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



16 - Prayerbook Cross

Rainbow Falls flows down a large, pretty hillside along JFK Drive just east of Cross Over Drive. It's a pleasant place to pause, particularly on a Sunday when JFK Drive is closed to vehicular traffic. Atop the hill behind the falls is Prayerbook Cross, a large sculpture commemorating the first English language prayer service held along the Pacific Coast, conducted by Sir Francis Drake's chaplain.

There's a sign for Prayerbook Cross about 100 yards east of Rainbow Falls along JFK Drive. The sign is at the base of a steep paved path heading up the hill back behind the falls.

About 50 yards up this walkway you'll reach smaller dirt paths heading off both to the left and right. Go either way and you'll come across some pleasant spots to stop, with pretty foliage and not much road noise. It's hard to get out of view from these small dirt trails, but few people will be coming by, especially on weekdays.

If you'd prefer greater privacy, continue along the paved path all the way up to the cross. Walk away from the cross toward the northwest along the paved path in that direction. After about 50 feet, turn left on a small but well-worn dirt path. This path goes downhill and you can choose from among a few spots in this area. Again, you probably won't get out of site from the path, but this is a relatively obscure part of the park. There's a fair amount of road noise here, while it's a good bit quieter back down along the other paths you passed on the way up.


13 - Spreckels Lake

14 - 30th Avenue North

15 - Chain of Lakes Drive West

16 - Prayerbook Cross

17 - Whiskey Hill

18 - Horseshoe Pits

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