San Francisco Travel Guide

  • Yummy Dim Sum & Fast Food
    Yummy Dim Sum & Fast Food
    by atufft
  • Buca di Beppo
    by machomikemd
  • View of Fisherman's Wharf From Alioto's
    View of Fisherman's Wharf From Alioto's
    by atufft

San Francisco Highlights

  • Pro
    Karnubawax profile photo

    Karnubawax says…

     IT"S SAN FRANCISCO! Beautiful views, eclectic neighborhoods, amazing people, great spirit 

  • Con
    karenincalifornia profile photo

    karenincalifornia says…

     Tough city for driving around - even for a local. Homeless situation is #1 problem and needs to be fixed. 

  • In a nutshell
    Geisha_Girl profile photo

    Geisha_Girl says…

     The charm,cultural diversity, and beautiful skyline will make you want to come back for more..... 

San Francisco Things to Do

  • Lombard Street

    It was a little disappointing to me because my parents were not able to drive down the street, so we had to walk down the sidewalk next to it. The sidewalk didn't even curve. I would recommend planning to drive!

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  • Alcatraz

    The Alcatraz tour is an excellent tour in terms of the insights it provides about the prison, prison conditions and some of the famous inmates who spent time there. We purchased our tickets as part of two tours: Alcatraz and Muir Woods/plus wine tour. We had to select a specific time that we wanted to take the Alcatraz tour. The ticket includes the...

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  • Golden Gate Park

    Looking at backsides from a stroller all day gets old in a hurry so give the wee folk (and yourself) a break at the Koret Children's Quarter. This awesome kid's heaven has been a park fixture since 1887 and is said to be the nation's very first public playground. The equipment is thankfully not original - it's been recently updated with everything...

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San Francisco Hotels

San Francisco Restaurants

  • Cliff House

    Cliff House 1090 Point Lobos Ave., San Francisco CA 94121 Tel. 1.888.448.2186 Since 1863, serving breakfast lunch and dinner. Stylish architecture and spectacular ocean views with the freshest seafood. Three eateries suit every mood and style. Sutro’s is both casual and chic, offering a blend of modern style and architecture inspired by the rich...

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  • House of Prime Rib

    like Prime Rib,???? here is a link to the best in San Fran http://houseofprimerib.net/home.html House of Prime Rib is a San Francisco Landmark. Our juicy and delicious Prime Rib is made from the highest quality corn-fed beef available. House of Prime Rib 1906 Van Ness Ave San Francisco, CA 94109 Mon-Thu 5:30pm-10:00pm Fri 5:00pm-10:00pm Sat...

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  • Yank Sing

    As a person of Chinese descent, I have to admit I questioned how authentic this restaurant would be since it’s not in Chinatown. My mom grew in Hong Kong, dim sum capital of the world so authentic dim sum is a must for me. I have to say that I’m pleasantly surprised by Yank Sing! They had all of my favorite dim sums readily available and they...

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San Francisco Nightlife

  • Night Clubs

    Liquid's resurrection is Pink, the brainchild of two French hipsters one of which is DJ Franky Boissy who spins Latin House and Deep, sexy house. The cool ambiance is heightened by rose scented candles lit for the entire evening lending it a rosy glow and perfuming the air in the process. French film is played in its two flat screen tvs. Brigitte...

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  • Beer / Wine Bars

    I'm throwing this in for one reason: the patio. The Cannery as a whole is a complete waste of space but this place has an outdoor courtyard bar that's good for killing a couple of pints on a sunny day (or starry night). They also have a ton of beers on tap. The brews aren't necessarily cheap, I don't know as I'd eat here, and the street musicians...

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  • Bubble Lounge

    On Friday, 11 July 2003, it was a day that will live in all our memories. After spending 18 months being corrupted in the *seedy* bars of Amsterdam, our dear innocent JOHNNY_CA finally returns home to the Bay Area. He will make his nest back in Los Angeles, but made a stopover in San Francisco. It has been a much-anticipated meeting between Johnny...

