Recent Searches
Clear

COVID-19: Check local travel restrictions and learn what we're doing to help keep you safe and your plans flexible. Learn more.

Read More

Things to Do in San Francisco - page 4

Category

Hayes Valley
star-3
1
3 Tours and Activities

Sandwiched between San Francisco’s Civic Center and Alamo Square, Hayes Valley has grown into one of the city’s trendiest neighborhoods. Both residential and commercial, with its main drag Hayes Street, the area is full of custom shops and gourmet restaurants. There are also several Victorian and Queen Anne style townhouses in the surrounds, as well as numerous playgrounds and art-filled parks.

Though the area has been historically neglected, it has emerged as one of the most desirable areas in the city. Recent openings of coffee shops, craft cocktail bars, upscale boutiques, and even a beer garden have made this a hot spot of local activity. It seems that the city’s best new restaurants are opening in Hayes Valley on a regular basis. Its proximity to nearby arts and culture means it is often a pre- or post-show spot for dinner and drinks. It is also home to the new SJ Jazz Center.

Read More
Grateful Dead House
4 Tours and Activities

On a quiet street in the Haight district of San Francisco, this purple painted Victorian house stands as the former dwelling of the band Grateful Dead. Street art depicting guitarist Jerry Garcia can be found on the sidewalks in front of the house. The timing was such that the band lived there from 1965-68, including during the famed “Summer of Love” in 1967. San Francisco was the center of the “flower power” hippie movement, and the Haight became known for its Bohemian lifestyle and the birth of several new musical genres.

All five members of the rock band lived in the house, which became known after the drug raid in 1967 for the possession of marijuana. It is claimed that it was in this house that the Grateful Dead’s distinctive musical style was born, as well as its naming by Jerry Garcia. Fans of the band, or “Deadheads,” can often be found making a pilgrimage to pay their respects to the musicians.

Read More
Macondray Lane
star-5
1
3 Tours and Activities

The two block pedestrian lane in San Francisco’s Russian Hill neighborhood is a charming and unique residential spot with extraordinary views of Alcatraz Island and the San Francisco Bay. Tucked away from the busyness of the main streets, Macondray Lane is known for its Edwardian style cottages with wooden exteriors, covered in flowers and greenery.

Its cobblestone walkways and overflowing gardens create a unique oasis in the middle of the city. Between ferns and flowers, look closely and you may even see the small pond. At one end of the lane lies a series of steps that offer up some of the best bay views. Fans of the Armistead Maupin's Tales of the City books may recognize the area (known as Barbary Lane in the books) — various scenes were set here and still come to life for many who visit.

Read More
Barbary Coast Trail
2 Tours and Activities

The Barbary Coast Trail connects twenty of San Francisco’s most historic locations, with bronze trail markers on the sidewalks leading the way. Many of the sites correspond to two of the most important events of the city’s history: the Gold Rush and the earthquake of 1906. The Barbary Coast refers to the red-light district of saloons, dance halls, jazz clubs, and brothels that developed in the city at the end of the 19th century.

Developed by the San Francisco Museum and Historical Society, the trail takes you on a walk through the different eras of the city, including the time of “beat” poetry in North Beach and Depression-era murals near Coit Tower. The first Asian temple in North America is also a stop on the trail. The four-mile path begins at the Old Mint and passes through historic museums, sailing ships, pubs, homes, and cafes that tell the story of San Francisco.

Read More
Sea Cliff
1 Tour and Activity

Epic views of the Pacific Ocean and Golden Gate Bridge, as well as sunny palm tree lined streets and a perfect mix of modern and old-school architecture are just part of what makes the famous San Francisco neighbourhood of Seacliff a destination for travellers as much as transplants.

Visitors will find massive mansions built with old money tucked into rocky hillsides, with wide-open windows that look out over some of the most iconic views in town. Pristine public parks and golf courses, paired with well-known hiking paths like the Lands End Coastal Trail, offer plenty of outdoor opportunities for travellers looking to enjoy this seaside wonderland without having to relocate.

Read More
Fillmore District
1 Tour and Activity

Stylish yet welcoming, fashionable without being trendy, fun without the funk, Fillmore Street in San Francisco has helped define a neighborhood that is often referred to as the silent heart of San Francisco. Rich in its own history, Fillmore was once home to poet Maya Angelo and comedian Mel Blanc, the voice of Bugs Bunny, as well as being a hub for Jazz music in the early 40s, 50s and 60s. The still standing Fillmore Auditorium is a hot spot for big music acts traveling through the area.

