Off the Beaten Path

Insider Tip for Golden Gate National Recreation Area
Jeffrey StrainNPF Blog

While most people are quite familiar with the iconic Golden Gate Bridge at Golden Gate National Recreation Area, many people don't realize that there is another bridge just a few miles away. Don’t miss out on a hidden little gem that should be on everyone's San Francisco travel itinerary. Point Bonita Lighthouse has a new 132-foot-long bridge allowing the public to visit the lighthouse for the first time in two years.

Bridge and lighthouse on cliff Point Bonita Lighthouse

The short hike to the lighthouse offers spectacular views of the Golden Gate Bridge, harbor seals basking on rocks just offshore and a beautiful variety of plant life. While the path is does descend a hill, it is paved and wheelchair accessible. There is also a new cell phone audio tour that allows anyone with a cell phone to get information about the area at stops along the path.

Point Bonita Lighthouse is open on Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays from 12:30 PM to 3:30 PM. It's important to note that due to the way the lighthouse is situated behind rocky outcrops (you must pass through a man-made tunnel to reach it), if you do not arrive during open hours you won't be able to see the new bridge or lighthouse, even from a distance.

Jeffrey Strain is a digital nomad who blogs about national parks at National Parks Blog during his travels.

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Last updated May 11, 2012.

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