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San Francisco Transportation

  • Cable Cars

    I'd been told that SF's cablecars were usually crowded and thus difficult to get on. I was expecting that to be the case, especially as i visited in July (plenty of visitors). But I observed how they worked on my first day (my hotel was near Powell Street) and on my second day I rode the whole length of all three lines, and several shorter lengths...

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  • B.A.R.T

    BART is the easiest way to get from the East Bay to the city. It is cheaper than paying for parking if you are traveling alone or with another person. From the East Bay to the city, the fare is about $5 one way. Parking is free at many stations. There are announcement screens on the platforms that tell you where the train is going. It is good to...

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  • SF MUNI

    Muni can get very crowded at different times along different routes. The metro can get crowded at random times. Once I was taking the N-Judah into the Financial district and the train was crowded in the middle of the day. The rest of the system runs very frequently and makes it easy and convenient to not drive in the City. Get a Clipper Card or a...

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San Francisco Shopping

  • Shopping Centers / Malls

    The Embarcadero Center is a mixed office and shopping center built in the early 1970s as part of an "urban renewal" program for the Embarcadero area of downtown San Francisco. It is between the Financial District and the Ferry Building. Because of its location, it tends to be rather empty and closed up after 5 pm and on weekends, since the area is...

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  • Department Stores

    Macy's is one of my favorite deparment stores with lcoations throughout many major cities in the US. The best time to visit Macy's in my opinion is during their sales which they have various times during the year. I love all their departments but some of my favorite have to be their home and house department with huge selection of comforters,...

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  • Union Square

    Place to be for all your shoppers. A lot of hotels surround the area. You'll find an open square to hang out. Tons of tourist walking around. Louis Vutton, Saks Fifth Avenue, local shops around and just beyond the square. Bring your credit cards. Check out the Streets of San Francisco Trolley car Head down to the Pier for dinner at Scomas or any...

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San Francisco Local Customs

  • S.F. Nicknames / Pride

    When you refer to San Francisco as Frisco or San Fran, you're marking yourself as an outsider. No one here calls it that, and those abbreviations grate on our ears. We say San Francisco or The City. And while we're on the subject, the name of our state is California. Absolutely no one calls it Cali, and Cal refers to the University of...

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  • Tipping

    Taxis: Driver - 15-20% of fare; generally a minimum of $1 Airport: Skycap - $1-2 per bag Personal Care: Barber - 15% of the cost; generally a minimum of $1 Hairdresser - 15% of bill for one operator; if several operators, 10% of bill to haircutter/colorist/stylist, 10% divided among others Manicurist - $3-$5 (more if manicure runs more than about...

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  • S.F. Diversity

    Everyone knows that one of the best ways to make new friends is to make 'em laugh. The folks in the Castro are very good at poking a little fun at themselves - as evidenced by some of the signage along the main drag. It's perfectly OK to giggle. (Yes, I have two puns in this thing)

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San Francisco Warnings and Dangers

  • Areas to Avoid

    Tenderloin,Tenderloin,Golden Gate Park,The Mission District,Dolores Park are those areas which you should avoid ..because these areas are so quite and dangerous .Already many miss happenings are done on these places.

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  • People to Avoid

    The people who are truly homeless in San Fran will take no for an answer. You have to watch out for the people who are not homeless but are still standing around on the street corner. They are the ones that are stealing cell phones out of peoples hands. They are the ones that are openly selling drugs at the Civic Center or stolen merchandise. I...

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  • Driving S.F.

    Embrace BART. Learn to love the MUNI. Public transit is your friend. Driving San Francisco is a challenge at best and an expensive headache in every other way. Parking is scarce and costly and there are lots of rules and regs to trip up the uninitiated. If you just can't park your keys, here are a couple of things you'd better know (and do...

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San Francisco Tourist Traps

  • Fisherman's Wharf

    I maintain there are two kinds of tourists: those who want a unique experience and seek to immerse themselves in the local experience, and those who don't put much thought into what makes a place interesting beyond the convenience experiences set up for them that the tourism industry thrives off of. Fisherman's Wharf is for the second group of...

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  • Alcatraz N.P.

