Discover Emma's selection with her top 8 (+1) of the best, coolest, most whatever playgrounds in San Francisco.



If you have kids from toddlers to 10 years old, you know already or will find out soon that you will spend a lot (like in A LOT) of time at playgrounds. The best way to make a good use of this time is to know how to alternate depending on the moods (yours and your kids' one), circumstances, neighborhoods, views, tantrums (yours and your kids's ones)...


So follow Emma throughout the city with the best playgrounds for fun (yours and your kids' one) sake!



Once upon a time in a close, very close land, there was a galore of playgrunds...


You can find them almost in each corner, each neighborhood. San Francisco counts more than 130 playgrounds .


With or without a stroller, after school or early Sunday mornings, with family or visitors , you can enjoy them for free all around the city. We tried a lot of them and we will present you 8 (+1) of those we loved. This is not a closed list but just the ones our favorite testers liked so much that they always asked us to go back…


The one that can’t be missed.

Koret Children's Quarter  Golden Gate Park Bowling Green Dr near Martin Luther King Jr Dr & Kezar

This is the most famous one, but also one of the biggest ones. We appreciate that little ones and older ones could play at the same time together, with so many different games. We also recommend keeping an eye on them because of the size and openness of the place, it is easy to ‘lose’ them. The big ciment slide is a favorite one but be careful with your hands: it is easy to scratch them .

There is a carousel just on the side which is running on week ends and vacations days. A bonus! You could also ride your scooter all around the carousel. This is a perfect place to practice.





The Family one

Angelo J: Rossi Edward at Arguello Boulevard

Neighborhood: Inner Richmond/ Lone Mountain.


We love this one because the playground is closed, it is fun and offers diverse games for children 4 and older. There are some tables to share a snack. We also recommend you to bring your ball for the older ones who might like to play on the field, or on the basket court.



For the youngest ones

Noe Valley Courts Playground 24th Street @ Douglass Street

Neighborhood: Noe Valley

The perfect place for little ones and toddlers.  Allows them  to have their first smile and slide . this is a nice and friendly place, with a big sand bucket and a bench for mommies to drink their coffee. In the other side of the area, the grass is most of the time dog friendly… and there is also a tennis court. Something pleasant for each members of your family



The one with the  most amazing view of the city

Alta Plazza Washington St. at Scott St.

Neighborhood: Pacific Heights

On the top of the park, you will find the playground. With a lot of classic playground staples, it's a pretty big space, and there's enough to do that the kids spread out quite a bit.


While they play you will be able to appreciate one of the most beautiful views of the city which is a plus to your waiting time .



Just before the hike…

Julius Kahn playground West Pacific Ave; enter off Arguello or Presidio

Neighborhood: Presidio Heights

We love this playground because you can always spend time there before or after your hike in the Presidio Park. The playground has rubber flooring but there are  structure in the sand also and water is available close to it.

On the other side there is a large field and a club house, with toilets.


After the Museum…

Lincoln Playground Clement Street @ 33rd Street

Sometimes visits at the museum could be long for the children . So why not end your visit at the Legion of Honor Museum by a stop at this nice playground, just down below the golf course. 2 areas for 2 ages. A big tunnel slide for the older ones and a lot of places to sit for the parents.


If you have your glove and ball you will be able to practice also in the grass on the other side.





The one in the City

Yerba Buena Gardens Howard btw 3rd & 4th St

Neighborhood: South of Market


Being downtown, under the sun and enjoying a playground it is possible:-) You could have a nice time at the one in the Yerba Buena Gardens with its new additions and some structures that have been replaced. You will find also one of the favorite slide of the city as the expert told us ;-)



The one you will not forget…

Mission Dolores Park Dolores Street at 19th Street

Neighborhood: Mission Dolores

Beside the construction at the down side of the park, you could always enjoy the upside playground … one of the most sunny and playful of the city.

We especially enjoy the big slide down the hill and the one where many kids can play together, even if these kids are not exactly kids anymore :-)


The swings will give you the feeling to fly over the city…



And the last one…

Playground @ the San Francisco Zoo Sloat Bvd

This one is the most recent one, the newest one.

We especially appreciate the 3 areas, one Artict, one jungle and one for toddlers…

Rubber flooring, a lot of hide and seek, nice climbing…playing there and your children will forget that at the Zoo you could also see animals.


Be aware: you will have to pay the entrance fee to have access to this playground.





You can also take a look at the thorough map on the SFREACPARK website, selecting Children play area and the neighborhood you like in the menu. Click here.



We have not mentioned on purpose the playground on Valencia that kids love especially during warm to hot days. Stay tuned:-)