Ocean Beach stretches about 3.5 miles along San Francisco's western shore, from the Cliff House to Fort Funston. It's part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area.
Scenes from Ocean Beach
Enjoy some of our best shots in this Ocean Beach Photo Tour
Ocean Beach Fees
- Entrance Fee: None
Parking Fee: None
Creature Comforts at Ocean Beach
- Outdoor showers and restrooms are available near the Sloat entrance
- At the north end, restrooms at the Cliff House or across the street at Beach Chalet
- Food is available at the Beach Chalet and the Cliff House
- Dogs are allowed, but keep them on a leash or under voice control so they don't disturb the endangered snowy plover
Ocean Beach Activities
Alcohol and glass containers are not allowed on Ocean Beach.
- Bonfires are allowed for groups of 25 people or less, between Lincoln Way & Fulton Street, with some restrictions. Go to the park index at to download a copy (pdf file).
- Surfing, but only if you know how to handle the riptides and undercurrents
- Walking and skating along the esplanade above the beach
- Swimming not recommended
- Fishermen favor the area around the rocks, below the Cliff House
Highs and Lows at Ocean Beach
- Ocean Beach can be foggy all day, even in summer
- This spot can be very crowded on a nice day. For a quieter spot, go south from the main beach area.
Rip currents (swift-moving channels of water rushing from the shore out to sea), cold water and shore breaks (waves breaking directly on steep sloping beaches) have injured and killed people at Ocean Beach, even when they were just wading near the shoreline. Keep an eye out for large waves approaching and watch your children.
How to Get to Ocean Beach
Ocean Beach is on the west side of San Francisco. Take Geary Blvd west until it curves left and downhill onto Great Highway.
There are three parking lots at Ocean Beach, one on the south at Sloat, one across from Golden Gate Park and street parking near the Cliff House. In a pinch, use the lots above Cliff House and walk down.
A tip for driving on Great Highway: Go 35 miles per hour and you won't have to stop. Go faster and end up waiting at the next light.
Muni bus #23 goes to Ocean Beach.
More San Francisco Beaches