Palace of Fine Arts Theatre

Palace of Fine Arts Theatre

Palace of Fine Arts Theatre
4.5
6:00 AM - 9:00 PM
Monday
6:00 AM - 9:00 PM
Tuesday
6:00 AM - 9:00 PM
Wednesday
6:00 AM - 9:00 PM
Thursday
6:00 AM - 9:00 PM
Friday
6:00 AM - 9:00 PM
Saturday
6:00 AM - 9:00 PM
Sunday
6:00 AM - 9:00 PM
About
Designed to look like a Greco-Roman ruin, this structure was originally built for the 1915 Panama-Pacific Exposition. It's now a prime events venue.
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The area
Address
Neighbourhood: Marina District
Beautiful homes, beautiful people, and a beautiful backdrop of the Golden Gate Bridge welcome visitors to the Marina. Originally the location for the Panama-Pacific International Exposition in 1915 (whose remnants can be seen at the Palace of Fine Arts), much of the land was filled and flattened to accommodate a world’s fair. That ample space has given way to a jogger’s paradise at the northern edge of the city. With the picturesque bay setting as its backdrop, it’s no surprise that the area has hosted numerous movie productions. Daytime activities focus on café culture and boutique shopping, while the evenings turn this neighbourhood into a party-going hotspot.
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See what travellers are saying
  • Anna L
    Brantford, Canada190 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    A Pleasant Surprise
    I was actually surprised how much I enjoyed visiting here. It is quieter than Golden Gate, although obviously not as big. But I found it to be so pretty and peaceful. We walked from the Ferry Building area so were glad to have somewhere to rest for a bit. It's a pretty park with a pond and the architecture, while imitation, is still quite impressive. There were quite a few people having their wedding photos taken when we were there. And beware the ducks... they are not afraid of people and won't hesitate to walk right up to you while you sit on the grass near the pond. I'm glad we took the time and came here. It's also in a pretty part of the city.
    Visited July 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 2 August 2023
  • Alan H
    Whitchurch, United Kingdom246 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Bucket list holiday
    The Palace of fine art is a must see if you like nice gardens and odd architecture. My wife and i walk from our Hotel to the park which is around 9 mile around trip. You can hire bike if you don’t fancy the walk.
    Visited August 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 9 August 2023
  • Paula T
    6 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Beautiful place!
    Beautiful place!!!!!! Very recommended, the lake and the view is really nice. It’s a great place to see the time pass by and relax by the lake. There were pretty clean public bathrooms. If I had the money I would definitely live in front of the park and the palace.
    Visited August 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 18 August 2023
  • E450KCad
    40 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Underrated attraction
    Underrated attraction. It is picturesque, larger than expected, not crowded and free. Will not take long (around 30 minutes) to see but worth it. Some seating (benches, wall) is available within the park.
    Visited October 2023
    Travelled solo
    Written 11 October 2023
  • FunBoyOne
    London, United Kingdom464 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Quirky site, lovely in the sunshine
    A friend recommended this slightly quirky place and we visited in the morning of our last day in San Francisco and we were very glad we did. It’s on the edge of the bay with a good view of the bridge, located in an upmarket area and it is very well maintained. Lovely garden and lake with herons, turtles etc. Lots of photo opportunities with the lake, bridge and buildings. There was a poor guy spending time composing his photo of the lake with a tripod who kept getting interrupted by the instagrammerati.
    Visited November 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 2 November 2023
  • Michael K
    San Jose, California1,108 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    An awe inspiring structure that is a must see attraction in San Francsco
    This is a must see attraction for visitors to San Francisco. The structure is simply awe inspiring. Even though it was built over a century ago, the place is well kept and clean without the grime and bird dropping usually found in historical buildings. Parking is available but may be hard to come by.
    Visited November 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 27 November 2023
  • Roary
    Vancouver, Canada3,715 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Go in the day and night
    I stopped here both during the day and night, and both are worth doing. The structure is impressive and well-kept which makes for lots of great photo opportunities. Best of all, it's free to visit. Parking might be hard during the day, but empty at night.
    Visited December 2023
    Travelled with friends
    Written 10 December 2023
  • andyh67186334
    Coalville, United Kingdom9,996 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Second Visit to the Palace of Fine Arts Theatre
    To think that this monument could have been demolished, would have been a travesty. The Palace of Fine Theatre is located away from the city centre near the San Francisco Yacht Club and Marina area of the city. A picturesque area to walk around, which is surrounded by water and some impressive houses. It's free to enter and is illuminated at night.
    Visited January 2024
    Travelled solo
    Written 21 January 2024
  • Nico Samneil Sy Salado
    Newport, Vermont1,921 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Mesmerizing
    A really relaxing place. Feels like you are in greece or somewhere European! The redwoods are pretty amazing as well. No entrance fee. Parking has a minimal amount to pay. See images and videos for further information.
    Visited May 2024
    Travelled with family
    Written 4 May 2024
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4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles4,509 reviews
Excellent
2,919
Very good
1,301
Average
248
Poor
34
Terrible
7

