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Ocean Beach Bonfires
Tips and Important Information


Ocean Beach is San Francisco's largest beach and popular with sunbathers, picnickers and surfers alike. It is also a popular place to go on a nice day or night. Many San Franciscans go to Ocean Beach with their family and friends to build bonfires. This is a decades-old tradition.

The following is a list of important information that we researched to help you in planning a bonfire event on Ocean Beach. Please note that there are separate rules listed below for groups over 25 people — and special limitations:

Natl Park Service (Small Groups)
Nat'l Park Service (Large Groups)
Special Limitations

National Park Service
Ocean Beach Fire Policy

Small Groups (under 25 people)

  • Fires are only allowed in established fire pits
  • The pits are located between Lincoln Way & Fulton Street (directly west of Golden Gate Park). Click here to see Google Map of Ocean Beach area
  • The Fire Pits are specifically located between Stairwell 15 to 20.
  • All firewood must be brought into the park.
  • Wood fires only. No painted or chemically-treated wood, or driftwood, no nails and no pallets.
  • No glass containers are allowed.
  • Maximum fire size is 3 feet in diameter, and only in the official fire pits).
  • The Group is responsible for removal of all debris and equipment.
  • ALCOHOL IS NOT ALLOWED ON OCEAN BEACH. This includes the walkway and the seawall from the intersection of Lincoln Way north to the Cliff House.
  • Bring a bucket to put out fire. Fire shall be completely extinguished with water, using the "drown, stir and feel" method. Do NOT bury hot coals; buried coals are a safety hazard.
  • Fire shall be attended at all times by a responsible adult (21 and older).
  • No amplified sound is permitted.
  • Affixing signs to existing buildings, property, signs, poles, and plants is prohibited.
  • Marking park property or grounds with flour, chalks, inks, or paints is prohibited.
  • No camping or erection of tents, canopies or other similar structures.
  • Parking lot between Lincoln & Fulton is property of the City & County of San Francisco. Cars may not park in this lot after 10:00 p.m.


Large Groups (25+)
and Fee Permits

  • Fire gatherings of more than 25 people require a special use permit.
  • Only one or two permits are issued per day.
  • Call 415-561-4300 to apply.
  • Administrative cost is $50 and good for only one day.
  • Important: The permit does not guarantee a fire pit use. It is still first-come first-serve.
  • Go early to claim your space.

Special Limitations

  • No fires-even if previously permitted--will be allowed on "Spare the Air" days or on days of extreme fire danger.
  • No children are allowed to attend a beach party after 10pm; they will be fined if they are anywhere near a Burning Fire Pit on a "Spare the Air" day.

Ocean Beach Fire Pits in San Francisco

Ocean Beach, San Francisco, California

San Francisco Ocean Beach View

Ocean Beach Bonfires San Francisco

Ocean Beach San Francisco

More Info on Ocean Beach
Main Ocean Beach Page

Ocean Beach Foundation

Ocean Beach Map Info
Click here to see Google Map of Ocean Beach area

National Park Service
Golden Gate Naional Park

Area Attractions
Ocean Beach
Seal Rock
Sutro Bath Ruins
San Francisco Zoo

Area Restaurants
Cliff House
Louis' (casual diner-style)
The Beach Chalet Brewery
Park Chalet
Seal Rock Inn Restaurant


Check out other attractions in
San Francisco.


Ocean Beach Sun and Sand

View from the Ocean Beach




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