8 San Francisco Restaurants with a View You Have to See

Striking San Francisco views are everywhere you look in the city—between buildings, over hilltop crests, and especially at the water’s edge. But discovering San Francisco restaurants with a view is a thrilling and delicious bonus.

Experience the flavors of San Francisco while connecting with the spectacular sights and sounds around you. We’ve curated the ultimate list of the top eight San Francisco restaurants with a view. Each presents a unique view of the city, from the wilds of the Pacific Ocean to the neighborly embrace of the Mission District, you’ll feel the heart of San Francisco. 

A view of cable car on a sloping street in San Francisco with a bridge in the background peeking in between buildings
The views in San Francisco are next level. Photo credit: Amogh Manjunath

Mersea (Treasure Island)

Mersea, is a San Francisco restaurant with a view from the middle of the Bay on the Treasure Island shoreline. The artificial island was built for the 1939 Golden Gate International Exposition. It is accessible by car from the San Francisco Bay Bridge or a short ferry boat ride from the San Francisco Ferry Building. 

Constructed from shipping containers arranged around an outdoor courtyard for dining, Mersea is a casual dining option with low-key vibes. Enjoy seasonal ingredients in dishes like juicy burgers, crispy fish and chips, pizza, and tacos while sipping a hand-crafted cocktail. Expansive views of the bay and city skyline stretch all around, beautiful by day and night.

Nighttime view of the San Francisco skyline and Bay Bridge
The views of San Francisco from Treasure Island are well worth the trip. Photo credit: Pargon

Top of the Mark (Nob Hill) 

Peering down from the Top of the Mark, a historic cocktail lounge on the 19th floor of The Mark Hopkins Hotel atop Nob Hill, an incredible 360-degree view of the city unfolds. This lounge with a view offers a thrilling vantage point to spy distant clanging cable cars below, across the way to Grace Cathedral, and out to the Transamerica Pyramid and the Bay Bridge beyond.  

Founded in 1939, Top of the Mark serves retro-inspired cocktails with names like The InterContinental 75, Aviation, and Grapefruit Collins. For an elegant after-dinner dessert, try the highly curated “tableside experience” featuring vodka and chocolate truffle pairings. Whether sipping a nightcap or indulging in caviar and wine, Top of the Mark is the most elegant perch in the city to imbibe.

Colorful cocktails with orange garnishes on a black table
With 100 margarita options at Top of the Mark, you can certainly sit and sip for hours while taking in the view. Photo credit: Supermac1961

Beach Chalet (Golden Gate Park) 

The Beach Chalet is a San Francisco restaurant with an infinite view of the Pacific Ocean. Just across the Great Highway from the rolling sand dunes of Ocean Beach, this chic modern restaurant and bar occupies the second floor of a 1925 historic landmark building. Its walls are covered in depression-era fresco murals, and fanciful carvings of mythical creatures decorate the staircase up to the restaurant. 

From the Beach Chalet’s beach-facing windows, watch beach goers play in the sand by day, the sunset in the evening, and bonfires dance after dark. The ocean sets the restaurant’s atmosphere from gray and brooding to sun-filled glory. The coastal-inspired menu pairs well with any mood: Chalet Cioppino (a tomato-based seafood stew), red wine braised short rib, seafood deviled eggs, and Dungeness crab melt. 

Extreme close up of a bowl of cioppino, a tomato-based seafood stew with clams
Cioppino is a must-try when in San Francisco. Photo credit: Karen Neoh

Park Chalet (Golden Gate Park) 

Sister restaurant to the Beach Chalet, Park Chalet is located on the first floor of the historic Golden Gate Park visitors’ center. The view from this San Francisco restaurant offers a glimpse into the depths of the city’s most beloved park. Chill on the park-facing lawn or under the glass ceiling atrium.  

Both dining options are perfect for soaking up coastal sun and ocean breezes and relaxing with a house-brewed beer, a cup of clam chowder, and a basket of fish and chips. Look for the nearby Dutch Windmill through the trees to the north and dream about what’s down one of Golden Gate Park’s many paths. After fueling up on classic coastal fare, there’s a big decision to make, park or beach?

Dynamo Donut + Coffee (Marina District) 

Locals jogging along the Crissy Field shoreline struggle with the temptation to swing by the Dynamo Donut + Coffee kiosk, but you don’t. You’re on vacation! Watch cargo ships roll in under the Golden Gate Bridge with a fun-to-devour artisanal doughnut and cup of coffee in hand.  

Find the Dynamo Donut + Coffee at the Little Marina Green Picnic Area. This San Francisco restaurant with a view sets out café tables to catch boating action viewing and to spot the nearby domed top of The Palace of Fine Arts. 

Inventive seasonal doughnut flavors await. Bite into handmade goodness like a maple bacon apple doughnut sprinkled with bacon topping or a vanilla milk chocolate doughnut dusted with sea salt. 

A glass pastry case with bacon maple glaze donuts inside
Dynamo Donut + Coffee is known for their quirky flavor combinations. Photo credit: Ann Larie Valentine

Greens Restaurant (Fort Mason) 

Out of all the San Francisco restaurants with a view, Greens Restaurant’s floor-to-ceiling windows perfectly frame the bBay’s seascape. Occupying a repurposed military warehouse at Fort Mason, a Civil War-era coastal defense fort, Greens is part of a thriving hub of arts organizations. Watch boats cruise through the harbor and the Marin Headlands dazzle across the bay while tasting the freshest produce around. 

Greens, a pioneering vegetarian restaurant, has been elevating vegetarian cuisine and teaching guests how to celebrate the vegetable since 1979. Greens uses locally farmed seasonal produce, so their ingredients are always at peak flavor. While savoring a piece of cornbread with black bean chili or a slice of kimchi and corn pizza, relax and enjoy the ever-changing waterfront scenery.

Docked sailboats lined up on the water of the San Francisco Bay with the sunsetting behind the Golden Gate Bridge in the background
The view of the water from Greens is stunning at sunset. Photo credit: pshab

Bistro Boudin (Fisherman’s Wharf) 

Bistro Boudin at Fisherman’s Wharf is an upscale second-floor restaurant overlooking the bay cruise terminal. Do a little sightseeing from this San Francisco restaurant with a view’s balcony patio or window seat. Eye tourists milling around the wharf while listening to dinging fishing boats and barking sea lions. 

Boudin bakers bake San Francisco’s famous Boudin sourdough bread fresh onsite. The downstairs demonstration baking kitchen is a tourist destination in itself. 

Order a Boudin sourdough bread bowl with hot clam chowder downstairs at the café or upstairs. Bistro Boudin pays tribute to Fisherman’s Wharf seafood legacy at its oyster bar and serves comfort foods Dungeness crab mac and cheese, San Francisco-rooted Cioppino, and, of course, thin-crust sourdough pizza.

Close up of a bowl of sourdough gnocchi with lobster and topped with green chives
At Bistro Boudin you might find sourdough in unexpected dishes like sourdough gnocchi with lobster. Photo credit: pengrin

El Techo (Mission District) 

Sitting at a high-top table in El Techo’s al fresco rooftop dining room, you’re in the corazón of San Francisco. El Techo is a perfect spot to take in the view of the surrounding Mission District’s urban scene, including Latino-rooted businesses like the Peruvian arts and crafts store across the street. Mexican food lovers will love El Techo.

Enjoy street-style Latin American dishes like yuca frita (yuca fries), empanadas, and fried plantain. Relax with a cocktail and some friends to settle in and gaze out to downtown San Francisco. Heat lamps and windscreens protect guests from the elements, so there’s no hurry to devour your order of chicharrones de carne (fried pork butt).