Every photographer has places that pulls them in, with details or sights that catch their eye. These 5 best photography spots in San Francisco are exactly that for me — they’re perfect for challenging any photographer to step outside of their comfort zone and just go shoot. Practice makes perfect and shooting things that you usually don’t gravitate towards really challenges your eye and helps you grow. I always opt to shoot early in the morning before crowds and for anything coastal, I love shooting golden light at sunset. There’s something about how the rays light up the city.
With that being said, here’s hoping you find at least a little bit of inspiration that connects you to each my top 5 best photography spots in San Francisco to capture amazing photos
Navigate Northern California Like a Local!
Unlock the best-kept secrets of Northern & Central California with my curated Google Map, showcasing 600+ accommodations, eateries, coffee shops, and unique experiences. Get the map here!
Top 5 Best Photography Spots in San Francisco
The Mission District provides a gritty, vibrant vibe with a backdrop of street art and murals that will put a creative and colorful spin on any photographer’s work. I come here to walk the streets, pop into coffee shops like Four Barrel or Ritual, and snap along the way.
For a classic, elevated view of the city and standout proximity to the bridge, Vista Point is the perfect location to capture San Francisco’s shining symbol, the Golden Gate Bridge, from above. Choose your lens wisely as this location boasts expansive views not only of the bridge, but also the Pacific Ocean. I’d recommend a wider lens for this shot. It must be visited on one of San Francisco’s clear, fog-less days in order to see the city, if not, it will be one of those moody shots.
All roads lead to Twin Peaks and for good reason! The best view of the city is from here and it’s nearly 360 degrees! I’d recommend coming for sunset and catching the last hours of sun as the city lights start to flicker on.
Conservatory of Flowers
One of my go-to places for inspiration is this greenhouse filled with the most lush plants. I always draw inspiration from here and can spend an hour walking through with my camera in hand. One thing to note is that as it’s humid, it may take a minute or two for your camera to adjust.
Because you can never get enough of the Golden Gate Bridge! This spot is one of my favorites for a different view of the ocean and bridge together. The beach is perfect for a summer picnic as well!
For more tips and tricks to getting your best photography shots, check out the post My Top Travel Photography Tips.
Save this post for later on Pinterest:
PS — Are You Booking a Trip Soon? Use My Booking Checklist!
These are the sites I use most to book my own trips. Using the links below is a great way to support Bon Traveler’s travel journalism at no extra cost to you. If you need help organizing your itinerary, get my free travel itinerary template here.
1. Book Your Flights
Use Skyscanner to find the best flights. It searches 100s of airlines and websites across the globe to ensure you’re not missing out on any route options or deals.
2. Book Your Accommodations
Use Booking.com for hotels and guest houses. They have the biggest inventory and consistently offer the best rates.
3. Book Your Tours & Experiences
4. Book Your Car
Use Discover Cars or Rentalcars.com to find the best car rental deals. I recommend comparing rental agency reviews on Google to ensure you are booking with the best company in that destination, as the reviews are often more accurate than the car rental search engines.
5. Don’t Forget Airport Lounge Access
Get a Priority Pass membership to gain access to 1,400+ VIP lounges and airport experiences worldwide. The Priority Pass app is the first thing I check when I have a layover. I’ve been a member for over a decade, and having a comfortable place to relax before and between flights makes air travel so much more enjoyable.
6. Don’t Forget Travel Insurance
I never leave the country without travel insurance. It provides comprehensive protection in case anything goes wrong (ie. illness, injury, theft, and cancelations, etc.). I use it frequently for my travels to stay protected.
My favorite companies that offer the best coverage and rates are: