Romantic San Francisco Bay Area Guide
Visitors to the San Francisco Bay Area have virtually endless options when it comes to things to do do. Needless to say, couples have their own plethora of choices when it comes to finding romantic activities in Northern California.
The Bay Area is a huge stretch of area in Northern California which spans from the city of San Francisco to the cities surrounding The Bay, including: Richmond, Berkeley, Oakland and down to San Jose. There are loads of little cities in between and some may even consider Napa as part of this region, but we’ll keep it to the areas right along The Bay that offer some unique and exciting things to do with your significant other.
Below you can find some of our top choices for some dreamy, adventurous and just plain fun stuff you can do with your date in San Francisco, Berkeley, and Oakland! We’ll even throw in some extras at the bottom so make sure you keep reading!
Romantic San Francisco Activities
Walk The Golden Gate Bridge
What better way to get your blood flowing and your heart pumping than walking over one of the most iconic bridges in the world? The Golden Gate Bridge is just under two miles, making it it really walkable. Though you can bike over it as well, we would recommend a stroll on this famous bridge and taking in the breathtaking views of the Pacific Ocean on one side and waters of The Bay followed by cities on the other.
Don’t feel like walking? Book Golden Gate Bridge cruise.
Ride A Cable Car
Without a doubt, taking a ride on one San Francisco’s cable cars will get the romance flowing. Some might argue this is one of those touristy things to do in San Francisco, but as locals, we’ve always enjoyed doing it. The historic cable cars not only offer a nostalgic experience but as you glide up and over the hills, you’ll be presented with dazzling views all around!
Don’t forget to steal a kiss as you ride together through the city!
Picnic in Front of Painted Ladies
If you ever watched the old 90’s TV show “Full House,” you’d probably be familiar with the row of colorful houses referred to as The Painted Ladies. Well, did you know that there’s a park located directly on the other side of the street where you can get a great view of these fun looking houses with the backdrop of the city?
Alamo Square Park is the perfect place for a little romantic picnic. Just bring a blanket, some cheese and crackers, maybe some grapes and your other favorite snacks and simply enjoy a nice time with your partner in this fantastic location.
California Academy of Sciences At Night
Get the nocturnal version of the museum on Thursday nights for about half the price of their regular day admission. You get in cheaper and you get to have the benefit of grabbing some adult beverages while you explore and learn together! It’s one of the top things to do in San Francisco at night.
Skip the line and book your ticket to California Academy of Science online.
Grab a Bite At A Unique Spot On The Bay
The Ferry Building At Embarcadero allows visitors to pick from several different eateries all in one place. There are some very unique and tasty treats to enjoy there together so go hungry!
Grab a little bit of everything at the market place and don’t forget desert.
The Ferry Building can be reached by MUNI, BART and Ferry Boat. The historic trolley cars (Line F Market) stop right in front of the building, making it even more fun to get to!
You can always join a food tour to The Ferry Building to experience SF as a local.
Berkeley Date Ideas
Feel Like You’re In Venice At The Campanile Tower Of UCB
The world’s third tallest bell and clock tower is located on the University of California Berkeley campus and is visible from miles away. The Campanile Tower is officially called Sather Tower, but got its nickname due to its resemblance to the one in Venice, Italy.
It’s a cheap way to have some fun with your date while hanging out in Berkeley. You can ride the elevator up for just $4 and get some pretty stunning views of the Bay Area from up there!
Pizza & Beer That’s Out Of This World
After spending some time touring the UC Berkeley Campus and hanging out at the funky Telegraph Avenue (Check out Amoeba for some old school vinyl records), head over to the brewhouse that totes award-winning pizza for a magical date night. Jupiter is the perfect place to take your partner for amazing atmosphere and food in Berkeley.
A Complete Day At The Berkeley Marina
One of the best ways to enjoy The Bay is a visit to the Berkeley Marina. The huge waterfront area offers parks, picnic areas, trails, and even an area for your doggies!
Furthermore, after spending the day enjoying panoramic views of The Bay with the San Francisco skyline in the background, you can have an upscale dining experience on the water at Skates On The Bay. But don’t rush because there’s even the option to spend the night at a hotel by the waterfront!
Oakland Fun and Food With Your Love
Friday Night At Oakland Museum
For an amazing Friday night date idea, try out the Oakland Museum after hours gallery access from 5pm to 9pm. It’s a complete package with food trucks serving some yummy bites, artists playing fantastic beats, and even a marketplace!
The best part is that you don’t even need to drive, you can just take BART (train/subway) there and enjoy some drinks on your date without needing a designated driver!
Jack London Square
The waterfront location of this destination creates the perfect location for dining, shopping, and strolling with your partner. For an evening out in the Bay Area, Jack London Square offers a variety of restaurants to choose from and offers fun events throughout the year. There are even markets and outdoor movie nights in the summer season!
Lake Merritt Love And Gondolas
The cities around The Bay get the benefit of the waterfront, but in Oakland, you also get a lake to enjoy!
There is a trail around the lake as well as some upscale dining. However, the area surrounding Lake Merritt offers some of the most romantic restaurants in San Francisco Bay Area!
We recommend starting off with an exquisite brunch at Grand Lake Kitchen and then taking a stroll around the lake and enjoying the vibrant energy of joggers and cyclists in this beautiful natural environment. For lunch, check out Bacheesos lunch buffet and you won’t be disappointed!.
Rap up your romantic day at Lake Merritt with a romantic gondola ride!
Redwood Regional Park Hike
If you and your partner are the outdoorsy types, you’ll love a day out at Redwood Regional Park. The giant trees and serene nature of this place is sure to get you some bonding time.
More Bay Area Romantic Date Ideas
Golden Gate Views – See the bridge and Bay (perfect for popping the question!) from several different viewpoints on either side.
Wine Tasting On Treasure Island – Another place to get some great views and have some tasty wine with your date.
Sausalito – A little town just north of San Francisco with shops and food all in a cute little package!
Dinner On The Bay – Get on a cruise for the night and have a romantic time sailing and dining on the water.
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This post is written by a fellow travel blogger, Taiss Nowrouzi from Together to Wherever. All the photos are Taiss’s as well.