Union Square, San Francisco

Union Square, San Francisco: Our most recommended tours and activities

San Francisco: Big Bus Hop-On Hop-Off Sightseeing Tour

1. San Francisco: Big Bus Hop-On Hop-Off Sightseeing Tour

Hop aboard a sightseeing bus for a tour of the City by the Bay and delve into the fascinating history of San Francisco and its legendary landmarks, such as the Golden Gate Bridge and Fisherman's Wharf. The hop-on-hop-off route stops at the main points of interest all around San Francisco.  Experience the diverse culture, beautiful parks, stunning architecture, and picturesque views from the top of an open-air sightseeing bus. Hop off anytime and create your customized itinerary at your leisure. Explore 3 routes depending on your ticket purchase and enjoy photo stops at the Golden Gate Bridge on each route. With the Classic (24-hour) ticket, enjoy the Hop-on Hop-off service at your leisure for a full day and try the bike rental offer and ride along San Francisco's stunning waterfront. The Premium (24-Hour) and Deluxe (48-hour) tickets allow you to venture out to see the daytime and evening views of San Francisco with the panoramic Night Tour. Additionally, the Deluxe (48-hour) ticket includes the option to choose from either a bike rental, or admission to the USS Pampanito. Take a deep dive into the history of a World War WWII submarine or cycle across the Golden Gate Bridge and into Sausalito. San Francisco City Hop-On Hop-Off Tour Sit back and enjoy the ride as you cruise through the city on an open-top bus. Learn about the unique history of San Fransisco while passing through Chinatown, Union Square, Civic Center, and the Alamo Square.  Panoramic Night Tour Board the night bus to explore the dazzling city of San Francisco at nighttime. Climb the historic Nob Hill for a stunning close-up view of the magnificent Grace Cathedral. The Night Tour is included in the Premium (24-Hour) and Deluxe (48-Hour) Tickets. Then, make your way across the grand Bay Bridge for picturesque views of the city skyline from Treasure Island, the World Fair site in 1939. After heading back to the city, continue along the Embarcadero to view the glittering lights of the Port of San Francisco.

SF: Alcatraz Ticket w/ 2-Day Hop-On Hop-Off Bus & Night Tour

2. SF: Alcatraz Ticket w/ 2-Day Hop-On Hop-Off Bus & Night Tour

See the best of San Francisco with this combined hop-on-hop-off ticket and Alcatraz Island visit. Explore the island of Alcatraz and enjoy 2 days of sightseeing with insightful commentary from a live guide. Tour the famous prison that has played a role in jailhouse folklore and the historic evolution of the West Coast. Learn more about the 14 unsuccessful escape attempts by over 30 prisoners and their fates. Your Premium Big Bus hop-on-hop-off pass is a great way to see the sights of San Francisco. Listen to commentary by live English-speaking guides, or enjoy pre-recorded audio commentary in 10 languages. Your 2-day ticket includes a full day of unlimited hop-on-hop-off and a 1-hour panoramic night tour. Explore one of San Francisco's most fascinating neighborhoods on a fun and informative walking tour of Chinatown. The tours are offered daily, and you can ask an agent for locations and time schedules. Also included are a bonus 1-hour bike rental (with the purchase of a 1-hour rental) and Players Arcade Drink and Game Tokens. Hop-on, hop-off tour stops include: Stop 1: Corner of Jefferson & Mason StreetStop 2: Holiday Inn Northpoint b/w Jones & ColumbusStop 3: Washington Square - Columbus & Union StreetsStop 4: Embarcadero Center - Corner Clay & Battery StreetsStop 5: Ferry Building - Market St b/w Stuart & Spear StreetsStop 6: Union Square South - Geary St across from Macy’sStop 7: Hilton Hotel - Corner Mason & Ellis StreetsStop 8: Civic Center - Fulton St b/w Larkin & Hyde StreetsStop 9: Alamo Square - Corner Fell & Pierce StreetsStop 10: Haight Ashbury - Haight & Shrader StreetsStop 11: Golden Gate Park - Music Concourse Drive Golden Gate ParkStop 12: Golden Gate Bridge- North Vista PointStop 13: Palace of Fine Arts - Richardson & Francisco StreetStop 14: Marina Neighborhood - Lombard & Fillmore StreetsStop 15: Lombard Street Corridor - Lombard & Gough StreetsStop 16: Union Square North - Post & Powell StreetsStop 17: Chinatown Gate - Grant and Bush StreetsStop 18: Portsmouth Square - Kearny & Clay StreetsStop 19: Pier 35 Cruise Terminal - The EmbarcaderoStop 20: Pier 39 Fisherman’s Wharf (then return to Stop 1)

