Lombard Street is the most ziggy zaggy street in San Fran, in fact, in any city Ive ever seen.
Best way to approach it is to get the cable car to the top, get off- there is a stop there- and walk down, take your photos (wait for a cable car to go across the top and stop to get it in the photo too) and then walk back up again on the other side.
You are requested not to walk down the road itself but that didnt seem to bother some people. We were good tourists and took the path.
Lots of loverly flowers, bushes and trees, and several cars made their descent while we were there too, I'm sure a learner wouldn't be trying it!
Lombard Street is actually a very long street, and this bit is only a small part of it. we were going around SF and I kept on seeing signs for Lombard St and I thought that we were going in circles until I realised....
The crookedest street in the world with 10 Z bends on a natural 27 degrees incline. Cars travel downhill only while pedestrians use the steps at either side.
Amazing photos can be taken from the bottom of cars as they zig zag down through the flowers. From the top of the street the view stretches across the city to Coit Tower.
Some of the best scenic views of San Francisco and Coit Tower come from the crooked section of Lombard Street. The views are better appreciated from outside the car while walking up or down the crooked streets. In one sweeping view from left to right you will see Coit Tower, North Beach, and the Financial District. Plus nothing beats being at the top of the crooked street on Hyde and watching the trolleys stop with the skyline of San Francisco in the background. Plan on spending some time hanging around Lombard Street!
Lombard Street is one of the most well know streets in the world, and not just for its crooked section! The street runs for almost 12 blocks beginning in the Presido district and running all the way to the Embarcadero. Its runs through both Russian Hill and Telegraph Hill and is considered Highway 101, or at least at one point it was. But the reason people come to this street is for the portion of Lombard the cross sects with Hyde Street. This is without a doubt one of the most beautiful streets in the world and of course incredible unique with all the switchbacks that were put in to try and reduce the 27% grade of the hill that the street runs down on. The houses are built right into the hill and the crooked streets brush right up against them. The street is surprisingly green with bushes and brightly colored flowers in the spring. This truly is a must see on your visit to San Francisco!
The hill is so steep you can't see the top from the bottom and you have to trust it isn't two far to walk. We huffed and puffed our way up looking back frquently to take pictures. Its worth the climb for the city view alone. It was built in the 1920's , 8 sharp turns at a 40 degree angle. It can't imagine living there!
It was fun simply jus running around the crooked street. Obviously driving would be a very exciting, and quirky experience.
If anything, do jus visit the street because it is really pretty with its winding-ness and quaint little buildings and flowers around it. A must for a pit stop if you are going for a walk round the city.
doing this was so much fun i strongly recommend it! if you have a car and a driver's license don't content yourself with just watching the cars go down san fransisco's "crookedest street", go out there and drive that car yourself! oh and try it with a manual transmission! whoopee!!! no worries coz its one-way and just goes downhill so all you really have to do is watch your brakes! okay if you're not too excited about driving then the next best thing is to watch other people slowly inch their way down this street. best view is from the bottom looking up and best time to take a photo is in the morning. or you can also walk up (or down) the sidewalk and watch the show. and the best thing about all this....it's FREE!!!!
Lombard street at Leavenworth is the famous >20 degree downhill street with 8 sharp turns.
It was specifically built like this because it was determined that otherwise the street would be too difficult for pedestrians (and horses back in the days, someone told me).
Between the turns of this brick street there are beds of flowers, which prompted Bill Cosby to cruelly joke "And as if it wasn't hard enough to drive so steeply downhill they had to make these deadly turns, and they planted flowers right on the street for people who crashed their cars going down".
To me the most breathtaking sight is from the Leavenworth intersection, looking up the hill. On the sides they have small steps to help you climb up and down.
Titled the 'crookedest street in San Francisco', its steep, zigzag pattern was created to discourage speeding motorists who were using the hill as a "thrill ride" at one time.
However, the redesign seems to have made the situation worse on Lombard Street. Car after car wound its way to the bottom of this scenic hill as we snapped pictures and discussed how long we'd want to live in this busy place!