    If you read stories about Alcatraz and its prisoners, or saw some movies about it, then the visit is very interesting for the revival of your memories. If as it happened to Fernanda, you never paid to much attention to its references and go there expecting something really appealing, then you will be disappointed. Of course, the audio tour...

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  • Be Aware!

    By mistake i ended up with this shop and got fooled for my life. I purchased Olympus VR 320 camera in this shop and i wanted to give off my fuji DSLR camerca as well as i was not using it. The Olympus VR320 camera costs 118$ in Amazon and in shops it costs 150$-170$. You would be surprised to know at what price this shop sells the same. It is...

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San Francisco What to Pack

  • Clothes For Layering

    I cannot stress this enough: layer. It's true that San Francisco can be very cold and foggy, and fog often makes way to light rain, so rain jackets are a must 9 months out of the year. However, if you plan on doing a fair amount of walking, you're going to get warm pretty fast, as the hills can be brutal. Good walking shoes with traction are great...

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  • Sweater / Jacket

    Bring warm clothes with you. San Francisco is located on the water, and even on the hottest summer day, the fog can roll in quickly. When that happens, the wind comes up, and the temperature can plummet as much as 20 degrees in a short time. There's a famous quote that's attributed, mistakenly, to Mark Twain: "The coldest winter I ever spent was...

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  • Comfortable Shoes

    anything on wheels Comfortable shoes and a fleece pullover sweater. The weather changes frequently and you need to be prepared so bring layers. I fleece sweater will keep you warm and protect you from the fog.

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San Francisco Off The Beaten Path

  • Day Trips

    One of the northern missions, this was originally part of Mission Dolores in San Francisco. Founded in 1817 as a sanitarium for Indians afflicted with European diseases, it was named for the patron saint of healing. This is still an active church and school. The phone number is that of the gift shop. Father Junipero Serra founded this and most of...

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  • Sausalito

    Sausalito is a great little village located by the bay just across the Golden Gate Bridge which transends you a world away. The village has some really good places to eat, small art galleries, parks and wonderful views of San Franciso which makes this a good day trip from San Francisco. Just spend a few hours or a full day enjoying a nice...

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  • Beaches / Pacific Coast

    Running the entire west side of San Francisco, ocean beach is the city's largest beach. There are lots of things to do at ocean beach beside watching the waves. One can walk unimpeded all the way to San Mateo County to Daly City and Pacifica. The water at Ocean Beach is noteworthy for its strong currents and fierce waves, which makes it popular...

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San Francisco Sports & Outdoors

  • SBC Park / SF Giants

    Having won the American baseball World Series in 2010 and 2012 the San Francisco Giants baseball team is now arguably the best team in baseball. Sue and I were in San Francisco when the Giants won the World Series back in November, 2010 and headed over to the park on our last full day in town. We didn't see a baseball game since the season was...

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  • Participation

    Apparently the idea that you couldn't escape from Alcatraz because you couldn't swim was more fiction than fact since I just saw several hundred people do it in the annual Escape from Alcatraz triathlon and swim, the sharks in the bay are not man eaters, the worst they predicted was a seal might try to nip you. They do hold it in the warmest month...

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  • Candlestick Park / SF 49'ers

    Originally built for the San Francisco Giants (who moved to Pac Bell or SBC Park) in 2000, Monster Park has been the home of the 49ers since 1971. Although Candlestick Park was built for the Giants, the Beatles played their last concert ever there on August 29, 1966, and the NFL’s 49ers have won so many Super Bowls since they moved there in 1971...

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San Francisco Favorites

  • Fog / Weather

    you've come to the right place! (especially if you want to see fog). i live here so check out my travel pages for tips, and feel free to email me for more direct questions. i hate to tell you, but october is one of our warmest months here. september is also warm. the weather changes not only from day to day, but it's a microclimate, so it changes...

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  • Golden Gate Bridge

    There are many things to do in San Francisco. Generally, if you have three days there, make sure to go to the Golden Gate Bridge, Fisherman's Wharf, Chinatown and book ahead of time to go to the Alcatraz Island. Go to the Sonoma for a day, too.

