One of the best ways to explore a new city is by getting outside and going on a bike ride! The most iconic bike path in the country is the Golden Gate Bridge trail in San Francisco, California that ends in the quaint bayside town of Sausalito. There are many places to rent bikes from but our favorite is with the Sports Basement, a local sports and athletic retail store with Basically Free Bike Rentals. Yup, you read that right, basically free bikes! What does this mean? Well for anyone that rents a bike with the Sports Basement, the dollar amount that you spend will become store credit for you to use at their store! You honestly can’t beat that deal!
Basically Free Bike Rentals
📍2568 Jones St, San Francisco, CA 94133
Hours: 8am-8pm Everyday
💲Prices: Up to 3hrs $45, full day $65 (electric bikes)/Up to 3hrs $24, full day $32 (hybrid/comfort bikes)
The Basically Free Bikes rental location is right in Fishermen’s wharf making it easy and convenient for visitors to find and start their ride right on the path towards the Golden Gate Bridge! The bike route is not the easiest trail (San Francisco is super hilly) so we decided the best way to see everything would be on their electric bikes!🚲⚡️They also offer guided bike tours led by experienced locals which run every Saturday & Sunday, starting at 10am. But if you’re like us, and like to go at your own pace, renting a bike for the day is the way to go. And if it’s your first time visiting the City by the Bay, no worries because we’ve mapped out the best bike route to take!
🌟Helmets are free with your rental (optional if you’re 18+)
So basically here’s the deal:
– Grab your rental bike from their rental store
– Get the value of your rental in store credit to use at the Sports Basement (make sure you hold onto your receipt)
– Enjoy an unforgettable (and basically free) ride across the Golden Gate Bridge!
The Best Route to Take Across the Golden Gate Bridge:
There are so many landmarks and breathtaking viewpoints to admire along this iconic bike ride, so here are some of the best spots to keep your eye out for!🚲🌁
210 Lincoln Boulevard San Francisco, CA 94129 (Visitor Center)
The Presidio is a 1500-acre National Park and a must-see when visiting San Francisco! The Presidio holds some of San Francisco’s most popular spots like Crissy Field, Marshall’s Beach, Baker Beach, and The Walt Disney Family Museum. From Fisherman’s Wharf, you’ll ride past million dollar bayside homes and yachts parked at the port with the Golden Gate Bridge and the Marin Headlands out in the distance.😍 Luckily for bicyclists, there’s a large shared path for walkers and riders so you can avoid riding on the city streets!
3601 Lyon St, San Francisco, CA 94123
Off the path, you’ll want to stop at the Palace of Fine Arts in the Marina District. It’s easily one of the most beautiful places in San Francisco, and the perfect place for a photo shoot, date night, or even a picnic in the park!
Originally constructed in 1915, the architecture is extremely impressive. We admired the endless rows of Corinthian columns, the rotunda, and the beautiful swans swimming across the lagoon.🤩 🦢
Lincoln Blvd, San Francisco, CA 94129
Right before you get to the Golden Gate Bridge you’ll come across the Battery East vista point. This is a great viewpoint of the Golden Gate Bridge so it does get pretty crowded, but don’t worry because there are plenty of other amazing photo spots along the way!🚲🌁
Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco, CA
Of course there are great views the entire route but there’s nothing like getting up close and personal with the Golden Gate Bridge!🤩🌁 Just a mile long, it’s one of the most iconic landmarks in the world!
Conzelman Rd, Sausalito, CA 94965
You’ve probably seen this photo a thousand times before. Located in the Marin Headlands, Battery Spencer is one of the best viewpoints to view the Golden Gate Bridge! This spot will get you as high and as close as possible to the bridge (on land)!😍
557 McReynolds Rd, Sausalito, CA 94965
Across the Golden Gate Bridge on the other side of San Francisco (in Sausalito) is Kirby Cove Campground. If you’re looking for a private beach feel with a view of the bridge then this is the spot! And if you’re lucky you might even find the infamous Instagram swing!
