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Sutro Baths, San Francisco

(280+ reviews on the web)
Historic Site
The Sutro Baths were a large, privately owned public saltwater swimming pool complex in the Lands End area of the Outer Richmond District in western San Francisco, California.Built in 1896, it was located near the Cliff House, Seal Rock, and Sutro Heights Park. The facility burned down in 1967, and is now in ruins. The site is within the Golden Gate National Recreation Area and the Sutro Historic District.HistoryOn March 14, 1896, the Sutro Baths were opened to the public as the world's largest indoor swimming pool establishment. The baths were built on the western side of San Francisco by wealthy entrepreneur and former mayor of San Francisco (1894–1896) Adolph Sutro.Before it burned to the ground, the structure filled a small beach inlet below the Cliff House, also owned by Adolph Sutro at the time. Both the Cliff House and the former baths site are now a part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, operated by the United States National Park Service. The baths struggled for years, mostly due to the very high operating and maintenance costs. Shortly after closing, a fire in 1966 destroyed the building while it was in the process of being demolished. All that remains of the site are concrete walls, blocked off stairs and passageways, and a tunnel with a deep crevice in the middle. The cause of the fire was arson. Shortly afterwards, the developer left San Francisco and claimed insurance money.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • Sutra Baths was a filming location in the film Harold & Maude (protest scene) and was on my bucket list to visit. Sutra Baths was better than I ever expected for views, ocean surf views, and of course...  more »
  • The Sutro baths were quite interesting to walk around & climb on. I would recommend keeping children to the marked paths as some of the baths do have water in them. The area itself is stunning with th...  more »
  • This is a must place to visit while in San Franciso which gives a good idea of the Peoples of the Coast. Please be prepared to walk along the coast which is a terrific feeling and for a good view of t...  more »
Google
  • A must see while you visit San Francisco. The views, the history, and walking along the ruins with deep dark waters on narrow walkways and crumbing stones. The dangers are also the magic of this place. Very popular with tourists on the weekends, especially during sunny weather, so plan accordingly. Breathtaking beauty here. Don't miss the gift shop and cafe at Land's End. Highly recommended.
  • Really cool, wish the place was still open. A good spot to see whales swim by and you can walk on to Lands End as well as the Lions Gate Bridge which is a good trail.
  • I love taking visitors here to wow them (and going on walks/runs around the area). It's so cool how there are ruins in such a modern city. The coastline view is gorgeous. And, it's not a far walk to Eagles Point, where you can get a great view of the bridge.
  • Great place to explore, while always being aware of the ocean and tides! Check out the gift shop or the Cliff House for more info, great photos and info on the Sutro Baths in their heyday!!
  • For me this was a must see. Read a bit about the baths before you go though. The history is extremely interesting. It's really just ruins left but fun to walk around and stand close to the water and imagine what the baths were once like.