A picturesque neighborhood hugging the San Francisco Bay, the Marina District houses incredible beauty and breath-taking scenery.
The real calling card of the Marina District is not the jaw-dropping view of the San Francisco Bay, but the area’s also home to a great nightlife scene. There is plenty of local farmer’s markets on the weekends, scenic bike paths, a lovely marina, and all kinds of vintage stores.
Historical Background of San Francisco’s Marina District
The Palace of Fine Arts – located on the west side of the Marina District – is a perfect touchstone for getting into the history of the Marina District. Why’s that?
Because the Palace of Fine Arts was the only building that didn’t undergo demolition following the 1906 San Francisco Earthquake. Following that catastrophic 7.8 magnitude quake, the Marina District was rebuild to form the foundations of what you see today.
In fact, just nine years after the 1906 San Francisco Earthquake the area held the 1915 Panama-Pacific International Exhibition. This was essential a world’s fair set about to commemorate the successful completion of the Panama Canal and expansion of US trade all around the world.
In a case of history repeating itself, the Marina District encountered and resiliently weathered another disastrous earthquake in 1989 (the Loma Prieta Earthquake). Once again, the Marina District’s buildings and amenities were fully restored.
Where’s the Marina District? What’s Around It?
The Marina District is actually located between the ever-popular tourist attraction Fisherman’s Wharf to the east and the Golden Gate Bridge further down towards the west.
For those a little more familiar with the local thoroughfares, you can enter the Marina District from Lombard Street itself as the Marina District is just inland from Pacific Heights.
Van Ness Avenue runs along the east side of the Marina District while Lyon Street and the Presidio National Park cover the west end.
The Presidio has actually been a fortified location since the time of the American Revolution (1776) and the former military base (now an expansive park) changed hands and became Mexican property at the turn on the 19th century.
In 1848, the United States took a second look at the Presidio and the area’s been American owned ever since.
The Presidio of San Francisco – once known as the Royal Fortress of Saint Francis – is now an undulating and heavily wooded park that’s been receiving funds by Congress since the 1990s to ensure its continued success as a local getaway and tourist hub.
Since the 1930s, though, the Presidio has been a California historical landmark and national historic landmark for the past half-century.
Once you get into the Marina District proper, which would only be about half an hour from San Francisco International Airport by cab or about 45 minutes from San Francisco Park by bus, you open yourself up to incredibly shoreline, interesting people, great bars and a killer skyline.
One of the absolutely must-see attractions of the Marina District, though, is the Marina Green.
The Marina Green is a 70-plus acre park bookended by the Presidio (park and former military base) and Fort Mason (former army outpost situated along the Northern part of the Marina District and affording stunning views of the craggy, gorgeous San Francisco Bay).
From Marina Green you can scope out the Golden Gate Bridge as well as Angel Island and perhaps the better known island of the pair, notorious Alcatraz Island.
For those actually interested in taking to the high seas, Marina Green is right next to the Golden Gate Yacht Club. For biking enthusiasts, check out the San Francisco Bay Trail that snakes through the park.
The Brick Yard Bar & Restaurant
The Brick Yard located on historic Union Street brings southern influenced cuisine with a West Coast twist. From shareable, simple and tasty bar food to signature dishes like the “Yard Bird”, come enjoy all the things that make The Brick Yard your go-to brunch, lunch, and game day spot in San Francisco’s Marina District!