Golden Gate Park Nature & Culture Walking Tour

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1.5 hours

Max 10

Why take this tour?

San Francisco’s Golden Gark Park is an immense (the largest urban park in the United States) green space filled with flora and fauna, characters and stories as dynamic as the City by the Bay. On this expertly guided walking tour get to know the history and culture of San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park. Stoll through the eastern end of the park in the company of a local who will reveal why these 1,017 acres of greenspace reflects the urban landscape and cultural diversity of San Francisco itself.

Highlights

  • Created with Sketch.Take a stroll in Golden Gate Park through nature with insights from an expert local guide
  • Created with Sketch.Hear the impressive, touching story of John McLaren and honor the work he did to turn sand dunes into an incredible green space
  • Created with Sketch.Learn about the various statues in the park and why they were chosen
  • Created with Sketch.Head over to the Academy of Science and DeYoung museum to discuss its peculiar architecture
  • Created with Sketch.End your tour surrounded near other sites to explore after the tour including the Academy of Science, DeYoung Museum, Japanese Tea Garden, and Botanical Gardens

Pristine acres of urban greenspace ready to be appreciated and explored

When John McLaren was designing Golden Gate Park he had but one rule - no where, at any time would there ever be a sign stating, “Keep off the grass!”. Over the course of his 53 year stint as San Francisco’s Park Superintendent, the adamant horticulturist Mr. McLaren turned 1,017 acres of sand dunes into the city of San Francisco’s most beloved open air green space. Friends with another famed nature-lover John Muir, McLaren executed big plans for the park that would one day be a reprieve for millions of locals and visitors alike.

On this incredible locally-led walking tour, discover the secrets to Golden Gate Park as you stroll - starting from the home at the entrance of the park once occ...

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When John McLaren was designing Golden Gate Park he had but one rule - no where, at any time would there ever be a sign stating, “Keep off the grass!”. Over the course of his 53 year stint as San Francisco’s Park Superintendent, the adamant horticulturist Mr. McLaren turned 1,017 acres of sand dunes into the city of San Francisco’s most beloved open air green space. Friends with another famed nature-lover John Muir, McLaren executed big plans for the park that would one day be a reprieve for millions of locals and visitors alike.

On this incredible locally-led walking tour, discover the secrets to Golden Gate Park as you stroll - starting from the home at the entrance of the park once occupied by John McLaren into the Titans of culture and science at the DeYoung Museum and Academy of Science. Stand before the Conservatory of Flowers, a pristine greenhouse of Victorian architecture. Learn a bit about how it came to San Francisco and was erected to hold an array of rare tropical finds and breathtaking blossoms hailing from across the globe. Today the Conservatory is the oldest remaining wooden conservatory in the United States and has been honored on the list of National Register of Historic Places.

Keep on the move toward the Musical Concourse, first stopping at a memorial statue of Mr. McLaren and find out why he hated it and what he did to conceal its presence in Golden Gate Park. While we are talking about statues, see the varied monuments to Goethe, Marx, and Beethoven and learn why these are erected here in the park.

After you reach the concourse, your guide will circumvent the area to discuss how each building contributes to the vision of McLaren and reveal all the tips, tricks, and secrets to spending an incredible “locals” day in Golden Gate Park. End the tour surrounded by sites to explore on your own - pop into the Japanese Tea Garden, head to the Botanical Gardens, or grab a ticket to the Academy of Sciences, or DeYoung Museum.

This tour is an excellent way to get to know San Francisco a bit better for locals, a relaxing time for nature lovers and visitors, or anyone who appreciates the triumphs between man, woman, and nature.

  • Sites Visited
  • McLaren Lodge
  • Conservatory of Flowers
  • John McLaren Rhododendron Dell
  • DeYoung Museum
  • Academy of Sciences
  • Japanese Tea Garden
  • Musical Concourse
  • Tour Includes
  • Local English-speaking guide
  • Expertly guided walking tour

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