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Palace of Fine Arts

Historic Site, Sculpture Garden, and Public Art
Marina District, San Francisco
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9.5/10
1,655
ratings
  • Mary S.
    "I love the swans!"(10 Tips)
    AchiravicH S.
    "Bus no 28 near golden gate"(5 Tips)
    Adriana J.
    "Great people watching, particularly near the Exploratorium."(3 Tips)
    Jack R.
    "Beautiful architecture - try to catch it at sunset / dusk."(9 Tips)
176 Tips and reviews
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  • Sam W.
    Sam WellerNovember 25, 2013
    Great concert hall. Well, the usual - sit in rows e,f or g - right in the center. Pick what u want to see or hear and enjoy. If the event is going to pack the house, arrive early - parking is limited
  • Justin S.
    Justin SullivanJanuary 12
    Beautiful night and day. The scale is massive. Everyone is dwarfed beneath the dome. The grounds surpass the interior, but the massive fireplaces that you see on the inside are really cool too.
  • K12 Inc
    K12 IncJune 30, 2011
    Did you know? The Palace’s design is based on a Roman ruin. It was built for the 1915 Panama-Pacific Exposition, in honor of the discovery of the Pacific Ocean and the completion of the Panama Canal. Read more
  • The Ritz-Carlton
    The Ritz-CarltonSeptember 3, 2013
    The Palace of Fine Arts is a neo-classical "ruin" originally constructed for the 1915 World's Fair and is the only structure from the historic event that is still situated on its original site.
  • Exploratorium
    ExploratoriumAugust 30, 2011
    At the Palace of Fine Arts, there's a secret listening exhibit inside one of the columns of the rotunda. SOUND COLUMN is a musical instrument whose resonating chamber is a 60-foot-high room.
  • Rebecca M.
    Rebecca MorehiserFebruary 26, 2010
    Seeing The DoDos & Magik Magik show @Noise Pop. Great ambiance, love the theater seating, though there is no center aisle, so getting up for a bathroom break can be tedious if your in the middle.
  • Fodor's Travel
    Fodor's TravelJanuary 28
    The Palace of Fine Arts is an iconic San Francisco building and one of the first you encounter upon entering the city from the Golden Gate Bridge. Read more
  • Eric
    EricMay 30, 2014
    Most miss this while driving to the Golden Gate Bridge, which is a shame because to me it says San Francisco as much as the bridge does - walk around, contemplate, enjoy the beauty.
  • Jim B.
    Jim BookJanuary 23, 2014
    very cool, walk around the lake and read the signs about the history too, lots for birders to view also along lake and island the columns and rotunda are very photgenic
  • Westfield S.
    Come celebrate the heart of San Francisco in our free animated 3D light spectacular under the dome at Westfield San Francisco Centre (865 Market Street) starting daily at 5 pm until September 3, 2012!
  • Bennett W.
    Bennett WongNovember 17, 2014
    Nice spot for concerts, performances and seminar conferences. Outdoor area perfect for anyone looking for the right spot to take wedding portraits in the open area.
  • Kevin Z.
    Kevin ZhangSeptember 6, 2014
    Come here during day or night for awesome views of this place! There are free street parking. Also there is a designated free parking lot for this place as well.
  • Carolena (CaroBbad) H.
    This is absolutely my favorite place in San Francisco. It is beautiful,relaxing & it truly takes my breath away. It stirs up my romantic side as well. I can always recognize the scenery in a movie :-) Read more
  • David
    DavidMay 16, 2015
    Definetely a must do. Do this while renting a bike to golden gate, go towards te center there is a musician there
  • Rita S.
    Rita SchiesserOctober 8, 2010
    You can't beat a picnic overlooking the lake with swans and the beautiful Palace of Fine Arts behind... unless you stay there until dark when it lights up!
  • Richard G.
    Richard GarciaFebruary 28, 2015
    This place is a must visit for when sight seeing in SF. Just sit in the middle, lie down and stare at the ceiling. You can thank me later ;)
  • Zack R.
    Zack R.May 2, 2010
    Go to Pizzeria Avellino a block north of Palace of Fine Arts for a cheap but quality meal before your show. Good happy hour deals too!
  • Anton S.
    Anton ShusterJanuary 14
    Originally built in 1915 for Panama-Pacific Expo, this remains an amazing place to visit. What out for the angry swans; they'll chase you.
  • Culera C.
    Gorgeous architecture, but at night, some roller skaters reunite with loud music & color lights that ruin the atmosphere and of course, the pics.
  • Bentley F.
    Bentley FerrainaOctober 13, 2015
    The Great Houdini Escape Room is the best I've ever done. The puzzles and narrative are artful and immersive!
