh­bor­hood.

GRAND­VIEW PARK

Be­gin your as­cent at the tiled steps on Mor­aga Steet and 16th Av­enue, a col­or­ful mo­saic that flows the­mat­i­cally from sea to stars. If you con­tinue a block be­yond the top of the stair­case to Grand­view Park (also known as Tur­tle Hill), you’ll be treated to a 360- de­gree view that in­cludes the Sun­set neigh­bor­hood, Pa­cific Ocean and Golden Gate Park.

SUTRO HEIGHTS PARK

Lo­cated above the Cliff House res­tau­rant, Sutro Heights Park is al­most a stones throw from the Pa­cific Ocean. From the top, you can see down the en­tire length of Ocean Beach, which is flanked by Sun­set District homes and the crash­ing waves.

TREA­SURE IS­LAND

This small is­land in the mid­dle of the bay sits di­rectly across from San Fran­cisco’s north­ern water­front, which is es­pe­cially bril­liant at night. Be sure to look north for a close- up of the Bay Bridge’s new eastern span.

PA­CIFIC OVER­LOOK

Sit­u­ated di­rectly be­hind the Golden Gate Bridge, you’ll rec­og­nize the views here from pho­to­graphs. Climb the World War II bunkers for the best views of the mouth of the bay.

BUENA VISTA PARK

Lo­cated above the Haight-Ash­bury neigh­bor­hood and sur­rounded by stately Vic­to­rian homes, Buena Vista Park of­fers views of the Golden Gate Bridge, bay and down­town framed by the park’s huge live oak trees.

Pa­cific Over­look

Top of the Mark

Twin Peaks

Hawk Hill

Grand­view Park

Hawk Hill

Twin Peaks

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