Hidden Gems: Seven Parks to Explore in the Castro District

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By Brittany Doohan

[Photo: sanfranciscodays.com]

1. Duboce Park
Located right near the N-Judah Muni stop, Duboce Park is a great place for people — and pups! — to relax in the grass. It's surrounded by beautiful Victorian houses, frolicking dogs and swaying trees. There are tennis courts, basketball courts and a playground for the kiddies. Occasionally, they'll have an outdoor movie night!

Duboce Ave and Noe St
San Francisco, CA 94117

[Photo: Wikimedia]

2. Pink Triangle Park
Pink Triangle Park is a small place with 15 granite pylons to remember the estimated 15,000 gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people who were persecuted imprisoned and killed during and after the Nazi regime.

“I didn't know this existed. It's a tiny park sandwiched between Market and 17th, surrounded by the hustle and bustle of the Castro...There isn't really any grass, no benches, and it's pretty loud, so I would say it's more of a memorial or monument than a park — and I wouldn't go there to relax or meditate. But, it's a good way to remind people of the mistakes made in history and to reflect for a moment as you pass through to your destination,” said Yelper Shane R., Belmont, CA.

17th and Market
San Francisco, CA 94114

[Photo: Yelp]

3. Corona Heights Park
Another great park for dog owners! Not only will you get a great workout from the hilly terrain, but you'll also get to enjoy some beautiful views of San Francisco! “I was on vacation here and I wish I could have brought my dog. But for those that do have dogs, it's a great place to bring them. There's an enclosed area for them to run and play,” said Yelper John S., Las Vegas, NV.

Roosevelt and Museum Ways
San Francisco, CA 94114

[Photo: Yelp]

4. Eureka Valley Dog Park
This enclosed park is specifically made for dogs to run around leash-free. “It's a great place to take your dog to socialize to meet other dogs and plenty of places for the owners to sit either in the shade or sun. PLUS the dog park is directly behind the tennis court so there are plenty of tennis balls for dogs to play with from the stray balls that are accidentally hit over the fence,” said Yelper Kameron K., San Francisco, CA.

19th and Collingwood
San Francisco, CA

[Photo: Yelp]

5. Kite Hill Park
Kite Hill Park is a peaceful grassy area with some breathtaking views. Some Yelpers say it's not as spectacular of a view as Twin Peaks, but with Kite Hill Park, you get a more secretive, quiet space to enjoy the scenery.

“My fiancé and I just moved to Twin Peaks and we take our dogs to Kite Hill Open Space when they need to burn off some energy. There are a few simple benches but mostly it is dirt and grass, which is fine for what we use it for. It goes without saying that the view is incredible, and it's quiet. Many times, we don't see anyone else,” said Yelper Laura Z., San Francisco, CA.

19th & Yukon St
San Francisco, CA 94101

[Photo: Yelp]

6. Seward Street Slides
Just a short walk from Kite Hill Park, you can try out one of Castro's favorite places to play, the Seward Street Slides! These concrete slides are built into the ground and are loads of fun. Bring a piece of cardboard, wear sturdy pants, and prepare for a joyous ride! Open 9am-5pm.

Seward St & Douglass St
San Francisco, CA 94114

[Photo: Yelp]

7. Dolores Park
Ok, this park may not be very hidden, but it's worth a mention. Dolores Park is the Castro's favorite place to celebrate, relax, picnic and enjoy great views. With plenty of food close by and lots of people-watching opportunities, you could stay here all day!

“Situated near the Castro area, I highly recommend grabbing a yummy sandwich from Ike's and a sweet treat from Hot Cookie to enjoy while you're at this lovely park. This is the perfect spot to people watch, chill with your homies, take your little ones to play on their updated cool playground, and look at the view of this beautiful city of ours! I've seen acrobatics walk on a quickly made tightrope to hippies hula hooping to animal lovers playing with their doggies. This definitely is a spot to check out if you happen to be free in the city. Definitely remember to bring a blanket/towel to sit on, some snacks, and a friend or two or more!” said Amy C., Newark, CA.

18th St & Dolores St
San Francisco, CA 94114