San Francisco: Ghosts of the Bay Area Haunted Walking Tour

3. San Francisco: Ghosts of the Bay Area Haunted Walking Tour

Set off on a San Francisco ghost tour through 8-12 different sites around the downtown area. Meet your experienced tour guide at Union Square and embark on a one-hour tour through the Nob Hill area. Perfect for first-time visitors and locals alike, this tour is great way to see the amazing sites of the affluent neighborhoods while getting a feel for the city's ghostly atmosphere.  See a side of the city seldom witnessed. Take a walk past by haunted hotels, streets, clubs, and office buildings. Learn about the ancient Mayan secrets of the Sutter buildings, the famous tragedies that haunt The Westin St. Francis, and the devastation and heartbreak that followed the great earthquake of 1906, which has literally and figuratively haunted the city for over a century. Find out about the terrible night that lead to Fatty Arbuckle's blacklisting from the film industry. After the gold rush of 1849, San Francisco became a beacon of hope and prosperity, but not everyone can strike gold, and inevitably, many people seeking fame and fortune found tragedy instead; their stories are likely to disturb and frighten you. These events throughout history continue to have an impact on the area, and the accounts you'll hear on this tour reveal that these hills have just as much horror as happiness.

San Francisco: Small-Group Sonoma Wine Tour with Tastings

4. San Francisco: Small-Group Sonoma Wine Tour with Tastings

Discover Sonoma Valley and some of its best wines on this small-group, full-day tour. Learn about the history and traditions of winemaking in the region from your expert guide and taste wines from 3 wineries. Your adventure begins with a pick-up from your hotel/accommodation in downtown San Francisco. Get to know your travel companions for the day as you head out of town and across the Golden Gate Bridge. Learn about the region from your friendly and knowledgeable guide and sample many of the delicious wines that have made Northern California a world-renowned wine-producing region. Travel with a small group (limited to 13 people) to three of Sonoma's finest boutique wineries and spend approximately one hour at each winery. This journey also includes a stop in scenic Sausalito, a stop at the Golden Gate Bridge, and a lunch stop (lunch not included) in the historic town of Sonoma where you can select from one of the many fantastic restaurants on the square. If you’re feeling adventurous, take a walk into the past at Mission San Francisco Solano. After the final winery stop of the day, relax as your guide drives you back to your accommodation in San Francisco.

San Francisco: The Haunt - Ghost Hunting Walking Tour

5. San Francisco: The Haunt - Ghost Hunting Walking Tour

Prowl through Gold Rush-era neighborhoods after dark, armed with ghost-hunting tools to seek out paranormal activity in San Francisco. The Haunt is San Francisco’s real ghost-hunting excursion, with storyteller guides sharing dark tales of the city’s haunted past. Meet by nightfall in the Jackson Square Historic District, a Gold Rush-era neighborhood of eerie Victorian architecture. Your tour guide will outfit everyone with an E.M.F. meter that you’ll use throughout the paranormal investigation. From there, enter the old neighborhood, hearing about the forgotten graves and ships buried beneath. Down quiet alleyways, learn of the destruction of the Great Earthquake of 1906, and the residual hauntings that still plague the neighborhood. At any point, you might detect E.M.F. activity, and you'll investigate further using tools such as dowsing rods and a Spirit Box. In Chinatown, hear of the tragedies that mark the neighborhood’s past, including the true crimes whose energies still linger, from a mysterious death in a historic theater to the city’s biggest massacre at the Golden Dragon. End the investigation with a ceremony to honor whatever spirits joined the group with a ritual to ensure that nothing follows you home.

San Francisco: Electric Bike Day Rental

6. San Francisco: Electric Bike Day Rental

See San Francisco in an ecologically conscious way, while comfortably negotiating the city’s famous hills with your electric bike. With your all-day rental bike, cruise along the car and pedestrian-free waterfront of San Francisco Bay and ride along the city’s bike paths. Enjoy a brand new fleet of bikes that provide an active way to experience San Francisco. Take the less-traveled routes through the city on a self-guided tour. Feel the e-Moto battery kick in as you pedal, propelling you towards your destination. The electric bikes have a range of 16-20 miles on a full charge and feature a full-comfort seat, hand shifters, and brakes. Bike through Golden Gate Park and along the coast, through the Headlands, into Muir Woods, or to Mt. Tam. Take a ride across the Golden Gate Bridge into Sausalito. From the bridge, take in the views of the bay, the ocean, and the San Francisco skyline.

San Francisco: The FRIENDS™ Experience Entry Ticket

7. San Francisco: The FRIENDS™ Experience Entry Ticket

Step into the famous television show with a ticket to the Friends Experience in San Francisco. Explore set recreations, costumes worn by the cast, and shop for souvenirs in the gift shop. Discover sets from the show like Joey and Chandler’s apartment, Monica and Rachel’s kitchen, and the coffee shop Central Perk. Stroll through interactive exhibits as if you were having a walk-on part in the show. Take pictures of you and your friends posing on the iconic orange couch. Hang out on Monica and Rachel’s kitchen table, or kick back and relax in Joey and Chandler’s comfy chairs. Conclude your visit with the chance to be pictured dancing in front of the famous fountain. Before you leave, shop for souvenirs at the on site store.