  • Jon M.
    Jon McDonaldApril 22, 2014
    Check it out. Part of The Rock was filmed here. The dome is also inspiration for R2-D2. Stroll around and photobomb a wedding or quinceñara photo shoot.
  • Pacific Catch
    Pacific CatchFebruary 5, 2012
    You will be transported to a different land here. Walk to the middle dome, lay on the ground and look up in wonderment. There's a pretty good echo here too! The spot of many wedding photos.
  • Pez C.
    Pez CuckowApril 30
    Make sure you don't miss the red-eared slider turtles in the Palace Lagoon
  • Nadine M.
    Nadine MansourMay 26, 2014
    Bring a blanket and have a picnic so you can enjoy some good old people watching - especially fun when weddings are happening
  • Mary S.
    Mary SAugust 20, 2015
    Gorgeous building. Go the museum nearby to learn more. I love the swans!
  • Chris H.
    Chris HarrisJune 11, 2013
    Beautiful spot and great picture opportunity . . . add it to your must see list if visiting San Francisco!
  • Sarahnaut
    SarahnautSeptember 1, 2014
    There's one area where you can go up the "steps" and people watch from a height.
  • Eric W.
    Eric WuebbenDecember 12, 2012
    This is a quick stop, not a ton to see, but what you do see is beautiful. There's a science museum next door that's great for kids.
  • JB U.
    JB UtheimJanuary 9, 2012
    Plan to be here all day. There are entirely too many awesome things to look at, as well as things outside to take pictures of.
  • Hannah G.
    Hannah GarciaAugust 13, 2015
    If you love scenic views & feeling a bit like royalty, check this place out #aesthetics haha
  • Meenie P.
    Meenie PApril 28, 2014
    Be careful of thieves who broke into your car window!! Dont't even leave jacket or any other shopping bags inside the car. Better keep them all in the trunk.
  • David P.
    David PascualJuly 13, 2012
    this monument is amazing. You don't realize how massive it is until you get there and see it by yourself
  • herm p.
    herm pugayNovember 25, 2014
    This is all that is left from the 1915 Panama-Pacific Exposition. Wonderfully preserved. I was here for an editorial shoot :)
  • Cynthia V.
    Cynthia VelazquezJuly 7, 2013
    Love this building, awesome place to have a picnic and take lots of pictures, must visit!
  • Anjani V.
    Anjani VAugust 25, 2013
    Beautiful place to roam during day light. The sights are gorgeous!
  • Philipp
    PhilippJune 11, 2013
    A truly inspiring place. Bring a book, sit down on a bench, read.
  • Nespresso USA
    Nespresso USADecember 10, 2012
    Beautiful, relaxing and breathtaking. It’s the perfect artistic getaway in San Francisco! Visit the Rotunda or have a picnic on a sunny day.
  • Nespresso USA
    Nespresso USADecember 10, 2012
    Beautiful, relaxing and breathtaking. It’s the perfect artistic getaway in San Francisco! Visit the Rotunda or have a picnic on a sunny day.
  • Vindu G.
    Vindu GoelOctober 6, 2013
    The theater is nicely built. Lots of leg room. No bad seats. But a bit too warm. No AC.
  • Candid Cuisine
    Candid CuisineJune 25, 2015
    The view is just spectacular. Come here after you visited Golden Gate Bridge.
  • Victor M.
    Don't forget to visit it at night. The lighting of the place is beautiful.
  • Dan M.
    Beautiful, beautiful place out of the blue, there are ducks, turtles and crazy raccoons hahaha
  • Bridesign Wedding Flowers
    Beautiful place for a wedding! Get affordable wedding flowers delivered in a box from www.bridesign.com delivered to this wedding venue!
  • Tim H.
    Tim HyooeeedeweylouieNovember 23, 2015
    The current operators' lease is running out and the latest proposals want to turn the site into a luxury hotel. Do something about it.
  • Melay M.
    Melay MMay 11
    Beautiful place to visit you can chill and just watch and enjoy
  • Danilo M.
    Danilo MoretAugust 27, 2011
    Get here by taking the bus n. 30 to feel the city. It's all the way to the end.
  • Stephen P.
    Stephen PinkertonAugust 30, 2015
    Beautiful late at night, plus parking is available!
  • Jenny Q.
    Jenny QMay 31, 2015
    No more Exploratorium but still lovely. Always wedding or engagement photo shoots, which can also be fun to creep on
  • Abdullah A.
    Abdullah AlghanimNovember 21, 2014
    Just amazing. Don't miss this atmosphere.
  • James R.
    James RichardsonMarch 20, 2011
    The seats are on the small side, so get ready to get friendly with your seat mates
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