The cobblestone walkways and overflowing gardens of Macondray Lane create a rare garden oasis in the middle of San Francisco. Between ferns and flowers, look closely and you may even see a small grotto with a pond. Climb the wooden steps at the end of the lane (near Taylor Street) for some of the best bay views in the city.
Fans of Armistead Maupin's Tales of the City series may recognize the area (known as Barbary Lane in the books). Various scenes were set here and come to life for many who visit. Some San Francisco walking tours that include Russian Hill incorporate a stroll down Macondray Lane.
Things to know before you go
- For more panoramic bay views, turn right on Taylor Street and continue walking a block uphill to Ina Coolbrith Park.
- People live on Macondray Lane, so be respectful of neighborhood residents.
- Most of the stairways leading up from the lane are private property.
- The lane has stairs and uneven stones and is not wheelchair-accessible.
How to get there
Macondray Lane is located in the Russian Hill neighborhood of San Francisco. It runs parallel between Union and Green Streets and connects Leavenworth and Taylor streets. It is accessible only on foot. Consider catching a ride-share or cable car to the top of Russian Hill, as the walk up is quite steep.
When to get there
The lane is always open, but out of respect for residents and to appreciate the views, visit during daylight hours.