If you’re heading to San Francisco, no doubt you’ll be planning to make a bee-line for The Golden Gate Bridge! It’s one of, if not THE, San Francisco landmark you can’t miss on your visit to California, but did you know the bridge can be enjoyed from a number of different angles, vantage points and modes of transport (including on foot!).
Here’s our list of our favourite ways to visit the Golden Gate Bridge…
1. From the air
One of the best ways to understand the scale and beauty of the Golden Gate Bridge is by seeing it from high up as you zoom over San Francisco in this exhilarating 15-20-minute helicopter tour. Fly over AND under (weather permitting!) this iconic landmark as you take in spontaneous narration from your experienced pilot, as well as a relaxing musical soundtrack. If 15-20 minutes isn’t going to cut it for you, extend your helicopter flight and include a trip over the notorious Alcatraz island as well.
2. On foot
If you’re feeling fit, pedestrians are allowed on the bridge so you can take a walk across it if you’d prefer to keep your feet on the ground. Bear in mind that going there and back is a round trip of 3 miles, but intrepid hikers will be rewarded with more time to enjoy the sights and sounds of the view from the bridge itself.
3. By bike
One of our favourite ways to explore the bridge and the surrounding area is by bike, especially on a warm sunny Californian day! Bike rentals start from as little as £23 a day, but it’s worth upgrading your rental to include a ferry ticket to the beautiful town of Sausalito where you enjoy plenty of photo opportunities, art galleries and delicious food (which you’ll deserve after the bike ride over!). If you’d prefer to join a tour, there’s a 2-3 hour, 12-mile tour taking in the sights of the Golden Gate bridge which would fit the bill perfectly.
4. By boat
Sail straight under the Golden Gate Bridge on the Golden Gate Bay Sightseeing Cruise and take in the staggering 4,200-foot span of San Francisco’s greatest landmark. As well as this stunning sight of the bridge, you’ll also take in views of the historic Fisherman’s Wharf, Golden Gate Park, San Francisco National Maritime Park, Angel Island and close-up views of the infamous Alcatraz Island, the former prison which was home to some of America’s most notorious criminals.
5. By bus
Sit back, relax and take in the views from the top deck of an open-top hop-on-hop-off bus as you speed along the length of the Golden Gate Bridge in the company of an experienced tour guide who will be happy to point out all the sights of San Francisco as you go by. There are plenty of other points to explore on the bus as well, including the Opera House, Union Square and China Town – so make sure you take advantage of all the stops! Make the most of your ticket and combine it with a boat and bike rental too!
6. From the shore
If you’re on a budget, you can still take in a great view of the bridge from the banks of the river. Try and time it so you arrive at the North or South Vista point at sun rise or sun set for stunning pictures that will create amazing memories for life. If you do have a bike or you’re driving, there’s plenty of parking and spots to park your bike too.
To explore the Golden Gate Bridge and more of San Francisco's world-famous attractions, click here.
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