Located next to the popular Marina Green and Crissy Field, the San Francisco Marina provides a scenic launch and destination for paddlers. The high quality facilities and amenities, along with the location near the Golden Gate, make the Marina an ideal launching point for exploration of the San Francisco waterfront or destinations beyond the Golden Gate. The Marina is managed by San Francisco Recreation and Parks.
The Marina’s small boat launch facilities are located behind a locked gate within the Marina, with access to this area open to the public upon request. Access to the Marina’s high-freeboard docks is via an ADA gangway that leads to a low-float accessible EZ Launch Accessible Transfer System kayak launch on the eastern side of the dock. This system includes guide rails for easy access in and out of the water, launch rollers, and a transfer bench and transfer slide boards that allow users to sit, slide over and drop down into a kayak or canoe then use the side rails to pull off or back on.
The gate to the public dock is locked to protect private boats, requiring that users obtain a key from the marina offices located adjacent to the top of the ADA gangway. Users can sign out a key card free of charge for access through the gate to the dock. Users must return the key upon returning from their paddle. Keys can be checked out for multiple days if longer trips are planned.
Directions and Parking
The Marina Green and associated parking facilities are available to the general public. All vehicle parking is subject to availability and is on a first come first served basis. General public “non-permitted” vehicle parking is free between the hours of 6:00 am to 10:00 pm. Parking on weekends is often at capacity.
From Marin County, take the Golden Gate Bridge (Highway 101) to exit 437 for Marina Boulevard. Turn right onto Girard Road then continue onto Marina Boulevard for approximately 0.5 miles then turn left onto Scott Street.
From the East Bay, take Interstate 80 into San Francisco, existing onto Fremont Street. From there turn right on Howard Street, then left onto The Embarcadero. From there turn left onto Bay Street, turn right onto Laguna Street, which turns into Marina Boulevard. From Marina Boulevard turn right onto Scott Street.
There are public ADA restrooms located at the Marina offices, located near the west gangway.
San Francisco Recreation and Parks provides a variety of shoreside facilities at the popular Marina Green park, including expansive lawns, benches, bike racks, and trails. Drinking fountains are located near the Marina offices.
The San Francisco Marina has been designed to meet ADA standards. Facilities include an accessible gangway that leads to a dock with transition plates. The gangway has a gentle slope and handrails. The dock has transition plates and the surface is smooth. The kayak launch includes a low-float dock with handbars, rollers, and a transfer system.
This site provides ADA parking spaces and a paved path of travel from the parking area located approximately 600 feet south of the boat launch.
Conditions outside the Marina can quickly become very hazardous. Strong winds and currents are frequent conditions, so boaters must be sure to stay within their abilities and are advised to stay close to the shoreline. Attempting to cross the Golden Gate is not recommended for inexperienced paddlers.
Additionally, large vessels regularly use the shipping channels through the Golden Gate – boaters must always avoid impeding large vessels in shipping channels. The US Coast Guard regularly patrols the Golden Gate, including monitoring by camera.
Alcatraz Island is approximately 1.6 miles from the Marina. Alcatraz is a sanctuary for seabirds such as cormorants and pigeon guillemots, and for waterbirds such as snowy egrets and black-crowned night herons.
Due to the importance of the island for nesting birds, paddlers are prohibited from landing on Alcatraz Island. The Water Trail recommends boaters maintain a buffer distance of 650 feet from nesting colonies of birds and 800 feet from large groups of floating waterbirds. To help you visualize what these distances mean, 100 feet is approximately the distance of six sea kayaks.