San Francisco: Panoramic Night Tour

8. San Francisco: Panoramic Night Tour

This panoramic night tour of San Francisco takes you from San Francisco Visitor Center at Fisherman's Wharf to the Presidio. Enjoy spectacular views of the Golden Gate Bridge from Marina Green and Crissy Fields. Next, reach the top of California Street on this 1-hour tour to see Grace Cathedral and historical Nob Hill. Then head downtown to capture the city skyline, the Bay Bridge, and the AT&T Park, home to the San Francisco Giants. Cross the Bay Bridge for views of the city from Treasure Island. Once the bus returns to the city, continue along the Embarcadero and admire the lights of the Port of San Francisco. A courtesy shuttle will take you back to Union Square at the end of the tour.

San Francisco 4-Hour Sightseeing Private Tour by Car

9. San Francisco 4-Hour Sightseeing Private Tour by Car

Travel in style and safety and experience a courteous, prompt, and safe transportation service on this 4-hour San Francisco tour that’s priced for a group of up to 6 persons. This is an easy and cost-effective way to get to know the city of San Francisco and the Bay Area. Avoid the crowded bus tours, parking hassles, and map searches, and start your San Francisco visit without delay. Some examples of places you might visit include Fisherman’s Wharf, Washington Square, the Embarcadero, Union Square, the Civic Center, Alamo Square, Haight-Ashbury, Golden Gate Park, the Palace of Fine Arts, Lombard Street, Chinatown, and Pier 39. Your driver will take you wherever you’d like to go in the city. Most customers choose to take a drive across the Golden Gate Bridge, and to see the Legion of Honor, Treasure Island, Sutro Baths, and other sites that are away from San Francisco’s central area. This program is available to both corporate and personal travelers.

GPS Talking Tour Cars: Chinatown/Downtown Loop

10. GPS Talking Tour Cars: Chinatown/Downtown Loop

Take a GPS-guided tour in the Storytelling Car® and see for yourself why TIME Magazine called GoCar "The Most Amazing Invention of the Year!" Let GoCar be your guide through an exciting loop of San Francisco's Chinatown and Downtown. GoCar, The Cure for the Common Tour®, lets you experience the beauty of San Francisco and visit places tour busses cannot go – all at your own pace! Fold up your map, put away the guidebook and let the GoCar show you what most visitors never see! Zip around in a cute, yellow Storytelling GoCar as it takes you on your own GPS-guided tour. The GoCar is easy and fun to drive. Since it is GPS-guided, the car knows where you are – even if you don’t. With you in the driver’s seat, it not only tells you where to turn, it tells the stories that bring the city to life. Let the car direct you, or for those more adventurous, blaze your own trail! Your tour’s length may vary due to circumstances such as departure time and location, traffic and your itinerary. If you do take additional rental time, this will be billed in 15-minute increments at our retail rates. You may visit all or some of the tour’s highlights. If you are unsure of which tour to book, just book according to the amount of time you think you would like to spend. We can customize a tour especially for you, with the sights you want to include, when you come into our shop. PRICING IS PER VEHICLE NOT PER PERSON. EACH VEHICLE SEATS 2 PEOPLE. GoCar Tours, a CarbonNeutral® Company Gocar Tours is certified CarbonNeutral® by offsetting all CO2 emissions from vehicle operations, electricity use, business travel and employee commuting across global operations in Europe and the United States.

Available activities

  • Entry tickets
  • Guided tours
  • Multi-day trips
  • City cards
  • Private tours
  • Other experiences
  • Hop-on hop-off tours
  • Adventures
  • Bundles
  • Water activities
  • Day trips
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Other Sightseeing Options in Union Square, San Francisco

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What people are saying about Union Square, San Francisco

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 2,232 reviews

Jamie was a great guide, and did am excellent job combining history, architecture, and ghost stories into our tour. Be aware that this is a walking tour in San Francisco - there are several blocks of very steep hills. Jamie did a great job of making sure nobody was rushed and waited for everyone in the group, but limber up before you go!

Great day. We spent 2 1/2 hours on the rock. You’re going to San Fran. You go to the rock. Hop on hop off Bus tour, was a perfect way to see the city. The 1 1/2 hour night tour was great as well.

we had an amazing time with Jamie as our guide. we did the extended tour and there were all kinds of stories, history to be learned and a fun way to spend the evening. will do again!

It was such a nice way to get a flavor for the city and decide which spots you wanted to investigate more fully.

Great experience. Wear warm clothing if weather is cool.