San Francisco is filled with vibrant scenes, lush gardens, and historic structures, which all make for great spots to get that perfect shot. Golden Gate Park offers countless attractions that are beautiful and photo-worthy, and you can find many more off the beaten track. For photos featuring natural beauty, you can explore gardens with rare flowers and biomes, waterfalls, and unique features. Bright, bold colours are characteristic of San Francisco, as are historic castles, landmarks, and magnificent views. Here are 10 Instagrammable places in San Francisco where you can fill your feed.

    1

    16th Avenue Tiled Steps

    Take in vibrant mosaic scenes while climbing to a stunning viewpoint

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    16th Avenue Tiled Steps features 163 steps decorated with colourful, handmade mosaic-tiled art on each of the vertical risers, and the steps offer a magnificent view at the top. You can find the steps located at the crossroads of Moraga Street and 16th Avenue. On your walk up, you’ll find many opportunities to snap an Instagram-worthy photo, including a scene of brightly-colored birds, fish, and animals adorning the stairs. You’ll also find an awe-inspiring view of the Sunset district below. While you’re at the top, you may also enjoy a visit to Grandview Park, which features 360-degree views of beautiful San Francisco.

    Location: 16th Ave, San Francisco, CA 94122, USA

    Open: 24/7

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    2

    The Painted Ladies

    Get a great shot of colourful Victorian houses during sunset

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    The Painted Ladies are a photo-worthy row of brightly coloured Victorian houses that ascend a steep hill. The houses are located on the east side of Alamo Square Park, between Steiner and Hayes Streets. The historic houses, featuring 2.5 to 3.5 floors, spacious porches, and numerous balconies, are from the Queen Anne period. You may be able to schedule a tour of one of the homes, but exterior shots of the row are stunning and easy to capture. For the best photos, plan to visit during sunset.

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    Location: Steiner St &, Hayes St, San Francisco, CA 94117, USA

    Open: Daily from 5 am to midnight

    Phone: +1 415-218-0259

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    3

    Conservatory of Flowers

    Walk through galleries of rare and exquisite flowers

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    The Conservatory of Flowers comprises 5 galleries filled with the vibrant colours of 2,000 flowers amidst lush green foliage and features many rare flowers from around the world. You’ll find the conservatory located in Golden Gate Park on John F Kennedy Drive. In the Lowland Tropics gallery, you’ll be surrounded by tropical fruit and other edibles, like chocolate and coffee, as well as lush jungle vegetation, towering bamboo, a massive kapok tree, and flowing waterfalls. The remaining galleries, Potted Plants, Special Exhibits, Aquatic Plants, and Highland Tropics, house magnificent flowers, artfully decorated urns and pots, trees, giant lilies, and plants from around the world.

    Location: 100 John F Kennedy Dr, San Francisco, CA 94118, USA

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    Phone: +1 415-831-2090

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    4

    Japanese Tea Garden

    Stroll around a garden filled with bright flowers and interesting features

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    The Japanese Tea Garden is filled with colourful flower gardens, statues, decorative hedges, and stunning architecture. Near the main entrance, you’ll find hedges pruned into depictions of Mount Fuji and dragons. You won't want to miss the Pagoda, a replica of a Buddist Shrine that features 5 stories of beautiful architecture and sits in front of a vibrant Zen garden with a small waterfall, bonsai trees, and azaleas. The garden can be found in Golden Gate Park on Hagiwara Tea Garden Drive. Other notable features include blooming irises and wisteria, a Drum Bridge, and a Japanese maple that is especially beautiful with the autumn colour changes.

