The painted ladies of San Francisco

There are some pretty ladies in San Francisco that my fiancé doesn’t mind me admiring and even taking photos of.

She wouldn’t mind if I told you right now that they’re beautiful; in fact, she’d admit as much. They’re older women, sure – but these grand old dames have style and class, sophistication and charm.

They’re sisters, there are seven of them (some say six) and you might even say they’re a San Francisco landmark.

The painted ladies of San Francisco, USA

That’s right; I’m talking about the famous “painted ladies” or “seven sisters” of San Francisco – a row of beautiful, old Victorian houses at 710-720 Steiner Street, opposite Alamo Square.

It’s easy to see why it’s one of the most photographed areas in San Francisco. Standing proud with the city as its backdrop, this “postcard row” of old houses strikes a remarkable contrast with the skyscrapers and buzzing metropolis behind it.

They’d be pretty on their own, sure, but it’s this contrast and the fact that there are so many of them in a row that lends the scene a romantic, fairytale-like charm.

You might have seen them in the opening credits of Full House or in countless other TV shows and movies.

San Francisco's famous "seven sisters"

Now, you obviously can’t actually go in any of San Francisco’s painted ladies – unless, of course, you know someone who happens to own one of these multimillion-dollar homes or you want to be arrested – but you’re more than welcome to admire them from Alamo Square.

We caught an open-air bus tour that took in all of San Francisco’s main attractions – including the spectacular Golden Gate Bridge – but the public bus service runs right past the painted ladies.

Alamo square is served by several San Francisco MUNI buses, including the number five, 21, 22 and 24 bus lines. But don’t just take my word for it; ask the driver when you get on the bus!

More of the best things to do in San Francisco.

About Simon Petersen 506 Articles
Travel blogger, journalist, sports and movie fiend. Chronicling the life and times of a Kiwi at home and abroad.


  1. We visited San Francisco a couple of years ago and saw the Seven Sisters… it totally reminds me of “Full House” which I grew up watching! We loved San Francisco!!

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