411 Moore Rd, Sausalito, CA 94965
For another less crowded viewpoint, head to Point Lime/Fort Baker on the Sausalito side of the bridge. Here you get incredible views of the Golden Gate Bridge and the city of San Francisco!🏙🌁
Sausalito, CA 94965
Sausalito is a small, yet scenic, city that is known for its wonderful views of San Francisco and the iconic Golden Gate Bridge. With its tasty restaurants and endless small-town attractions you could easily spend a whole day here. And if you’re exhausted after a long day of bike riding and exploring you can take the 30min ferry ride back over to SF!⛴
1250 Bridgeway, Sausalito, CA 94965
Once you finally make it over to Sausalito after a long bike ride across the Golden Gate Bridge, you’ll want to reward yourself with our favorite restaurant in Sausalito, Bar Bocce!
Bar Bocce is the perfect waterfront hang out. Here you can dine, drink, and relax all while taking in the gorgeous views of the Sausalito Harbour on their back patio!⛵️ It has a very laid-back vibe with a fire pit, bocce court, and incredibly delicious food! Do yourself a favor and get their sour-dough crusted pizza, it’s SO good!🍕😋 And if you happen to go during the winter when its super chilly, warm up with their Mulled Wine!🍷🧤
(Pictured: Their Mushroom Pizza and Pear Gorgonzola Pizza)
This is where you’ll use your store credit (from your bike rental with Basically Free Bikes), at their location in the Presidio. The location is perfect making it an easy stop on your way across the Golden Gate Bridge or on your way back after your ride. You can also return your bike here until 9pm instead of at Basically Free Bike Rentals, where you would have to return it by 6pm.
📍610 Old Mason Street, San Francisco, CA 94129
This place is HUGE and has everything sports and travel related that you could ever imagine! They have brands like Patagonia, Converse, Hunter Boots, Nike, Adidas, The North Face, Beyond Yoga, GoPro and more!
Their electric bike rentals for a full day are $65/bike. But if you reserve online ahead of time you can get 20% off (making your total $52/bike), which is how much you will receive in store credit to spend at the Sports Basement. Basically free shopping!😉
Tips for Riding Across the Golden Gate Bridge:
- Layer Up! San Francisco is pretty chilly year round (yes, even in the summer), and is especially breezy on the bridge so you’ll definitely want to bring some layers!
- Dress Comfortably. Sneakers and athleisure clothing is the way to go! This bike ride will take you up some very steep hills and can take you the whole day (if you take your time to stop at all the viewpoints), so you’ll want to make sure you’re comfortable!
- Rent Electric Bikes. We highly suggest renting electric bikes for this route. It will make your life a lot easier!
- Rent with Basically Free Bikes! This is pretty self-explanatory, rent a bike = get free merchandise. We can’t think of a better deal than that!
- Reserve Ahead of Time. Reserve your bike (with Basically Free Bikes) ahead of time and get 20% off! (Has to be at least one day in advance.)
- Be Aware. The Golden Gate Bridge is one of the most iconic landmarks in the world with extremely high traffic, by car, bike, and on foot. So heads up, you might get stuck behind someone who suddenly stops for a photo!
- Go Early! As with any popular tourist attraction, go early if you want to beat the crowds.
Riding bikes across the Golden Gate Bridge was a huge one checked off the bucket list for us!✔️🤩🌁 If you’re planning a trip to SF this is a must do! There are so many options for renting bikes in San Francisco, but the Sports Basement definitely has the best deal in town! Rent a bike, get a voucher, ride to their store and get some new swag. No strings attached! We can’t think of a better deal than Basically Free Bikes!🚲
**Thank you to Basically Free Bike Rentals & the Sports Basement for sponsoring this blog post!
Check out our other San Francisco blog posts here!
Check out our YouTube video riding across the Golden Gate Bridge with the Sports Basement!🌁🚲👇🏼