Indiana_Jonesse
San Francisco, CA7,065 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020
From the Marina district, you can see the top of the building and its distinctive dome. This is a venue for fine arts exhibit, this building is 100+ years old. In some parts of the columns, it’s showing some deterioration with some of the statues’ heads are missing. But nevertheless this is the place to seek refuge with your aching feet. Take a seat at the benches facing the pond and open your camera shutters. This place displays a romantic ambiance for the dating couple. You can visit the exhibits inside or simply rest under the dome and near the pond. Wedding picture perfect.
Written 25 February 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

JostVonDyke
Washington Crossing, PA622 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2021 • Family
The Palace of Fine Arts is a beautiful site to take in breathtaking architecture and impressive landscaping. Walking around the site is free. Tours are also available for a reasonable price. There are plenty of other tourists and photographers walking around, but everyone seemed very respectful.

The palace was built in 1915 for the Panama Pacific Exposition then completely rebuilt from 1964-1974. I was impressed most by the rotunda. The site is very convenient near the marinas along the bay.

If you’re in the area, stop by and spend a half hour or an hour taking in the beauty. It’s a great spot for some photos of an iconic San Francisco site!
Written 20 July 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Reed
Orlando, FL2,431 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2021 • Friends
Often times large public parks/structures like this can be overhyped in tourist cities, but this legacy building from the 1915 Panama-Pacific exhibition is exceptionally impressive. It’s beautiful to walk through and amazing to photograph from any angle, especially when you have nice weather. We were lucky enough to see a band perform in the center for a few minutes, but make sure you take the time to walk around the whole grounds and look at all the details. As with most tourist areas in San Fransisco - DO NOT LEAVE ANYTHING IN YOUR CAR AT ALL.
Written 2 August 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Connie R
Iowa259 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2021 • Couples
The Palace of the Fine Arts in the Marina district of San Francisco is an iconic site visible from many parts of the bay area. If you find yourself in the city and you have some time to wander, it is well worth your time to visit this beautiful location. I recommend reading a little bit about the structure’s history before you go. There’s a nice pond and a grassy area which would be perfect for a picnic lunch. Or you could just stop by on your way to somewhere else as my husband and I did, and wander through this lovely location.
Written 17 October 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

FunBoyOne
London, UK464 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2023 • Couples
A friend recommended this slightly quirky place and we visited in the morning of our last day in San Francisco and we were very glad we did. It’s on the edge of the bay with a good view of the bridge, located in an upmarket area and it is very well maintained. Lovely garden and lake with herons, turtles etc. Lots of photo opportunities with the lake, bridge and buildings. There was a poor guy spending time composing his photo of the lake with a tripod who kept getting interrupted by the instagrammerati.
Written 2 November 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

PackYourBags100
17 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2020 • Family
Who doesn't love strolling around a park with great historical structures, a small lagoon & greenery all around?! An added bonus of ducks and other birds makes it even more enjoyable for the kids. From the name itself, it also boasts of a rich history of art exhibitions in the past. We saw several couples doing photoshoots in the area. It's no wonder, the Palace is definitely IG-worthy!
Written 25 January 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Tina Montinola
Makati, Philippines446 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2022
This place is beautiful. The lake with the ducks is so serence and relaxing, you can just sit somewhere and kill time while watching the ducks. You can walk your furry pets around here, be sure to pick up after them. You can also have photo shoots especially pre-nups since the structures are so nice here. My niece had her civil wedding here as well.
Written 14 July 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

GitchSup
Duluth, MN1,405 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2022
This absolutely beautiful structure is done in Beaux-Arts style architecture that was popular in the early 1800s, meaning there are a lot of both french and baroque influences making it super ornate and stunning to look at, every detail is a marvel. There are Grecian women looking over the edge "into" the theater, greek urns on the ledges, latticework in the rotunda, stunning columns in a russet red color, shell and floral stonework at the top of the pillars; everywhere you look there is something more to see. If you love architecture you should allow at least an hour to see this stunning sight.
Written 5 June 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

WayneTech
Mississauga, Canada266 contributions
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2022
Look, it's a beautiful building, and that's it. If you want to go take pictures, this is a nice place to do it. Apart from that, there's noting of interest here. When I went, at least, the inside was pretty much warded off. There were these cylindrical viewing spots where you could look into and see the history of this building. Worth it? Not to me.
Written 30 September 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Ralph W
Phoenix, AZ27 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2021
The Palace of Fine Arts is one of my favorite spaces and definitely a must-see when I visit San Francisco. The minute I walk into the park a feeling of serenity and peace wash over me. Walking around looking up at the massive columns and archways is breathtaking. The gardens, the lagoon, the fountains, and the trees are all so peaceful. Just an amazing place.
Written 4 October 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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PALACE OF FINE ARTS THEATRE (2024) All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with Photos)

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