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San Francisco Sights

Ferry Building

  • Transportation Site (Airport, Bus, Ferry, Train)
  • Fodor's Choice

Updated 05/05/2014

Fodor's Review

The jewel of the Embarcadero, erected in 1896, is topped by a 230-foot clock tower modeled after the campanile of the cathedral in Seville, Spain. On the morning of April 18, 1906, the tower's four clock faces, powered by the swinging of a 14-foot pendulum, stopped at 5:17—the moment the great earthquake struck—and stayed still for 12 months.

Today San Franciscans flock to the street-level marketplace, stocking up on supplies from local favorites such as Acme

Bread, Scharffen Berger Chocolate, Cowgirl Creamery, and Blue Bottle Coffee. Lucky diners claim a coveted table at Slanted Door, the beloved high-end Vietnamese restaurant. The seafood bar at Hog Island Oyster Company has fantastic bay view panoramas, including the Bay Bridge. On Saturday morning the plazas outside the building buzz with an upscale farmers' market where you can buy exotic sandwiches and other munchables. Extending south from the piers north of the building all the way to the Bay Bridge, the waterfront promenade out front is a favorite among joggers and picnickers, with a front-row view of sailboats plying the bay. True to its name the Ferry Building still serves actual ferries: from its eastern flank they sail to Sausalito, Larkspur, Tiburon, and the East Bay.

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Sight Information


Embarcadero at foot of Market St., San Francisco, California, 94111, United States



Updated 05/05/2014


What's Nearby

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  • Sights

Fodorite Reviews

Average Rating
  • Service

  • Food

  • Décor

  • Value

Nov 2, 2009

Ferry Building Review

Don't miss the Farmers Market. Great food, and great place to buy food for a picnic. You can easily spend the entire morning here.

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