Selecting the perfect spot to propose can seem daunting, and for good reason—it’s one of those places you really will remember forever. Even though it’s a monumental choice, it doesn’t need to cause you any stress. Whether you envision a beachside bonfire, a cliff front declaration of love, a romantic meal, or a luscious garden, the options in San Francisco are endless.
Home to a garden for everyone’s taste, Golden Gate Park has gorgeous flowers blooming year-round. Take a stroll over to the Conservatory of Flowers, a spectacular Victorian glass structure home to over 1,700 species of tropical plants and a Butterfly Zone, or visit The Japanese Tea Garden (the oldest in the United States) to soak up the traditional architecture, gardens, and cherry trees. After your walk, enjoy a cup of tea and sample popular Japanese treats before (or in celebration of) making your engagement official.
If your SO is a fan of romantic history and dreamy woods, there’s no better place to propose than at Lover’s Lane. Located in the Presidio of the San Francisco Bay, this eucalyptus forest is known to be the place of love stories. It’s said that the soldiers stationed in the Presidio would sneak down the path to visit their lovers in the Mission District. If you picture a perfect proposal doused in the love stories of the past and sunlight shining through the trees, Lover’s Lane is the ideal spot to ask your love for their hand.
If having the Golden Gate Bridge as the backdrop to your marriage proposal is important (especially if your love story started in the area), the best spot in San Francisco for uninhibited views is Baker Beach. The small, sandy strip is usually free from tourists during the week (it gets more crowded on the weekends, so arrive early if you’re planning a non-weekday proposal), which will make it even easier to get the perfect view as you propose. Coordinate with your photographer (if you plan on having one) to get the best view and element of surprise.
Few spots in San Francisco are as spellbinding as the Palace of Fine Arts (which is saying something, since the city is home to the Golden Gate Bridge). The historical monument was built in 1915 for the World's Fair, and its Roman-inspired architecture makes it an astounding backdrop for a proposal. The romantic spot turns from tan to gold at sunset, which makes it even more mesmerizing for the start of your engagement.
Fans of vast vistas are in for a treat with Mount Davidson, San Francisco’s tallest natural peak. Located right in the middle of the city, the 928-foot elevation gives you a sweeping view of the entire bay. The short hike is easy and well shaded, and the huge cross located at the top of the peak is a wonderful backdrop of those with spiritual affiliation.
If sandy shores, salty air, sunset views, and intimate vibes are on your proposal must-haves checklist, Ocean Beach might be just what you’re searching for. Nestled next to the Pacific Ocean, this idyllic spot is a local fave, thanks to the designated fire pits and gorgeous vistas. Light a bonfire, snuggle next to your SO, and watch the sunset for a proposal your partner will brag about for a lifetime.
The observation deck at Coit Tower provides unimpeded vistas of both the Golden Gate Bridge and the Bay Bridge, as well as a sweeping perspective of the entire city. Since the tower is one of the more popular landmarks in San Francisco, the private balcony is the perfect spot to propose. Call ahead to get access to the spot, and consider asking the staff for a special tour or romantic extras.
If you picture proposing over an elegant dinner, the Cliff House is the best answer for a once-in-a-lifetime experience. The scenic setting offers views from every angle and houses two restaurants, a cafe, a bar, and hiking trails overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Extra bonus: There are plenty of spots on-site to grab a glass of Champagne and celebrate your new engagement.
What better way to start the rest of your life together than at the famous Land’s End, a spot locals still frequent time and time again after their first visits. The relatively easy two-mile trail follows along the coastline and provides stunning views of The Golden Gate Bridge. At the end of the trail, there’s a mystical labyrinth overlooking the crashing waves below, making for a truly perfect place to propose.
Whether you propose amongst the flowers at Golden Gate Park, overlooking the city at Coit Tower, or snuggled in the sand at Ocean Beach, San Francisco has a wide assortment of locations for supremely special engagements.