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  • Information / Sources

    U2 Beauty Health Center specializes in reflexology and I would definitely recommend it to anyone who loves to take care of their feet (of course I do!!) or who have tired and overworked feet (our 10 mile hike definitely falls under this catergory). Reflexology is an excellent way to spend 50 minutes getting all those "kinks" out as well as...

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Comments (3)

  • goodfish's Profile Photo
    Oct 1, 2013 at 4:38 AM

    TRAVELER ALERT 10/1/2013: Alcatraz and various other attractions connected to the National Park System will close today due to federal government shutdown. These attractions will remain closed until the budget crisis is resolved so please stay tuned to the NPS websites and specific park websites for latest information:

    sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/20...

  • riorich55's Profile Photo
    Mar 19, 2013 at 1:59 PM

    As I was writing some tips for a city just west of where I live this morning I found out about this interesting event happening in June this year.

    I wanted to let anyone who lives in the United States and any visitors to the U.S. this summer that there is a very unique event going on. Lincoln Highway is not as well known as its other old U.S. Highway (Route 66), but is actually older (1913 vs 1926) then its road cousin and actually does travel through the middle of the country from coast to coast (New York to San Francisco). Route 66 actually starts in my hometown of Chicago and heads to California.

    Anyway here is a link and a bit of a description for anybody who is interested. www.lincolnhighwayassoc.org/tour/2013.com

    "Join fellow historians and tourists for the Official Lincoln Highway Centennial Tours, headed for Kearney, Nebraska from each coast, for the centennial of America’s first paved transcontinental road: the Lincoln Highway. Antique cars, Classics, muscle cars, ’50s cars, trucks, motorcycles, street rods, and modern cars are welcome to participate.

    You will travel the original alignments of the Lincoln Highway covering many miles of two-lane history, four-lane progress, and even gravel scenic beauty. Travel from America’s urban centers, through pastoral farm lands, over breathtaking mountains and rolling prairies.

    Travelers from the East will start at Times Square, the heart of America’s most vibrant city. You will travel through ivy-covered college towns such as Princeton, New Jersey, and the Amish country of Pennsylvania. From Pittsburgh’s steel and beer brewing industrial history, you will travel through Ohio’s diverse agricultural and commercial mix. Indiana takes you through more Amish farm land, South Bend’s Notre Dame and automotive history and on to Illinois. From Illinois you will travel to Iowa’s farmland across the Mississippi River into the prairies of Nebraska and on to the Centennial celebration in Kearney at the Great Platte River Arch Museum.

    Western travelers enjoy beginning their journey in the urban centers of San Francisco and Oakland, California. After traveling through the state’s agricultural Central Valley you are exposed to the magnificent Sierra Nevada Mountains and Donner Pass before dropping into the deserts of Nevada and the Great Salt Lake of Utah. Climbing the mountains out of Salt Lake City, you will enter the wide open spaces of Wyoming and on to historic Cheyenne for an overnight stop. This is followed by your easterly trek into Nebraska and eventually joining the rest of the travelers from the east for the grand parade of cars into Kearney on opening day."

  • kevinism's Profile Photo
    Oct 29, 2012 at 9:59 AM

    Best. City. Ever.

 
Explore Deeper into San Francisco
Golden Gate Bridge
Things to Do
Chinatown
Things to Do
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Coit Tower
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Mission District
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Castro District
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Travel Pass
Transportation
Pier 39
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Off The Beaten Path
By Air
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Boudin Bakery & Café
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Muir Woods N. M.
Off The Beaten Path
Earthquakes
Warnings and Dangers
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Off The Beaten Path
Shuttles
Transportation
The Stinking Rose
Restaurants
CHINATOWN district
Off The Beaten Path
Weather
Warnings and Dangers
Fog / Weather Conditions
What to Pack
Ferry
Transportation
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Off The Beaten Path
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Combined Suggestions
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Umbrella / Rain Coat
What to Pack
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Cheesecake Factory
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Trans American Pyramid
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Pier 39
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Lori's Diner
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