This is not a definitive list of tour operators in San Francisco but the major players are represented along with many others who offer a variety of tour types and inclusions and are operators who have good reviews and have proven reliable. Many operators have several tours that they join up to create combination tours and even join up with other operators to have combo’s that might include city tours with a bay cruise or Alcatraz tour. You need to check out each operators website and see what fits your needs.


The official operator: (book in advance____You can do this 90 days in advance)

The list will be updated regularly as new information becomes available.



Short Tours

Grayline Also does a Trolly Hop tour. This tour is in a sort of imitation cable car and only lasts 1¼ hours and obviously only covers a fairly restricted area.

3.5 hour Tours

Standard tours are usually in larger bus and take in all the highlights from 2 hour tours and might add more like Nob Hill, Twin Peaks, Marina District, Palace of Fine Arts and will have stops for photo opportunities etc.

Comprehensive Shuttle Tours does a 3½ tour in shuttle vehicle that includes a Cable Car ride and a guided walk through the Haight District.

Tower Tours


Great Pacific Tours Uses a smaller 13-passenger vehicle and cross the bridge for great photo opportunity from Marin Headlands.

Super Sightseeing Tours

Golden West Tours Golden West Tours also use a 13 passenger vehicle and the tour runs to 4 hours

Vantigo Tours does a 4 hour tour in a 1971 Volkswagon van named Lillie.

A Taste of San Francisco & Beyond specializes in small group tours for a more personal experience -


More Comprehensive Tours

These tours add even more with possible more stops and use smaller shuttle type vehicles. They range from 4½ - 5 hours to a whopping 9 hours combo tour.

Best Bay Area Tours offers you the opportunity to request destinations you have an interest in and they will endeavour to include it in the tour.

Comprehensive Shuttle Tours include a ferry ride to Sausalito and three guided walks in their 5 hour tour and an extra fourth guided walk and cable car ride in their 9 hour combo.

Dylans Tours includes Muir Woods and ends in Sausalito with an option for you to take the Ferry back to the city and also seven photo stops. 


Food Tours 

These are walking tours that also include food tasting. Some cover the history of the neighborhoods as well


Tastes of the City Tours

Gourmet Walks Tours including Chocolate Tours

Avital Food Tours

More food

Foodie Adventures



Theme Tours

Want to see exactly where all the famous movies were shot in San Francisco then the Movie Tour is for you.

Want to experience (or relive) the hippie movement in the Summer of Love with a flower in your hair then the Magic Bus will take you on that trip.

Take a 75 minute breathtaking ride in a big red Mack Fire Engine across the Golden Gate Bridge and more. Kids love it.


Hop On – Hop Off Tours

The selected operators have a variety of loops and stops to choose from.

City Sightseeing is the only operator to go to Sausalito and also has a night tour. They also have a good combo called Freestyle  which includes all loops (including night tour loop) plus you can select three other tours or attractions as well.

Super Sightseeing Tours has a Golden Gate Bridge guided walk included in one loop and entrance to the California Academy of Sciences in another.

Open Top Tours has a night tour as well.

Grayline also does a Hop on Hop off  but only have one real loop. The second loop is basically a drive across the Golden Gate Bridge and then onto Sausalito.


Night Tours

Open Top Tours

City Sightseeing Tours does a 1½ hour night tour.

Vantigo Tours do a 2 hour City Lights Tour in their 1971 Volkswagon Van named Lillie.

Tower Tours does a Twilight Tour that they tack onto other tours.


Bay Cruises

General Bay cruises may be found with either Blue and Gold Fleet or red and White Fleet. Blue and Gold includes the Rocket Boat Ride.

Dining Cruises can be found with Hornblower Cruises

Fun in a Duck cruise and ride with Ride The Ducks Tours


Sailing Cruises

Golden Gate Sailing Cruise

Adventure Cat Cruise


Walking Tours

It’s pretty hard to go past City Guides for walking tours. They are volunteers who love the city and the tours are free but don’t forget to tip. Huge range to choose from.

