Crossing the strait of the Golden Gate from San Francisco to the Marin headlands for 1.7 miles is the world-renowned Golden Gate Bridge, easily identified by its International Orange color. Opened in 1937, the bridge was built at a cost of $33 million and 10 workers' lives. The single-suspension span is anchored off the shores of the bay by twin towers that reach skyward 750 feet, and was once taller than any building in San Francisco. To support the suspended roadway, two cables more than 7,000 feet in length, containing 70,000 miles of wire stretch over the top of the towers and are rooted in concrete piers on shore. Ten years in planning due to formidable opposition, but only four years in actual construction, the Golden Gate Bridge brought the communities of San Francisco and Marin counties closer together.
General Visitor Info
Pedestrians including wheelchair users and bicyclists can go on the sidewalks of the bridge during daylight hours but roller blades, skateboards and roller skates are not permitted. There are vista points on both north and south sides of the bridge with parking lots.
If you can’t visit the bridge in person, do the virtual bridge walk and don’t forget to check out the view from the top of the south tower.
How to Get There
From downtown, take #38 Geary Boulevard to Park Presidio and transfer to #28 northbound to get to the Golden Gate Bridge. If you’re taking Golden Gate Transit from San Francisco, the #10, #60, #70 or #80 lines will take you to the bridge.
For additional information, routes and schedules, please visit the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency and Golden Gate Transit sites.
Did You Know?
The name came from the fact that the Golden Gate Strait (named by John Fremont) is the entrance into San Francisco Bay from the Pacific Ocean.
International Orange was selected as the color of the bridge because it provided visibility in the fog for passing ships and also because it was a color that fit in naturally to the bridge’s setting and the surrounding land area.
The bridge has only been closed three times due to weather since it was built; all three times due to high winds gusting close to or over 70 miles per hour. The bridge has also been closed for visits from dignitaries President Franklin D. Roosevelt and President Charles de Gaulle of France and also on its 50th Anniversary in 1987.
Movies that included the Golden Gate Bridge:
Interview with a Vampire (1994)
Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country (1991)
A View to a Kill (1985)
Golden Gate Bridge Highway and Transportation District.