Find Parking for the Golden Gate Bridge: Everything You Need to Know

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The Golden Gate Bridge is San Francisco’s top rated tourist spot. So, it’s no wonder that finding parking for the Golden Gate Bridge can be a tricky proposition, especially on a holiday or busy weekend. Not to worry, we’ve got you covered. This guide will show you all of the spots for parking near the Golden Gate Bridge with advice on which are the most convenient, which are free and which ones are near cool trails.

Golden Gate Bridge parking - Welcome Center
The parking lot at the main Welcome Center.

Once you’ve sorted out your parking situation, be sure to check out these resources for how to best experience the bridge. Start with our guide for visiting the Golden Gate Bridge. It has everything you’ll need. Or you can check out one of the more specific articles below:

Please note that car break-ins are a plague in San Francisco. While there is some security at the Visitor’s Center, many of these Golden Gate Bridge parking lots are more out of the public eye. So take care to bring your valuables with you.

Golden Gate Bridge Battery Spencer Langdon parking
Views of the bridge and Battery Spencer from near the Langdon lot.

How to Find South Side Parking for the Golden Gate Bridge

Most people visit the bridge from the south side. It provides the easiest access from downtown SF and the Welcome Center. Because of this, there is also a lot more bridge parking available on the south end. The image below shows you 8 spots for Golden Gate Bridge parking that are all walking distance to the Welcome Center.

Please note that there are two parking lots near the Golden Gate bridge which show up on Google Maps, but aren’t available to the public. The Battery Cranston parking lot (west of the bridge) is for employees only. Right next to that down Merchant Road is another parking lot that used to be open to visitors but it’s now closed.

Golden Gate Bridge parking map south end
South end bridge parking map.

Visitor Center Parking Lot

Just steps away from the bridge is at the Visitor Center (or Welcome Center). This lot is particularly good for people with mobility issues. However, it’s also one of the smaller lots in this guide. It fills up very quickly on busy weekends and holidays but you can often find a spot if you visit during a weekday.

How to get to the Visitor’s Center Parking Lot: As you take Highway 101 north toward the bridge, look for signs that say “Welcome Center” and “last exit for the bridge”. Be alert because you don’t get a lot of warning. You can also get to the lot from Crissy Field on Lincoln Blvd.

How much does the lot cost: It’s $.25 for 15 minutes 2 hours max. The machine doesn’t take cash.

East Battery Parking Lot

The East Battery Parking lot is just a bit down the hill from the Visitor’s Center and it functions as an overflow lot with ~80 parking spots. The lot itself offers a nice view of the south end of the bridge and it’s only a 2 minute walk to the Welcome Center .

How to get to the East Battery Parking Lot: Follow the same directions as for the Visitor’s Center, but rather than going left into the Visitor’s Center lot, go right and slightly downhill.

How much does the lot cost: The parking fee is $1.20/hour or $7.00 for all day. Be sure to display your ticket on the dash.

6302 Merchant Road Lot

This is located just west of the bridge. During weekday work hours, the employees use it, but regular folks can use it on the weekends and off-hours.

How to get to the Merchant Road Lot: You get to it by crossing under the bridge from the Visitor Center Lot.

How much does the lot cost: It’s free.

Langdon Court Parking Lot

Landgon Court has the best free parking for the Golden Gate Bridge. It’s an easy 5-10 minute walk to the Welcome Center. For a bonus, the trail from the parking lot to the bridge goes along Battery Spencer and Battery Boutelle. So you can explore the old military emplacements as you stroll toward the bridge. There are ~50 spots in what is primarily a dirt lot.

How to get to the Langdon Court Parking Lot: Follow the directions for the Visitor’s Center. Circle toward left and then follow the signs directing you under the bridge onto Merchant Road. Turn right onto Lincoln and the lot will be on your immediate right. You can also get there from westbound Lincoln (via Baker Beach).

How much does the lot cost: Landgon Court is blessedly free.

CNG Parking Lot

CNG is a small pay lot right across the street from Langdon Court. It’s a good option if Langdon Court is full.

How to get to the CNG Parking Lot: Follow the directions to Langdon Court. CNG is just to the south of the Langdon lot entrance.

How much does the lot cost: The parking fee is $1.90/hour or $9.50 all day.

