Ferry Building Marketplace - San Francisco

Ferry Building

One of San Francisco’s most treasured and historic spots is the beautiful Ferry Building.  The Ferry Building Marketplace, first opened in 1898, is conveniently located on one of San Francisco’s most picturesque boulevards, The Embarcadero.  With gorgeous waterfront views of the San Francisco Bay, Treasure Island, Alcatraz, the Bay Bridge, the Golden Gate Bridge, and Yerba Buena Island, this is the perfect place to snap some frame-worthy photos.

As the terminal for ferries as well as the hub for public transit, MUNI and BART, and the home of the San Francisco Farmer’s Market, the Ferry Building is one of the best places to people watch in the city.  

ferry building

Once you step inside the dramatic doors of the Ferry Building, you are bathed in natural sunlight filled from the gorgeous steel-frame glass ceiling.  Continue down the main indoor street, called Nave, and you will find gourmet chocolate & cheese boutiques (like Cowgirl Creamery, Recchiuti Confections, and Scharffen Berger Chocolate Maker), pastry and bread shops (Miette, Frog Hollow Farm and Acme Bread Company), and other exotic merchants (Hog Island Oyster Company and Far West Fungi).  Walking down the Nave, you will also find the Market Halls, occupied with gourmet restaurants, posh boutiques, and other spectacular vendors.  The Ferry Buildings most respected restaurants include the Slanted Door, Gott’s Roadside, and Market Bar.  If you’re in need of some delicious dessert, stop by Ciao Bella for some creamy gelato.

ferry building market

For the best Ferry Building Marketplace experience, stop by on a Tuesday or Saturday.  Not only will you get to experience the Farmer’s Market, but the Ferry Building offers free walking tours starting at noon.  The Farmer’s Market, hosted by the Center for Urban Education about Sustainable Agriculture, supports local farmers from the surrounding areas, and is open to the public Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays.   Stop by on Thursdays for fresh grilled meat and pizzas, while Saturdays include freshly cooked meals from local restaurants in addition to the produce provided by local farmers.
ferry buildling dining

The Ferry Building is also a great place to catch the world famous trolley cars that run through the streets of San Francisco.  Cable car and trolley rates are $2 per ride or $6 for an all-day MUNI pass, which is good for cable cars, trolleys, and buses).  The cable cars stop in Chinatown, Downtown shopping centers, North Beach, Nob Hill, Fisherman’s Wharf, and Pier 39.  Also within walking distance of the Ferry Building is the Embarcadero Center, which is home to 2 hotels, over 100 shops and restaurants, and the Kristi Yamaguchi Holiday Ice Rink, which is now open for the winter season.
The Ferry Building Marketplace is truly the gateway into San Francisco, geographically and culturally.
The Ferry Building is open Monday through Friday from 10:00am to 6:00pm, Saturday from 9:00am to 6:00pm, and Sunday from 11:00am to 5:00pm.


By: Natalie Grinnell Copyright sfTravel LLC