My husband being a rock and roller in his youth ( and still today in many ways) this was a must go to place. This was corner of the city was well known all over the world as THE Hippie center .The Hippie era is a little before our time , just a little . If not i'm sure we would have landed here before now. Its a pretty colorful street today with lots of memorabelia.
There are T shirts from many different band concerts and posters etc.
Its a different spot today , although I did see a couple of "hangers on to the past"~~~There are some interesting shops , bookstores and coffee shops in this area , frequented by the many College kids and tourists alike.
This tour is awesome. It tells all about the Haunted Houses, scary stories, and urban legends of the Haight-Ashbury District. The tour goes on most nights. See the website for exact dates The tour guide is this really cool "big" guy, so you feel totally protected! LOL He is so funny and really knows his ghosts. He is the founder of a ghost hunting group on SF. It is only $20 a person and I think he gives a discount on groups of 10 or more... Don't miss this one, it is so cool!
Ameoba Records is the best record store in San Fran.
I could spend days here, infact I did (I was staying down the street)
They have everything and a great selection of used cds/music.
Also a great DVD collection and used DVD's
The staff was very helpful.
Stop here when you are in the Haight.
If you love music you don't want to miss it!
Haight Street is a stretch of vintage shops and bars where the vibe underscores the city's counterculture.
From their website:
"Haight Street has been through good economic times and bad, but now appears to have settled into a steady state of thriving commerce mixed with the bizarre. The Upper Haight is where Graham Nash, the Grateful Dead and many other popular rock bands once made their homes. It was also the primary site for the Summer of Love (1967) when George Harrison walked down it with a guitar in his hands followed by a cadre of Flower Children. Today it is frequented by locals, enjoys a brisk tourist trade and a considerable degree of Yuppification.
This is the fabled intersection in San Francisco where the hippie movement began in the mid-1960s. It's also a fun place to shop, eat, or simply hang out. The streets are lined with all manner of quaint restaurants, stores, and other businesses. Check out the website.
What once supposedly was a theater (not the Straight theater - no one remembers which one) on Haight Street is now a strange clothing store called Wasteland.
No one working inside could tell me what it used to be. Does anyone know? Address is 1660 Haight St. between Clayton and Cole.
The Straight Theater was at 1748 Haight so I don't remember what this was - maybe it is "new" and wasn't anything at all....??
I like the architecture though, especially the detail.
This wasn't my favorite part of the city but there is so much history here.
I brought my mother and stepfather. My stepfather lived in the area during the 60's and he wanted to see what it was like now. He thought it was very much the same, except for the Gap. My mother and I thought it was kind of seedy. There are some head shops, a lot of tie dye and homeless. The homeless crowd tends to be younger age group than the rest of the city.
There are some nice places to eat. We stopped for lunch at a small vegetarian restaurant (I wish I could remember the name) and our food was amazing.
The scene seems to be geared toward a younger, hippy crowd and older people wanting to visit because of the history..
We checked out the Grateful Dead house but didn't have time to see where Janis Joplin lived.
The Haight-Ashbury is where the famous hippie era all started, and is still a very tolerant, open, liberal, and funky neighborhood today. Here, you will find stores selling everything from hemp to tattoos to piercings to psychodelic shirts. While I have seen other VTers say it is a not-so-safe neighborhood, I don't find that to be the case at all. I have been there during both daytime and nighttime, and all one must do is exercise street smarts and caution. The most I have ever been bothered was by panhandlers, but I just respond with "sorry" and walk off confidently. The Haight-ashbury does have its share of teenagers who just hang out on street corners, but it is easy to avoid them. Visiting this neighborhood is a must to see the hippie era's roots!
OK, there are many different neighborhoods and vibes going on in San Francisco. The reason why I'm compelled to single this particular one out is because I'm a raging DeadHead....a nostalgic Grateful Dead fan (and borderline obsessive Jerry Garcia aficionado, R.I.P.)
Anyways - most Americans are probably familiar with this place but for those who are not, it is basically the area in San Francisco where the hippies lived and loved; where the peaceful counter-culture of America's 60's dwelled and dropped acid; where incense pervaded the streets and free-wheeling musicians played impromptu performances; where flower-power and tie-dye ruled and if you couldn't make it to Kathmandu, then this was the next best thing.
Today, many locals like to "hate 'The Haight'", but I still love this place (again, probably because of the whole Grateful Dead connection). What is annoying about it now - and I'll concede this much - is that it is making money off its memories and somehow this seems sacrilegious, given its provocative and iconic history.
The Haight-Ashbury area is divided into two basic areas - the Upper Haight and the Lower Haight. The Lower Haight is the funkier, grittier of the two.
I personally think you should not visit San Francisco without including a quick stop by The Haight, to pay your respects to the living symbol of an era that was arguably more pure and idealistic - if not a bit laid back, a bit stoned....but surely an all around groovy refuge for a kinder, gentler America.
