A rocky point at San Francisco’s westernmost tip, Lands End is a shutterbug’s dream. With epic views of the Golden Gate Bridge, sweeping vistas of the Pacific coast, and access to the ruins at Sutro Baths, Lands End is wild, windy, and beautiful.
Lands End is a hiker’s paradise with coastal trails running from Ocean Beach past Sutro Baths and the memorial to the USS San Francisco to Fort Point and the Golden Gate Bridge. The recently remodeled Lands End Lookout Visitor Center has indoor exhibits about the natural history of the area, Sutro Baths, and Sutro Heights. The on-site café serves up piping hot mocha and hot chocolate, enticement to return after a brisk hike in foggy weather.
Many tours of San Francisco stop at Lands End and allow time to explore Sutro Baths and the Cliff House and enjoy stunning views of the Pacific. Walking tours of Lands End or coastal walking tours from the Golden Gate Bridge to Lands End generally include more time at Sutro Baths and finish with a drink at the Cliff House.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Layers are recommended as weather can change quickly from warm and sunny to foggy and chilly.
- Sturdy walking shoes are a must to safely explore Sutro Baths and the hiking trails of Lands End.
- Don’t forget your camera for the unique views of the Golden Gate Bridge, Cliff House, and San Francisco skyline.
- Sutro Baths is not wheelchair accessible, but the nearby Lands End Lookout Visitor Center and Cliff House are. Those with limited mobility can also access an overlook with benches at the north end of El Camino Del Mar parking lot, while wheelchair-accessible trails begin at the Merrie Way parking lot.
- There is a small sea cave and tidal pools where the ocean meets the land beyond the Sutro Baths. Beware of the wave break and slippery stairs and paths when walking on the cliffs.
- Lands End Lookout has a small café, gift shop, and restroom facilities.
How to Get There
Access Lands End Lookout Visitors Center, at the intersection of Point Lobos Avenue and Merrie Way, by San Francisco Muni’s 38 Geary bus line. Exit at 48th Avenue and Point Lobos Avenue and walk a third-mile (0.54 kilometers) to the baths. Many visitors hike from Lands End to the Golden Gate Bridge or vice versa. A parking lot behind Lands End Lookout is impossibly busy on sunny days and summer weekends.
When to Get There
Lands End Lookout Visitor Center is open daily from 9am to 5pm and closed on Thanksgiving, Christmas Day, and New Year’s Day. You can visit Sutro Baths from sunrise to sunset. Summer brings the most visitors to the area, and the baths, lookout, Cliff House, and trails can be quite crowded. Visit early in the morning or on a rainy day if you would like the place to yourself.
The Spaniards named the rocky, westernmost point of land "Point Lobos" or "the sea wolves" for the many sea lions (lobos marinos) that used to call the area home. Though the sea wolves have moved north in search of cooler waters, the Spanish name stuck.