De Young Museum

This famous fine arts museum in Golden Gate Park was founded in the 19th century and boasts a collection dating back to the 1600s.

The de Young Museum is one of the most visited art museums in North America. Opened in 1895, it showcases a vast collection of art, textiles and costumes predominantly from the Americas, the Pacific and Africa.

Major earthquakes have taken their toll on this area through the years, and the museum was renovated in 2005. Now, the more modern structure is complete with a 144-foot (44-meter) tower that’s a prominent part of the San Francisco skyline.

A stroll through the de Young is like a tour through the history of American painting. Don't miss works by iconic American artists such as John Copley, Frederick Church and Thomas Hovenden. Also look out for a famous son of the Bay Area, Japanese-American painter Chiura Obata. He’s one of many whose works celebrate great Californian art.

Take the time to view the de Young textile collection, one of the largest in the United States. Exhibits include Turkmen carpets and 12th-century Asian silks through to modern garments designed by Dior and Chanel.

De Young Museum is located in the heart of the Golden Gate Park, within easy reach of the rest of the city. There’s paid parking available nearby and limited spaces on the surrounding streets. Take the San Francisco Municipal bus (MUNI) to Golden Gate Park to receive a discount on adult entry to the museum. The Golden Gate shuttle bus stops at the museum and other attractions within the park. Another good way to get to the museum is to rent a bike, which will also make it easier to explore the rest of the park.

The de Young is open Tuesday through Sunday with doors kept open later on Friday evenings from March until November. The museum is closed on major holidays.