With California set to reopen June 15th, travelers may be curious as to what attractions are currently open in the Golden State. Those traveling with children might have added questions about activities that will keep the whole family entertained, especially after a year of limited travel possibilities. For San Francisco at least, look no further. Here are 10 great family-friendly things to do on your next trip to the city.
1. San Francisco Zoo and Gardens
Take a walk on the wild side with a trip to the San Francisco Zoo and Gardens. The Zoo is home to a wide variety of animals. Families will also love experiencing The Fisher Family Children’s Zoo. This large exhibit is geared towards providing children with up-close and educational fun. After a period of closure, San Francisco Zoo and Gardens has once again opened its gates to the public. Timed reservations, along with face coverings for guests over the age of two, are currently required.
2. Museum of 3D Illusions
The word museum might bring to mind expensive art and glass boxes preventing interaction, but the Museum of 3D Illusions turns that notion on its head. A fully interactive museum, exhibits consist of mind-boggling optical illusions. Those looking for some silly or memorable pictures will also enjoy this option – the museum encourages visitors to take photos. Face coverings are currently required in the museum, and temperature checks are being used to ensure the health of guests and employees.
3. California Academy of Sciences
California Academy of Sciences offers fun with a side of education. The Academy features several jaw-dropping exhibits. Such exhibits include the Steinhart Aquarium, which is home to almost 40,000 animals, and the Osher Rainforest, a 4-story indoor habitat that guests can traverse. Timed-entry tickets are available for purchase, with separate timed reservations also needed for some of the exhibits such as the Osher Rainforest. Face coverings are required inside the Academy.
4. Golden Gate Park
Looking to get some fresh air? Check out Golden Gate Park! Consisting of over 1,000 acres of land, Golden Gate Park is home to a variety of attractions your family is sure to love. Sports lovers can choose from a variety of facilities, including a golf course, tennis courts, and basketball courts. Those looking for some peaceful serenity, or gorgeous flowers, will love the various gardens throughout the park, including the historic Conservatory of Flowers.
5. Aquarium of The Bay
The Aquarium of the Bay is a great way to get an up-close look at some of the marvelous animals that inhabit our oceans. Visitors can look forward to exploring 300 feet of underwater tunnels. The tunnels offer unique viewing opportunities of animals such as sharks and rays. Those looking for animals that are a little more cute and cuddly than sharks won’t be disappointed either – the Aquarium is also home to some adorable river otters. The Aquarium of the Bay is currently operating with normal hours and timed-entry tickets.
6. Walt Disney Family Museum
Here’s one for the Disney fans – the Walt Disney Family Museum highlights the life and legacy of the iconic Walt Disney himself. Guests can explore galleries chronicling the evolution and history of Disney, from his beginnings to the company he left behind. Exhibits include miniature models of the theme park and several art galleries.
7. Enjoy a Scenic Hike
If you’re looking to get outdoors and stretch your legs for a bit, why not check out Batteries to Bluffs Trail. This 0.7-mile scenic walkway winds down to Marshall’s Beach, offering stunning views of the coast as well as the Golden Gate Bridge. It’s just long enough that families can get a little exercise in, without risking tiring younger members of the group out entirely.
8. Take a Ferry To Alcatraz Island
Experience a piece of history by exploring the famous Alcatraz Island and prison. Historically dubbed “unescapable”, taking a ferry to this iconic location will ensure that you not only get a memorable experience but also have no trouble getting back to the mainland. Ferries are currently operating with limited capacity, so booking tickets in advance may be a good move.
9. Visit Pier 39
The iconic Pier 39 is known for its variety of attractions as well as being a great spot for viewing sea lions. With so many attractions to choose from, there’s bound to be something every member of your family will enjoy. Children looking for interactive some fun? Check out the San Francisco Carousel or Magowan’s Infinite Mirror Maze. Need to get some shopping in? Pier 39 is home to a variety of boutiques and stores. Hungry after a long day of exploring the city? Grab a quick bite to eat at Wipeout’s Hotdog Cart (currently only open on weekends). Or enjoy a more formal sit-down meal at Fog Harbor Fish House.
10. Ripley’s Believe It or Not
If you’re looking to add something a little out of the box or bizarre to your trip, why not check out Ripley’s Believe It or Not? This classic attraction features dozens of galleries containing oddities such as fossils and mummies. For those feeling adventurous, this location is also home to Ripley’s Marvelous Mirror Maze. Ripley’s is requiring face coverings to be worn inside.
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Disclaimer: Current travel rules and restrictions can change without notice. The decision to travel is ultimately your responsibility. Contact your consulate and/or local authorities to confirm your nationality’s entry and/or any changes to travel requirements before traveling. Travel Off Path does not endorse traveling against government advisories