Golden Gate Park


Top-Five Lists

Especially Pretty

Nice For A Picnic

Lesser-Known Areas

Particularly Private

Easy To Drive To

Out In The Open

In The Bushes

Good For A Quickie

For Screamers




Middle Lake is one of the prettiest lakes in the park, and the walk around it is a delight. The foliage surrounding the east and south sides of the lake feels more natural than the manicured plant life around Stow Lake. There are also a lot fewer people at Middle Lake, giving it a serene feeling.

One of the most delightful lawn areas in the entire park is located along the southwest bank of Middle Lake. It is small and little-known, yet has a very pretty view of the lake and the woods beyond. While too public for making love, this lawn is definitely worth visiting for a picnic. Park in the parking lot along the east side of Chain of Lakes Drive between Middle and South Lakes. Take the broad path leaving the northeast corner of the lot, and quickly turn left on a smaller path leading to this area.

The forested area to the east of the lake has a maze of little-used foot paths. There are some pleasant places to stop as you walk through this wooded area toward the fly casting pools. In fact, the easiest way to reach this spot is to start in the fly casting parking lot. There are two paved paths that leave from the west end of the lot. Take the right-hand path, go about 40 yards, and turn right onto a small footpath. Stay to the right as you take this path about 40 yards down to the bottom of a gradual hill. At this point, turn right and go about 75-100 yards. There are a couple spots on both sides of the trail that are pretty places for a picnic. You can't get out of sight from the path without trampling foliage. But this is a seldom-used path, and particularly on weekdays, you're likely to be on your own here.


7 - Metson Lake

8 - Overlook Drive

9 - North Lake

10 - Bernice Rodgers Way

11 - Dog Training Area

12 - Middle Lake

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