The street was very picturesque, with its pretty pockets of lush flowers, overflowing their protective boundaries along the roadway. Following a sidewalk, we were led passed the descending cars to the bottom of the hill.
We had climbed to the top of Lombard street and then down, after touring the USS Pamponito at pier 45, then Ghirardelli Square. Our next stop was Coit Tower, perched waaaay above us and many blocks away.
So it's been 3 years since I moved here and I still hadn't seen Lombard Street, so I figured I might as well. I didn't really check the cross street and just started walking from my house, up throught the tenderloin, up over Nob Hill until I reached Lombard. I figured I hadn't walked far enough west and was about to head left when I noticed all the cars were queuing up to my right as they went over a hill....Whatever could be stopping them? Could it be?
Indeed, when I came over the hill and saw all the cars lining up to crawl slowly down the switchbacks, clown music immediately started playing in my head. There is no reason for this ridiculousness! It's like the Dodo bird of city planning! But, no, city planning is not run by Darwinism, and this badly mapped street from a traffic point of view is thriving on the wonders of tourism. What a testament to creative advertising.
Lombard street, thou art almost as comical as Solvang.
Although Lombard is a major boulevard, actually part of US highway 101 west of Russian Hill, and a major thoroughfare that leads almost without interruption down to the Embarcadero on the east side of the Financial District, the one block section between Hyde and Leavenworth Streets on Russian Hill is it's real claim to fame. In 1922, property owner Carl Henry recommended the 8 switchback design to compensate for the natural 27% slope that was found too difficult for vehicles and pedestrians to climb or descend. While the wider east and west sides of Lombard are bidirectional streets, this section of Lombard is one-way, descending from the top of the Russian Hill. Built in 1923, the street is paved with bricks and landscaped between the sharp turns with flowers. This is a residential neighborhood, and tour buses are not permitted to drive down the street. Wikipedia reports that among the many steep streets in San Francisco, many of them right on Russian Hill, Vermont Street, between 20th and 22nd Streets, is the only arguably steeper crooked street in the city. However, Vermont street has only seven turns and is hidden behind San Francisco General Hospital. These pictures are in order of the trip down the hill.
Looking back now, I can't really work out why one little stretch of Lombard Street is so popular. I think it has to do with a claim to its steepness, though all kiwis know the steepest street in the world is in Dunedin.
Saying that, the walk to the windy bit of Lombard Street from the Coit Tower is a pleasant stroll bisecting a typical valley in this part of SF. The last bit in either direction is a bit of a killer though!
I did wonder if the people who live on the bit of Lombard Street that is famous ever get sick of the tourists driving down or walking their street.
This is the crookedest street in the world. If you drive it, you’ll start from Hyde Street and then endure the 8 sharp turns down a 40-degree slope. This was designed in 1920 to allow traffic to descend the steep incline. If you don’t trust your breaks, you can still use the stairways for pedestrians on each side of the street :-)
But in any case, you’ll be marvelled at the beautiful flowers that ornate that particular street !
Lombard Street is not really any steeper than most of the other streets in San Francisco, but for some reason, over a single-block stretch, they took out the parking on the sides of the street and made a one-lane road with 8 "S" turn-type switchbacks. This famous section, beautifully landscaped with flowers and bushes, is located between Hyde and Leavenworth Streets, and is a huge tourist attraction. This change in traffic pattern was completed in 1922.
Lombard Street has a 27% slope while Filbert Street and 22nd Street have sections with a 31% slope. Additionally, Vermont Street has a section with S-turns similar to Lombard Street, but with just 7 switchbacks, and it is less steep.
Dennis Miller once said that Hillary Clinton's stance on the Iraq war has more twists than Lombard Street... I'm not making a political statement here, just letting you know how many times Lombard Street changes direction!
Known as the "crookedest street in the world", this typifies San Francisco at its quirky, idiosyncratic best. This winding street is lined with flower gardens, and provides a nice view of nearby North Beach.
The Clint Eastwood movie Magnum Force has a chase scene shot on this street.