San Francisco Museums

de Young Museum

50 Hagiwara Tea Garden Drive
San Francisco
CA 94118
(Golden Gate Park)

Comprising the de Young Museum in Golden Gate Park and the Legion of Honor in Lincoln Park, the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco is the largest public arts institution in the City of San Francisco and one of the largest art museums in the United States.

Open Tuesday - Sunday 9:30am - 5:15pm (closed Mondays)

Free: first Tuesday of the month 

Asian Art Museum of San Francisco

200 Larkin Street
San Francisco, CA 94102
(Civic Center Area)
Telephone: (415) 581-3500

With over 15,000 works, covering a timespan of 6000 years, San Francisco's Asian art Museum is devoted exclusively to art from Asia. Previously located in Golden Gate Park, the museum moved to its present location in the Civic Center near the San francisco City Hall in 2003.

Monday | Closed
Tuesday | 10AM–5PM
Wednesday | 10AM–5PM
Thursday | 10AM–9PM
Friday | 10AM–5PM
Saturday | 10AM–5PM

Free: first Sunday of the month

Contemporary Jewish Museum

736 Mission Street
San Francisco, CA 94103
Telephone: (415) 344-8800
(South of Market Area)

Cartoon Art Museum

655 Mission Street. (between 3rd & New Montgomery)
San Francisco, CA 94105
(South of Market Area)
Telephone: (415) CAR-TOON (227-8666)
The Cartoon Art Museum exhibits cartoon art in its various forms, and includes a permanent collection as well as rotating exhibits and special events. The museum also holds cartooning classes for kids on the weekends, as well as cartooning camps in the summer.
Free first Tuesday of the month

Museum of Perforfance and Design

Yerba Buena Center for the Arts

Yerba Buena Gardens
Between 3rd & 4th/Mission & Howard
San Francisco, CA 94103
(South of Market District)
Telephone: (415) 978-2787
The Yerba Buena Center for the Arts is a multi-disciplinary venue offering exhibits, art galleries, performance space, film and video presentations, as well as public programs.
Galleries Free first Tuesday of the month.

Museum of Craft and Design

Walt Disney Family Museum

California Academy of Sciences

Beat Museum

540 Broadway (at Columbus)
San Francisco, CA 94133
Telephone: (800) KER-OUAC
(North Beach)
A small, one-room museum with artifacts from the Beat era. The Beat Museum's collection includes photos, letters, a signed copy of Ginsberg's Howl, and Neal Cassady's striped referee-style shirt.

Cable Car Barn and Museum

1201 Mason Street (at Washington)
San Francisco, CA 94108
Telephone: (415) 474-1887
See the actual working cables and sheaves of the San Francisco cable car system. The museum also has historic displays, information about the operation of cable cars, informational video, and gift shop. Exhibits are free.

Legion of Honor

34th Avenue & Clement Street
San Francisco, CA 94121
Telephone (24 hours): (415) 863-3330
(Richmond District)
The Legion of Honor is a fine arts museum in the gorgeous location of Lands End. Renovated in the 90s, the Legion added square footage, skylights and environmental upgrades, and houses an art collection spanning the centuries – including Near East antiquities, European painting, and a Rodin sculptures (including the prominent cast of Rodin's Thinker in the Legion's courtyard). The Legion has rotating exhibits, ongoing tours and special events, and also a café.
Free first Tuesday of the month.

Musee Mecanique

Pier 45 at the end of Taylor Street
San Francisco, CA 94133
Telephone: (415) 346-2000
(Fisherman's Wharf)
The Musee Mecanique is a unique arcade at Pier 45, filled with antique musical instruments, arcade games and posted stories covering some of San Francisco's history. Link to a full profile below.

Museum of the African Diaspora

685 Mission Street (at 3rd)
San Francisco, CA 94105
(South of Market District)
Telephone: (415) 358-7200
MoAD is a beautiful and modern museum, with multi-media installations and traditional exhibit spaces. Visitors learn about the African Diaspora: "The scattering of people from Africa and the sowing of their cultures globally."

Museum of Craft and Folk Art

51 Yerba Buena Lane (at Mission, between 3rd & 4th)
(South of Market Area)
San Francisco, CA 94103
Telephone: (415) 227-4888
Through a wide variety of exhibits, the museum creates visual connections between traditional arts and crafts, and other forms of fine art. Past exhibits have ranged from African-American quilt-making to world puppet art and Native American glass work.

Pacific Heritage Museum

608 Commercial Street
San Francisco, CA 94103
Tel: (415) 227-4888
(Financial District)
San Francisco's Pacific Heritage Museum is in the US Subtreasury Building (1875)-- at the location of the original San Francisco Mint.
The Pacific Heritage Museum's exhibits document the history and significance of the Branch Mint and Subtreasury buildings over time. You'll find architectural plans, coins, photos and other related artifacts.

San Francisco Fire Department Museum

655 Presidio Avenue (between Pine & Bush)
San Francisco, CA 94115
(Pacific Heights)
Telephone: (415) 563-4630
Through a collection of documents and other memorabilia, the museum records and preserves the history of the San Francisco Fire Department. The exhibits include fire-fighting equipment and artifacts from the 1800s and the 1906 earthquake.

San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park

Hyde Street Pier at Aquatic Park
2905 Hyde Street (at the foot of Hyde)
(Fisherman's Wharf)
Telephone: (415) 447-5000
Although the Maritime Museum Building is closed for renovation until 2009, the Maritime National Historical Park offers both indoor and outdoor activities throughout the year: The historical ships at Hyde Pier, special events, and guided tours. The Visitors Center (free) also offers informative exhibits on maritime history in San Francisco.

San Francisco Museum of Craft and Design

550 Sutter Street (between Mason & Powell)
San Francisco, CA 94102
(Nob Hill)
Telephone: (415) 773-0303
Opened in 2004, the Museum of Craft and Design focuses on crafts and objects of design, and their integration in our lives. An example is the Tools as Art exhibit held in 2007, which celebrated common tools and hardware through artists who incorporated the tools in their imagery.
Free first Thursday of the month

San Francisco Railway Museum

77 Steuart Street (near Ferry Building)
San Francisco, CA 94105
Telephone: (415) 974-1948
The Railway Museum features artifacts related to San Francisco's history of rail transit. The small museum space houses a photographic collection and audio-visual displays. You can also purchase interesting railway-related memorabilia and gifts, including books, DVDs and posters.

Wells Fargo History Museum

420 Montgomery Street
San Francisco, CA 94163
(Financial District)
Tel: (415) 396-2619
The San Francisco branch of the Wells Fargo History Museum is one of several throughout the U.S. Exhibits inside relate to the history of Wells Fargo, to Gold Rush finances, and stage coaches and robbers.
You'll find an 1860s Concord Coach (visible through the window from Montgomery Street). Exhibits are accompanied by descriptions and other visual artifacts. If you're interested in the early express companies and Gold Rush era correspondence, the museum has a selection of items from this period in history.