Coit Tower: San Francisco’s Historic Viewpoint

The 210 foot Coit Tower, which sits in the middle of San Francisco, is a great place to get a bird’s eye view of the city. This memorial was built in 1933 after Lillie Hitchcock donated one-third of her estate to the city to help with its beautification. It has now become one of San Francisco’s most popular tourist attractions, and it is a fun spot to explore in the city.  Here is all the information.


  • Cost: $8
  • Hours: Daily 10 AM – 5 PM
  • Must be able to climb 40 steps
  • Location: 1 Telegraph Hill Blvd, San Francisco, CA 94133

Getting There

San Francisco is a notoriously difficult city to drive around in, so I recommend you take public transit and walk or an Uber / Lyft. I took in Uber when I went, but you can take public transit and walk up the stairs on Greenwich St to the base of the monument.

Coit Memorial Tower

Upon entering the tower, you will see many of the 27 murals that were painted on the first floor of the building and that become one of its main attractions.

It is free to go into the first floor and look at these historic paintings. I was impressed with how beautiful and detailed they were as I wandered around and looked at them.

After seeing the murals, I paid for my ticket and got in line for the elevator. Since this is a touristy spot and the top is not that big, you will most likely be waiting. It took about 20 minutes for me to get into the elevator. While waiting, you can see more of the murals though, so it is relatively pleasent.

After being packed into the elevator, we made it to the top and got off with two floors of stairs left to get to the top.

This is where they always let off, as the elevator doesn’t even go all the way up.

When you take the staircase to the top, you are greeted with a fantastic 360-degree view of the city.

Each part of the circle has a set of three windows, so there are more than enough for people to look and take photos through when at the top of the tower.

Here are some of my favorite views:


You can see the famous island great from up here, as well as Pier 33, which is where you leave on the boat to tour the island from.

The Bay Bridge

It is small in the distance, but it is always fun to see this historic bridge.

Downtown San Francisco

The massive buildings that make up the downtown block are impressive to see from this height.

Russian Hill

I liked the way the roads all lead your eye towards the hill while you were looking down on it.

Treasure Island

This famous Island off the Bay Bridge is another fun site to see from the top of the Coit Tower.

When you are done exploring, you will head back down the stairs and wait for your turn to get in the elevator back to the bottom.

As you can see, this is a fun spot to explore in the city, and even though it is very touristy, it is still worth the money. Be sure to bring your zoom lens if you go though! Let me know what you think in the comments.

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