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Mexican Museum in San Francisco

What to Expect During Your Visit

The Mexican Museum in San Francisco dedicates its space to significant pieces from the Mexican, Chicano and Latin cultures. Their collection includes more than 14,000 pieces from Pre-Hispanic works of the Mayan and Aztec societies to modern day, contemporary art.

They are the only SF museum affiliated with the Smithsonian Institute in Washington DC. This relationship allows them to display objects and exhibits from this world-class museum.

mexican museum sf
This is just one example of the types of pieces you will see at the museum. It is the Canberra Devil made from glass, metal and fabric flowers.

The Mexican Museum in San Francisco initially opened in 1975. It was the dream of artist Peter Rodriquez, who originally built it in SF's Mission District.

In 1982, they moved it to the Fort Mason Center after it outgrew their first facility.

Permanent Collection

The museum collection covers just three rooms. This is where you can see the majority of their permanent collection. However, they have once again outgrown their current space, so can only show a portion of their pieces at any time.

Pre-Historic Art

The Pre-Historic Art section of the museum features artifacts from the Mayan, Zapotec, Aztec, Olmec and Incan civilizations. Items on display include tools and mythological figures from each tribe.

Colonial Art

This collection includes antique textiles, religious statues and intricately carved furnishings.

over the rainbow painting
This piece is a new addition to their permanent collection. It's entitled 'Over the Rainbow' and was painted by Alfredo Arreguin.

Popular Art

This section of the Mexican Museum in San Francisco displays pieces from the Nelson A. Rockefeller Collection of Folk Art. These works of art were donated to them in 1986.

Mexican & Latino Art

Here you will see paintings, sculptures and works on paper from well-known artists such as Diego Rivera, Carlos Merida and Miguel and Rosa Covarrubias.

contemporary artwork
These are just a few of the more modern works at the museum.

Mexican American/Chicano Contemporary Art

The final collection is from modern day artists such as Carmen Lomas Garza, Manuel Neri and Rupert Garcia.

Hours & Pricing

A visit to the Mexican Museum in San Francisco is free, though donations are welcome. You can drop money into their donation box either before or after your visit.

They are open Thursday - Sunday from 12pm to 4pm.

They close on the following holidays:
New Year's Day, Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, Presidents Day, Memorial Day, July Fourth (and the Friday before), Labor Day, Columbus Day, Veterans Day, Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas Day

Location & How to Get Here

The Mexican Museum in San Francisco is at Fort Mason Center, Building D. Fort Mason is on the western side of Fisherman's Wharf.

map mexican museum

From Fisherman's Wharf

  • Walk: The easiest way to get to Fort Mason from Fisherman's Wharf is to walk. There is a short cut along the waterfront. It's up a steep hill, but much faster than walking all the way around. Plus, this walk gives you some amazing views of the Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz and Fort Mason from above.

fishermans wharf to fort mason

  • Walking Path: Walk along the waterfront at Aquatic Park and continue along the path toward the Pier. Before you reach the Pier, turn left and take the walking path up the hill. You will then walk along that path until you see the first set of stairs down into Fort Mason. It's about a 10 to 15 minute walk.

From Union Square

  • Cable Car: The Hyde/Powell cable car line drops you off right in front of Aquatic Park. Once you arrive, use the walking map above to reach Fort Mason.

  • F Street Car: The F Street Car will drop you off on Jefferson Street near Boudin Bakery. Walk west toward Aquatic Park and then follow the map above.

Other Museums You Might Enjoy

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More Fun Pages

The Perfect Day in the Presidio: Do you love urban hikes? If so, then check out my 'perfect day' in SF's Presidio. This old army base offers a quite retreat away from the chaos. It's also home to Baker Beach, where you can get some amazing views of the Golden Gate Bridge and the Pacific Ocean.

The Perfect Day in the Haight Ashbury District: Another visitor favorite is the Haight Ashbury District. This neighborhood became famous in the 60s as people flocked here for the Summer of Love and other free concerts in the park. On this page, you will find a step by step itinerary of the district which includes stops by many famous locations from the 60s.

The Perfect Day in Golden Gate Park: One of my favorite places in the city is Golden Gate Park. This 1,000+ acre park has activities and attractions for everyone. You can explore the expansive Botanical Gardens or find some peace and quiet in the Japanese Tea Gardens. This itinerary offers you a chance to see it all in just one day!

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