The Haight was the center of a small universe in the late 60s as the Summer of Love supplanted Swinging London’s mid-60s perch atop the heap of youth influence. Victorians seemed the perfect homes for these long-haired hippies clad in flowery clothes seeming of another era. Janis Joplin, The Jefferson Airplane and The Grateful Dead all called The Haight home. Well, it went downhill since then but has started to really revitalize itself. There is still a seedy element to the area but the Victorians are worth too much money to fall into further disrepair so they’re being renovated to no end, and higher end shops have replaced many of the “head” shops of the past. It all has a flower power tinge to it but you get the feeling it’s more for show (and to make money) than for any real yearning for the better vibes of another time. The lower Haight is more authentic and retains some edgy flair. Closer to the park, you find more tourists and those looking for an already passé life, but certainly its worth checking out on your way to or from Golden Gate Park. It’s a nice enough place to do some window shopping, people watch and there are lots of good cheap places to eat. Oh, and don’t forget the Magnolia Pub & Brewery right in the center of it all as well as Toronado in the lower Haight, both great places to soak in local color and enjoy the local brews too.
The hippie days live in the Haight. This isn't a 60's theme park either, but a famous, working SF neighborhood, home of the "peace and love" generation.
It's got restaurants (including organic food), bars, second hand record stores (I can spend hours in these places, and spend lots of money too) and, yes, headshops. Check out Ben & Jerrys, at the corner of Haight and Ashbury. And this is weird for SF, but I didn't see any Starbucks (unless I missed it, of course)
There's also access to Golden Gate Park at the end of Haight Street. Beware of the pot dealers that congregate near the entrance though.
Definately one of the more interesting parts of the city. Once the center of the hippie movement during the Summer of Love, this area is now home to trendy boutiques and restaurants. Perhaps the most interesting part of the Haight is the people. The streets are populated with one of the most diverse crowds in the city; not only people of all cultures, but people of all social, economic and political backgrounds as well. It"s not uncommon to see a Vietnam veteran crossing the street alongside a punk-rocker and a family on vacation wearing Alcatraz T-shirts.
The Haight is full of wonderful historical places of Old SF too. Be sure to check out the house at 710 Ashbury where the members of The Grateful Dead lived in the "60s.
One of my favorite things to do is go to the Haight-Ashbury Street Fair. They have great music and street vendors.
We figured that no trip to San Francisco would be complete without a trip to the famous hippie landmark from the 60's of the Haight-Ashbury intersection. So, off we went, looking for peace, love and the unassuming, unmarked, former home of the Grateful Dead. What we found instead, was a Gap. That's okay though- the Haight still seems to attract a pretty diverse bunch of people, mostly punk skateboard kids and goth kids, but others as well. It is a little reminiscent of the East Village in New York City, full of vintage clothing shops and little knick knack stores. One good reason to go to the Haight, particularly if you are into music, is the record store Amoeba Records, which is located there. Amoeba is a true experience and plus, they have the best collection of used CD's I have found anywhere- particularly if you are into esoteric, hard to find bands. Try here. They are located at 1855 Haight Street. Golden Gate Park borders the Haight too, and is a really pretty park with some truly interesting characters.
The Summer of Love was a phrase given to the summer of 1967 to try to describe the feeling of being in San Francisco that summer, when the hippie movement began. The actual beginning of this "Summer" can be attributed to the Human Be-In that took place in Golden Gate Park on January 14 of that year. Timothy Leary, Allen Ginsberg, and the Jefferson Airplane all participated in the event, a celebration of hippie culture and values. The center of this 'tune in, turn on and drop out" movement was San Francisco's Haight-Ashbury district. It was a special time when the peace movement marched through its streets and the neighborhood grew to symbolize an era.
Artists such as the Grateful Dead and Janis Joplin used to make their homes here. Landmark seekers still photograph the former homes of Janis Joplin at 112 Lyon and the Grateful Dead's Jerry Garcia at 710 Ashbury. Those 60s 'flower children' can recall the Red Victorian, a brightly colored, 18-room guesthouse, as the "Jeffrey Haight", a crash pad during Haight-Ashbury's glory days. A psychedelic hub around which a generation's values crystallized, the Haight set an agenda that was solidly antiwar, pro-free food and free love, and stood ready to challenge the capitalist state.
Today the Haight continues to be a popular destination for those trying to find the "the Summer of Love". They try to find it in the head shops and stores making the hand-made tributes past memories, and in the drum circles on nearby Hippie Hill in Golden Gate Park's Sharon Meadow. But time has brought trendy boutiques, restaurants and novelty shops to replace less profit-oriented neighborhood businesses. The discovery of a Gap on the famed corner of Haight and Ashbury daily makes disillusioned pilgrims moan at the irony. The Haight is a combination of affluent shop owners and homeowners, burned-out hippies and destitute street people, youngsters with their hands out and credit cards in their back pocket, as well as those seeking a countercultural lifestyle.
Once famous for hippies, Haight Ashbury has been able to keep its charm while it has been commercialized and most of the shopkeepers care more about money than love.
The neighbourhood is pleasant and there are a lot of shops selling clothes, records, generic stuff and peculiarities. You can get tattoos and piercings there, too.
The main street for the region is Haight Street and the shopping area is between Golden Gate Park in east and Buena Vista Park in west. Both of these parks are also worth of a visit.
Haight Ashbury is quite far away from the downtown and if you do not want to spend the best part of the day walking there, grab a taxi, MUNI or bus to get there.