ier 39 is a shopping center and popular tourist attraction built on a pier in San Francisco. At Pier 39, there are many shops, restaurants, a video arcade, street performances, an interpretive center for the Marine Mammal Center, the Aquarium of the Bay, virtual 3D rides, and views of California sea lions sunning themselves out on docks on Pier 39’s marina.
The Pier 39 marina is also home to the floating Forbes Island restaurant. A two-story carousel is one of the pier’s more notable features, although it is not directly visible from the street and sits towards the end of the pier. Family-oriented entertainment and the presence of marine mammals such as the seals make this a popular stop for families with kids.
Located at the edge of the Fisherman’s Wharf district, Pier 39 is close to North Beach, Chinatown, and the Embarcadero. The area is easily accessible via the historic F Market streetcars. From the pier you can see Angel Island, Alcatraz, the Golden Gate Bridge, and the Bay Bridge.
PIER 39 SEA LIONS
California Sea Lions have been always present in San Francisco Bay. They started to haul out on docks of Pier 39 in September 1989. Before that they mostly used Seal Rock for that purpose. Ever since September 1989 the number of sea lions on Seal Rock has been steadily decreasing, while their number on Pier 39 has generally increased. Some people speculate that sea lions moved to docks because of the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake, but the earthquake occurred months after the first sea lions had arrived at Pier 39. It is likely that the sea lions feel safer inside the Bay.
Although the reason for their migration to the pier is unclear, the refurbishing of the docks in September 1989 required the removal of all boats from that area, leaving large open spaces for the sea lions to move into. Once the project was completed, boat owners returned, but did their best to navigate around the sea lions; no efforts were made to encourage the new guests to leave.
LOCATION: The Embarcadero, San Francisco, CA 415) 705-5500
Website • 8.4 miles From Hotel