Join the One free Walking Tour You’d Ever Need in San Francisco!
Starts: 10 am
Starting point: Union Square, at the corner of Post and Powell streets. Look for the orange flag! Click here for Google Maps location.
Ends: 12:30 pm at Embarcadero, opposite Ferry Building. Click here for Google Maps location.
No reservations needed. Show up in Union Square, corner of Post and Powell Streets every day at 10 am rain or shine. You can still make a booking If you want just for your assurance (below)
The tour follows the Free Tour concept famous all over the world. You get a tour guide that knows a lot about the city and walks with you as you would walk with a friend. We are not financed or supported by any entity. Our tour guides make their income solely off of the donations given by the people visiting their tour.
The tour takes 2 and a half hours and it covers most of downtown San Francisco: Union Square, Chinatown, Financial District, and Embarcadero. It’s more fun facts and relaxed conversations than actual walking so you’d never get tired or bored. We’d be telling stories about places, people, historic events and current affairs; buried ships under the buildings, influential women, gold-diggers and earthquakes.
We visit Union Square, Maiden Lane, Grant Avenue, Dragon Gate, Golden Gate Chinese Cookie Factory, Ross Lane, Portsmouth Square, Transamerica Pyramid, Embarcadero and many more non-touristic points along the way.
The tour ends opposite Ferry Building from where you can take a walk to Pier 39 and the sea lions. It takes 20 minutes by foot to catch the ferry to Alcatraz.
Price: Pay-as-you -wish to the guide. All guides are volunteers and not paid by the City Government or any other institution. We appreciate your tips to keep this tour running!
Check when we are on.
The tour ends opposite Ferry Building. It takes 20 minutes by foot (or less) to reach Pier 33 where you board the ferry to Alcatraz.
Yes, the tour is child-friendly. Children of all ages love the stories of buried ships under the buildings. Babies in strollers or carries are welcome too.
Yes, we have dogs on tours all the time:) Just make sure your pet is securely leashed.
From SFO airport the closest BART station to Union Square is the Powell Street station. Catch the train going in the direction of San Francisco. It will be about a 30-minute ride to the Powell Street station. From there, it is only a 7-10 minute walk up Powell Street to Union Square where the Free SF Tour starts.
From OAK airport to Union Square it takes about 45 minutes on the BART. After your arrival, go to the BART station going direction Oakland Coliseum (OAC). There you change to direction San Francisco / Daily City. The closest BART station to Union Square is the Powell Street Station. From there, it is only a 7-10 minute walk up Powell Street to Union Square where the Free SF Tour starts. To return to OAK, take a Berryessa or Dublin/Pleasanton-bound train to the Coliseum station and go upstairs to transfer to an OAK train at Platform 3.
Yes, we make a bathroom/toilet stop halfway through the route. No worries!
From experience, the average donation is $10 per person. Some people donate less, others are happy to give more. Remember, it’s all up to you: if you have had a good time, tip the guide. If you didn’t like the tour – well, don’t.
No. The Free SF Tour happens rain or shine. Plus, it’s San Francisco – one minute it’s raining, the next you are enjoying glorious sunshine. Bring layers and nevermind the weather.
Of course the tour will happen! It’s just going to feel like a private tour with a knowledgeable, friendly guide all to yourself 🙂
It's a bit tight with parking spaces around Union Square, but you can still get lucky and park in the street. Alternatively, there are many convenient car parks in the Union Square vicinity. There’s an underground garage just under Union Square – you can’t get closer than that 🙂 Most charge around $6 per hour but you can find places for as low as $3-3.50. Check out this list of garages http://www.visitunionsquaresf.com/maps-parking-transportation (just click on "park" under the map).
Yes! The route is wheelchair- and stroller-friendly, and largely step-free. Despite the city’s famously hilly terrain, our tour is makes the most of flat streets in Downtown. There might be a ramp here and there, but nothing to worry about.
There are cashless options, yes. While we don't take credit cards directly, Paypal transfers are available. Also, Venmo app is growing in popularity among travelers.
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