Master Gardeners of San Mateo & San Francisco Co.
University of California
Master Gardeners of San Mateo & San Francisco Co.

Tour Information

SF Skyline Silhouette with Leaves

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Where to meet

UC Hastings Snodgrass Plaza
198 McAllister Street

View Snodgrass Hall in a larger map

When to arrive

Once your ticket has been purchased, you'll have a reserved tour time slot.
Please arrive 15 minutes before your designated tour start time.

SF PUC sidewalk planters
SF PUC sidewalk planters
What to wear / bring

  • Comfortable walking shoes -- you will be walking 1.4 miles
  • A sun hat
  • Sunscreen
  • A jacket / clothing layers.  Even though the Tenderloin is one of the sunniest SF neighborhoods – if there is fog, it will be cold and windy.
  • Water


Walking in the Tenderloin during the day is safe. You will be with a group of 12 – 14 people with 2 docents -- one at the front of the tour describing points of interest and one at the rear of the tour to make sure the group stays together.

As there will be no secure location at which personal belongings can be stored while on the tour, it's recommended any valuables be left at home.

Street Smart Safety Tips for any Major City
  • Avoid obvious "out in the open" cell phones or electronics - keep them in your pocket or purse
  • Avoid carrying big purses or bags, and wearing expensive jewelry
  • If there is an altercation on the street, ignore it and move across the street
Preventing Pickpocketing and Identity Theft
  • Keep the minimum in your wallet. Carry enough cash for expected needs, one credit card, and only a few checks. Keep cash separate from identification and credit cards; do not carry your Social Security card or passport.
  • Stay alert. A person who shows strong, confident body language and makes eye contact with others is likely to discourage pickpockets.
  • Be aware of your surroundings at all times. Be especially aware if someone creates a distraction, such as dropping a newspaper or some change nearby.
  • Put your wallet or purse in hard-to-reach spots. Men should carry their wallets in their front pants pocket or inside a suit pocket, rather than a back pocket. Women should store wallets deep inside their purses.
  • Don't wear your backpack on your back. Carry it in your hands or by your side. Keep your wallet in the main compartment of the backpack instead of a small outside pocket.
  • Conceal fanny packs or money belts under your clothes and keep them close to your front.
  • Carry your MUNI/BART Fast Pass in a separate holder outside your purse or wallet.



Restrooms will be accessible at the beginning and end of the tour at UC Hastings Snodgrass Hall. We encourage garden tour participants to use restroom facilities prior to beginning the tour.  

A unisex bathroom will be available at the Tenderloin National Forest for emergencies.

Kid-Safe & Friendly

With an estimated 4,000 children living in just a half square mile, the Tenderloin neighborhood is home to the highest concentration of children and families in San Francisco.  

Within the Tenderloin there are 3 children’s playgrounds:

  • BoeddekerPark (Corner of Eddy & Jones) map | website
  • Tenderloin Children’s Playground (Ellis between Leavenworth & Hyde) map | website
  • Sgt. John Macaulay Park (corner of O’Farrell & Larkin Streets) map | website

Visitors in the Organic Mechanics garden
Visitors in the Organic Mechanics garden
In response to street safety concerns expressed by families in the community, the Tenderloin Safe Passage Program was implemented in 2012.  Tenderloin Safe Passage is a community of neighborhood groups, parents, youth-serving agencies and schools dedicated to making the Tenderloin neighborhood a safer place for all.  In 2012 the Safe Passage Sidewalk Mural, a visually designated sidewalk path through 11 Tenderloin blocks was launched.  The route is marked by a “yellow brick road” sidewalk mural, which promotes safety by identifying the area as a place for children and families.


Most of the tour is wheelchair accessible; sidewalks are all ramped at corners, and while the street route we'll be following presents the usual bumps, San Francisco hills, and some construction, it should be navigable for scooters and wheelchairs.

There are stairs at Kelly Cullen to access the elevator.  There are stairs at Organic Mechanics to access the garden.  For those unable to navigate stairs, please contact us to discuss your specific needs.

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