Others include


Castro District:

Haight District:

                    Also __Haunted Haight Tour

Mission District:

Don Herron Tours

Urban Trek

Victorian Homes Walking Tour

San Francisco Journeys

Architecture Walking Tour

Crooks Tour

Emperor Norton’s Fantastic Time Machine Tour

Wild San Francisco Tours __They claim it's free but be warned they expect a $20 tip

Extranomical Tours also have a lot of walking tours available

Hob Nob Tours

Urban Hiker Tours___


Private Tours

If you want a tour just for you and customized to suit your interests in the city or out of town in numerous destinations you might find what you are looking for with these operators.

Silver Lion

Blue Heron Tours

Alegro Private Tours

A Friend In Town

A Taste of San Francisco & Beyond


Helicopter Tours

San Francisco Helicopters


Seaplane Tours

Seaplane Adventures offers a 30 minute and a 40 minute tour.


Whale Tours

San Francisco Whale Tours offers year round full day tours .


Photo Tours 

Professional photographer Doc Miles will take you to the best locations at the best times to get unforgettable photos.


Bike Tours - Bike Rentals

There are several bike rental operators who offer a variety of self guided routes, guided tours or just rent a bike and do it yourself.

Sports Basement Presidio, directly across the street from the bike path at Crissy Field, is the closest bike rental business to the Golden Gate Bridge.  Sports Basement offers guided tous or you can rent a bike & be on your way.  Rent hybrid, road (carbon or aluminum), kids, electric or tandem bikes.  Capture your day's adventure by renting a Go Pro camera as well.  Sports Basement has free parking, too! 

San Francisco Bike Rentals have three convenient locations in the Haight District near Golden Gate Park, the Cannery at Fishermans Wharf and the Ferry Building and offer a selection of routes you can choose from

Blazing Saddles offers guided tours or just rent a bike and can be found in 7 convenient  locations.

Dylan’s can be found on Columbus Avenue at Greenwich Street close to Fishermans Wharf and North Beach and has a really good daily rate

Bay City Bikes have self guided tours or fully guided tours and can be found at three locations in the Fishermans Wharf area.

Bike and View are located in Lombard Street at Laguna Street in the Marina District and offer a really good online daily flat rate.

Streets of San Francisco Bike Tours are located in Linden Street Hayes Valley and offer a selection of guided tours concentrating on several neighborhoods culture and history. They do not go to the Golden Gate Bridge.

Per's Bike Tours -San Francisco offers guided tours by bicycle. The company does not own their own fleet of bicycles but encourages customers to rent from local merchants or to bring their own bicycle. Bike tours start in the Haight/Golden Gate Park area. They offer 3 tours + customized and private tour options.  


Nature Tours

California Nature Tours offer many tours in many locations.


Others: Are they really tours?

Segways operate with two companies and have a variety of routes along with degrees of difficulty to choose from

Electric Tour Company

City Segway Tours 

GoCars are funny little yellow cars that zip all over the place guided by GPS.

San Francisco Dungeon takes you through 200 years of history with 9 live actor shows and a scary boat ride.



There are several operators going to Muir Woods and generally end up in Sausalito where you can take the option of staying and taking the ferry back to the city.

Most only leave you at Muir Woods for around an hour; some less.

Comprehensive Shuttle Tours claim to spend more time at Muir Woods and Best Bay Area Tours have 2 hours there. Apart from their standard tour they now also have a 4.5 hour tour where you hike into the park rather than begin at the car park.

Extranomical Tours also spend more than an hour at the Park.


Some are in large buses and others in shuttle type vans.

If you really want to spend a lot of quality time there being guided all the way through the Park with an expert and also have a picnic lunch included then Tom Martell is your man

NOTE__Tom no longer does Muir Woods Tour but has an alternative. Tom's note on this is below (August 2016)

