View from Fort Winfield Scott Parking Lot north towards the Marin Headlands. The Golden Gate Bridge is hidden by trees and just to the right of this view.
Fort Winfield Scott Parking Lot at the Golden Gate Bridge
Lincoln Blvd. at Storey Road (between Lincoln Blvd. and Ralston Ave.)
San Francisco, CA 94129 (See Map Below)
Fort Winfield Scott Parking Lot Address for your GPS: This area has no address other than “Fort Winfield Scott, San Francisco 94129.” The best intersection to list is “Lincoln Blvd. and Storey Road” (shown in the picture above), which will bring you to the smaller of the two parts of this lot, which is on that corner. If you follow Lincoln Blvd. uphill (west) you will see the second, larger half of the lot on your left about fifty yards (45 meters) from the first part of the lot.
Cost: $1.20 per hour or $7.00 for all day. The machines take credit cards.
This parking lot serves many sports teams and groups who use the adjacent fields at Fort Winfield Scott, and may fill up on afternoons and weekends.
From here you can walk down Merchant Road (see map below), go through the tunnel beneath the Golden Gate Bridge toll plaza, and reach the South Vista Point, Strauss Plaza and Golden Gate Bridge Welcome Center. From there you only have to climb a short stairway to walk across the Golden Gate Bridge.
From Strauss Plaza you can also walk down the (steep) hill to Fort Point below the south end of the Golden Gate Bridge. Our Fort Point information page is here.
Historical note: When I was a kid growing up in Marin the Presidio was still an active army base, so the idea of driving there — let alone parking there — was taboo if you did not have business with the Army. This parking lot was on a public thoroughfare open to everyone so we would drive past it but never enter it. I still have to remind myself that the base has been converted into a national park when I drive in here and leave my car!
View from west end of Fort Winfield Scott Parking Lot looking down the hill towards Storey Road. On weekends this lot may be full.
Getting to this parking lot by Car
The Fort Winfield Scott Parking Lot is located just up the hill from the Golden Gate Bridge toll plaza, on the west side of Highway 101.
If you’re crossing the Golden Gate Bridge southbound from Marin County and Sausalito: On southbound 101 get in the far right hand lane as you cross the Golden Gate Bridge. Immediately after going through the toll gates be prepared to turn right onto Merchant St., which is adjacent to the toll plaza.
Follow Merchant St. up the hill to the stop sign. If you go straight at this intersection you’ll be on Storey Road, and after about 50 yards you can turn right into the lower part of the Fort Winfield Scott Parking Lot (top picture above). If you turn right at the first stop sign you’ll be on Lincoln Blvd., and after about 50 yards (45 meters) you can turn left into the uphill portion of the lot (second picture above).
If you’re driving northbound on Park Presidio Blvd (Highway 1): Stay in the right lane as you come up the hill, and about 100 yards (90 meters) after the two roads merge the exit will be on your right, just before the toll plaza. The sign for the exit on Highway 101 northbound reads “Golden Gate National Recreation Area View Area.”
After exiting take the first left turn and follow the road through the Southeast Parking Lot, which will lead you into the tunnel that takes you beneath the Bridge. When you reach the stop sign at the end of the tunnel turn left, and you’ll climb a short incline to another stop sign. Turn right and you’ll be on Merchant Road. Then follow the instructions in the paragraph above that starts, “Follow Merchant Road up the hill…”
If you’re on Doyle Drive (Northbound Highway 101), which has been completely rebuilt for earthquake safety, it’s trickier. Stay in the right lane as you approach the Bridge, which as the roads merge becomes the 3rd from the right lane. You have about 100 yards (90 meters) to merge 2 lanes right and take the exit. When traffic is clogged it’s easy because people will eventually let you in and you can get through. When traffic is flowing freely just slow down and proceed carefully and you should be fine — it’s when people aren’t expecting the exit to appear so quickly that they are surprised and miss it. Once you take the exit follow the directions starting with “After exiting take the first left turn…” in the previous paragraph.