Marina Green — Go fly a kite

in FREE and Budget, Historic San Francisco, Kid-Friendly, Nature & Parks

This 74-acre grassy field runs alongside the Bay between the Presidio to the west and Fort Mason to the east. It’s as scenic a spot as you’ll find on the city’s gorgeous waterfront, offering up non-stop views of ships under sail, the Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz and Angel islands, Marin County, Mount Tamalpais…

The Marina Green is hugely popular with outdoor lovers. On sunny days the tanning brigade spreads out on blankets, oils up, and gets to work. Bikers, walkers, runners, and rollerbladers are on the move from dawn into the night. Young moms jog along, pushing strollers before them. Windy days attract dozens of kite-flyers coaxing big colorful creations into the clouds. There’s always action at the volleyball court, pickup games are common, and even the outdoor exercise stations get plenty of use.

More sedentary types find just as much reason to come here. Comfy wooden benches and the long stone sea wall are great places to take a load off and contemplate the Bay’s chilly waters. If an event is on, the Green might be crowded with artisans in craft-filled booths, sports enthusiasts ogling surfboards, or blues musicians lookin’ cool.

Picnics on the lawn? A great idea! Mosey up to Chestnut Street, where you’ll find delis and takeout food (or try the Marina Safeway, which is closer). And on the western end of the Green, near the volleyball nets, you’ll find a small hut selling hot dogs through the window.

Tip: The Marina Green, along with nearby Crissy Field, is the best place in town to witness two major annual events (unless you’re atop the Bay in a boat):

  • October’s jaw-dropping aerial performance by the U. S. Navy Blue Angels (part of the annual Fleet Week celebration)
  • The Fourth of July fireworks extravaganza, when the dazzlers are shot from a barge out on the Bay.

Why not fly your own kite?

Sparky Dog—Large Easy Flyer: Kids and dog-lovers go wild over this fabulous flyer, which gets a solid 5-star rating on Amazon. The manufacturer, Premier Kites, “designed this kite for the flyer who wants zero percent frustration and one hundred percent fun!” Dimensions: 46″ x 90″. Assembly is simple. Sparky Dog will be soaring above the Marina Green in no time. $26. Buy or learn more about the Sparky Dog Flyer.

Other top-rated kites by Premier include the Butterfly, the T-Rex, and the colorful Macaw.

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