Fort Winfield Scott Parking Lot

This lot serves the Fort Scott athletic field, so in addition to bridge visitors, there will also be locals parking there. But it’s good size, with ~45 spots in the lot itself and addition parking spacing spilling down Storey Ave. This lot also has easy assess to the California Coastal Trail, bridge overlooks and the batteries.

How to get to the Fort Winfield Scott parking lot: Follow the directions to Langdon Court, but rather than turning right onto Lincoln Blvd, go straight onto Storey Road.

How much does it cost: $1.90/hour or $9.50 all day.

Log Cabin Parking Lot

The Log Cabin is down Storey Road from the Fort Winfield Scott Parking Lot. It’s somewhat less convenient than the south end lots listed above, but on a crazy busy day, you have to take whatever you can get. This lot has ~42 parking spots.

How to get to the Log Cabin parking lot: Keep going down Storey Road past the Scott field for a few blocks. The Log Cabin will be on the left.

How much does it cost: $1.90/hour or $9.50 all day.

Crissy Field Hamilton Road Parking Lot

The Crissy Field lot is located below the bridge at water level. It’s not convenient if you just want to make a quick stop at the bridge. But it is a great place to park if you want to stroll along the water, visit Fort Point and are keen to take the Battery East trail up to the bridge. There are ~150 parking spots at Crissy Field.

How to get to the Crissy Field parking lot: Take Highway 101 north to Girard and then take a left on Mason.

How much does it cost: Crissy Field is a free parking lot during the week. On the weekends it costs $1.20/hr or $7 for the full day.

Fort Point Parking Lot

Like Crissy field, the Fort Point lot is great if you want to see the underside of the bridge or if you want to take the East Battery trail up to the Welcome Center. The Fort itself was built during the civil war and is worth a visit. There is free parking along the road into the fort. But be careful, because there will be a lot of pedestrians in the road. On a very high tide day, sometimes the water splashes over the breakwater onto the road.

How to get to the Fort Point Parking lot: Following the directions to Crissy Field. Keep driving west along Marine Drive to the end of the road.

How much does it cost: Fort Point parking is blessedly free.

The Best Golden Gate Bridge Views- Vista Point
View of the bridge from Vista Point.

North Side Golden Gate Bridge Parking

The map image below shows you three ways to park on the north side of the Golden Gate Bridge. There is also a scenic drive that goes west along Conzelman road. There are pullouts and free parking spots along that road and they do provide nice views of the bridge, but they don’t offer good access to the bridge.

Parking for Golden Gate Bridge north side map
North side Golden Gate Bridge parking map.

Vista Point Parking Lot

There are ~135 parking spots at the Vista Point lot. This is a very popular stop for viewing the bridge and it’s always crowded. However, people tend to stop, take a pic and move on. So, even if the lot is full, you can circle a few times and get a spot if you are patient.

How to get to the Vista Point parking lot: Travel north on the bridge and take the Vista Point exit. It will come upon you quickly, so stay alert. From the north, take the Alexander exit.

How much does it cost: Vista Point parking is blessedly free.

Conzelman Road Trail Head Parking

If you simply can’t find at spot at the Vista Point, try the Conzelman Road trailhead. There are ~25 spots there. You can park and take the pedestrian walkway under the bridge to the Vista Point.

How to get to the Conzelman Road parking lot: Go north out of the Vista Point parking lot, and take Alexander Ave under the highway and then turn left on Conzelman.

How much does it cost: Conzelman Road is blessedly free.

Fort Baker Parking Lot

Like Fort Point, Fort Baker is good if you are interested in exploring the military history of the area and getting down-lo views of the bridge. There are ~175 parking spots, which are shared with the Bay Area Discovery Museum. From Fort Baker, you can walk up to the Vista Point by taking the Conzelman Road trail.

How to get to the Fort Baker parking lot: Take the Alexander exit and turn right on Bunker road.

How much does it cost: Fort Baker is blessedly free.

Find Your Favorite Lot

The best free Golden Gate Bridge parking: Langdon road, Vista Point, Fort Baker and Crissy Field (on weekdays).

The most convenient Golden Gate Bridge parking: The Visitor’s Center and East Battery lots.

Good lots for accessing trails with great bridge views: Langdon Street, CNG and Fort Winfield Scott for access to the Batteries to Bluffs trail and the California Coastal Trail. Fort Point and Crissy Field are best for access to the East Battery Trail.

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