As you know, I have been running tours through Muir Woods for close to 30 years. During that time, I have had the pleasure of walking in the forest with some of the nicest people on the planet, many of whom I still stay in touch with. I can no longer pursue my passion in Muir Woods, as it has become much too popular. We went from 200,000 visitors a year to well over a million. It’s gratifying to see so many people enjoy these wonderful trees but the park has paid a terrible price. The animals have disappeared from the woods as well as the salmon, butterflies, lady bugs and lichens, but worst of all, the serenity has been forever lost. Piles and piles of cars line the roads daily, making it nearly impossible to navigate there. Busses with idling motors, car alarms and screaming, poorly behaved, unsupervised children rolling down eroded slopes, have ruined the experience for someone who wants to learn about the trees and walk in a peaceful setting. In order to continue to provide my service, I have had to move my tours to the Avenue of the Giants, a huge redwood tract located about 3 hours drive from the city on Route 101. The trip itself is spectacular. You can begin to enjoy the beautiful northern California scenery as you cross the Golden Gate Bridge. You will be greeted by rolling hills filled with grapevines, turning into large valleys, streams filled with salmon, onto even larger hills, and finally, through redwood forests that will take your breath away. The best part is that it’s quiet here because of the vastness of the tracts. You can see 4 of the worlds top 10 tallest trees, drive through one of them and take a three mile walk through a pristine forest featuring trees which are well over 2,000 years old. The oldest tree in Muir Woods is 800 years old. This is truly a tree lover’s paradise, for anyone really interested in crossing something off the bucket list, this is your lucky day. The cost for this 4 hour tour is an astoundingly low 40 dollars per person and we never have more then 6 people at a time so I can give you the individualized attention you deserve. Why take an impersonal ride on a giant bus to visit an overcrowded gift shop when you can go with someone with the knowledge and passion to make this a memorable experience. I like to leave from Garberville at 9a.m. but I am more than willing to accommodate later times with prior notice"


Others with Muir Woods Tours are listed here

Best Bay Area Tours

Extranomical Tours

Comprehensive Shuttle Tours

Great Pacific Tours

Golden West Tours

Tower Tours

Grayline Tours

Incredible Adventures

A Taste of San Francisco & Beyond



Yosemite is a magnificent National Park that deserves more than a one day tour but if that is all the time you have and you will likely never be back then do it. One day tours are a long day. You have what I call your standard big bus tours with Grayline, Tower or Super Sightseeing and several others in smaller vehicles offering some versatility and more variety.

Shuttle Tours for example include a 2 hour train trip  as part of your journey to the Park. Incredible Adventures offers one to three day tours and Extranomical one to five day tours. Best Bay Area Tours spend time walking amongst the giant Sequoias (conditions permitting). California Parlor Car Tours has 1, 2 or 3 day tours available. You need to check websites to see what suits you.

Best Bay Area Tours

California Parlor Cars Tours Tours.htm

Extranomical Tours

Incredible Adventures

Shuttle Tours

Edge of the World Tours

Grayline Tours

Tower Tours

Super Sightseeing



Some include entrance to the wonderful Monterey Aquarium or offer it as an optional extra.

Grayline Tours

Tower Tours

Super Sightseeing Tours

Extranomical Tours has a bus tour as well and then the smaller shuttle type tours with some variety offered.

Great Pacific Tours spends more time in Carmel than some other tours

Shuttle Tours take you there by train.

Golden West Tours



Several operators go to Napa or Sonoma or both . You have once again the big bus  tours with Grayline, Tower and Super Sightseeing and other smaller vehicle tours with more variety.

Some include tasting fees and lunch, others do not.

You need to check out the websites and find what interests you.

Wine Country Shuttle Tour includes a ferry ride back across the Bay and lunch.

Great Pacific Tours includes in their price  lunch at a restaurant and all tastings costs

Extranomical Tours a few tours to select from and there are even a couple of half day tours if you are pushed for time.

Best Bay Area Tours give you the opportunity to have some input on winery selections.

Max Napa Tours offers semi private tours you can customize

Napa Valley Wine Tours  has a party bus

Edge of the World Tours

Incredible Adventures

Green Dream Tours

Grayline Tours

Tower Tours

Super Sightseeing Tours

Green Hills Wine Tours

A Taste of San Francisco & Beyond specializes in small group tours for a more personalized and enjoyable wine experience. 

Half Day Tours

City Sightseeing

Golden West Tours

A Taste of San Francisco and Beyond.

By Push Bike

Gears and Grapes