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    Location: 75 Hagiwara Tea Garden Dr, San Francisco, CA 94118, USA

    Open: Daily from 9 am to 4.45 pm

    Phone: +1 415-752-1171

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    5

    Sutro Baths

    Explore ruined baths with a scenic cliffside view

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    The Sutro Baths are the historic ruins of 7 indoor saltwater swimming pools that were filled by San Francisco Bay waters. You’ll find the Sutro Baths at the crossroads of Point Lobos and 48th Avenue, right next to the Cliff House. Photos taken from the disintegrating walls and saltwater pools provide a stunning view as you look past Seal Rock onto the vast ocean waters. You’re allowed to climb over the ruins, but be careful, as it can be a dangerous walk. You’ll follow the tunnel through the cliff to get to a small beach to enjoy.

    Location: 1004 Point Lobos Ave, San Francisco, CA 94121, USA

    Open: 24/7

    Phone: +1 415-426-5240

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    6

    James Turrell Skyspace

    Wander through an art installation with picturesque shadows and colours

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    The James Turrell Skyspace is made up of curved cement walls painted white and coral and was designed to capture the changing sunlight. You can find the skyspace in Golden Gate Park, situated in the sculpture garden of the de Young Museum. The shadows here hit the walls differently as the sun moves across the sky, giving this attraction a different look as the day progresses. For great contrasting pictures, you may want to dress in blue, green, or white clothing.

    Location: Golden Gate Park, San Francisco, CA 94118, USA

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    7

    Japantown

    Take in Japanese culture and enjoy lotus fountains and a 5-story pagoda

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    Japantown is a 6-block area that features vibrant food, cherry blossom trees, and a magnificent Peace Pagoda. You can find Japantown on Geary Boulevard running from Laguna Street to Fillmore Street. As you stroll down the streets, you'll notice the bright-red banners hanging above and the wide variety of street foods, including shabu-shabu, which is a dish of vegetables and meat that is cooked in a Japanese hot pot. The most prominent features of the area are The Peace Pagoda, which is a concrete stupa with 5 tiers, and the bronze lotus Origami Fountains.

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    8

    Ferry Building

    Take in vibrant scenes at a local market in a historic ferry building

    The Ferry Building features homemade food, fresh produce, and fine wines being sold by local vendors in a building with beautiful historical architecture. You’ll find the Ferry Building located on the bay across from Sue Bierman Park. Your senses will come alive with the colourful displays of food, inviting aromas, and sounds of the bustling lunch crowds. Many of the historic building’s features have been restored to their original splendour. Most notable is the 245-foot clock tower, which was built to replicate the Giralda Bell Tower of 12th-century Spain.

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    Location: 1 Ferry Building, San Francisco, CA 94111, USA

    Open: Sunday from 11 am to 5 pm, Monday–Friday from 10 am to 7 pm, Saturday from 8 am to 6 pm

    Phone: +1 415-983-8000

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    9

    Dutch Windmill

    Snap a picture at a massive lighthouse surrounded by tulips

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    Dutch Windmill is an impressive 75 feet tall and stands next to a beautiful tulip garden in Golden Gate Park. The historic windmill was originally built for pumping water but has been out of commission for some time. The weathered exterior shows the age of the magnificent structure and adds to its character. You'll see that the colourful garden with thousands of tulips is what sets the windmill apart and greatly enhances its beauty. The best tulip blooms are in February and March, and if you can visit at the end of April, you may enjoy the King’s Day celebration that features Dutch music, dance, and games.

    Location: 1691 John F Kennedy Dr, San Francisco, CA 94121, USA

    Open: Daily from 5 am to midnight

    Phone: +1 415-263-0991

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    10

    Albion Castle

    Explore a charming castle with an underground cave system

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    Albion Castle features 4 floors to explore, including a system of caves under the castle. You can find the castle tucked away in the Bayview area on Innes Avenue, just a block and a half from the Indian Basin coast. The castle is bordered by large trees and a high fence, providing a quiet reprieve from the busy city. The historic stone structure still holds many original details, such as the living room woodwork, while other areas have been updated. The castle has hosted intimate events, most notably a dinner party and Halloween celebration for Google.

    Location: 881 Innes Ave, San Francisco, CA 94124, USA

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    Phone: +1 650-464-4742

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