Known locally as The Fillmore, The Fill, The Moe, or Fillmoe, a great time can be had here window shopping at some of the unique art galleries and antique shops, and people watching by one of the many sidewalk cafes will make you realize why they often refer to San Francisco as ‘The Most European of American Cities.” Don’t miss the vintage clothing shops and consider taking a show at the Clay Theatre (2261 Fillmore), famous for its indie films and art shows.

Read More
Yerba Buena Gardens
2 Tours and Activities

It’s open spaces like the Yerba Buena Gardens that make San Francisco the loved city that it is. Only a block away from the Contemporary Jewish Museum and the Museum of the African Diaspora, the Yerba Buena Gardens offers visitors a bit of a rest in the middle of the bustling city center. A public place with rolling gardens , public art, cutting edge theater, dance, contemporary arts, a bowling alley, ice-skating rink, food court and movie theater, the Yerba Buena Garden truly has something for everybody – even if that somebody just wants a place to sit down and be at peace.

Read More
Contemporary Jewish Museum
1 Tour and Activity

With a variety of cultural programs and exhibitions, the Contemporary Jewish Museum seeks to relevantly share and express the Jewish experience with a modern audience. With various displays of history and art and also recent contributions to architecture, design, even furniture and textiles, there is plenty to see reflecting modern Jewish culture. Exhibits here change frequently as the curators collaborate with national and international partners. With over 10,000 square feet of exhibition space, educational programs, film screenings, and lectures also take place often in the space. Outside of the many exhibits, many visit to view the unique modern architecture that houses the museum. Architect Daniel Libeskind designed the 63,000-square-foot museum in the 1907 Jessie Street Power Substation. A stainless steel cube, set against the remaining brick of the substation, illustrates the contrast between old and new. There is also a Wise Sons Deli located inside the museum building.

Read More

More Things to Do in San Francisco

Vesuvio Cafe

Vesuvio Cafe

1 Tour and Activity
One of San Francisco’s most famous and historic bars, Vesuvio Cafe is full of character and Bohemian culture. After being founded in 1948, it became a hot spot for many of the writers and poets of the Beat Generation, including Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg, and Lawrence Ferlinghetti. Other famous figures to frequent Vesuvio such as Bob Dylan and Francis Ford Coppola have made this a popular stop for many while in San Francisco. The eclectic decorations and two stories of lights and color reflect the respect for the art and attitudes cultivated over the years here. The walls are covered in paintings and writer memorabilia, and classic drinks are served by friendly bartenders. Often bustling with activity, the bar is just as happening as it was 60 years ago, and it has become a symbol of the heart and culture of North Beach and of the city. It has an inviting atmosphere that may have you lingering for a while.
Learn More
Davies Symphony Hall

Davies Symphony Hall

1 Tour and Activity

One of San Francisco’s grandest concert venues, the Louise M. Davies Symphony Hall was built specifically for the San Francisco Symphony. Upon completion the symphony was able to expand to a year-round, full-time schedule of concerts. It formerly shared space with the San Francisco Opera and the San Francisco Ballet.

The symphony hall, designed by a team of architects and acoustic consultants, is artful and beautiful inside and out. Sound bounces off of glass walls built to create a building within a building, and the result is that audience members are surrounded by reverberant sound. To accommodate an expanded repertory, a massive pipe organ was added to the structure in 1984. The San Francisco Symphony plays a wide range of classical music alongside hosting contemporary events. Windows and balconies on the second floor offer beautiful views of the skyline and the City Hall. The symphony hall is a beacon of elegance and culture in San Francisco.

Learn More
Haas-Lilienthal House

Haas-Lilienthal House

1 Tour and Activity

San Francisco is famous for its distinctive Victorian homes, and the Haas-Lilienthal is the city’s only intact Victorian house open to touring visitors. It is complete with Queen Anne-style period architecture, authentic furniture, and original artifacts. Designed by architect Peter R. Schmidt in 1886, a walk through the home gives a real sense of upper-middle class Victorian era life. Since then it has survived major city fires and earthquakes to maintain its historic charm and style.

The three-storied exterior of the house is characterized by its circular tower and elaborately decorated wooden gables. The interior is luxurious, all 11,500 square feet of it, including a ballroom, parlor, and dining room most modern San Franciscans can only dream about. It was named a ‘national treasure’ by the National Trust for Historic Preservation. Docent-led tours describe the history of the building as well as the family who once inhabited it.

Learn More
Children's Creativity Museum

Children's Creativity Museum

star-4
30
1 Tour and Activity

Nurturing children’s creative passions for a chance at a successful and innovative 21st Century, the Children’s Creativity Museum (formerly ZEUM) offers an interactive arts and technology museum for kids. Building on the idea that collaboration and creativity are the earmarks of fun and learning, the Children’s Creativity Museum offers a wide range of engaging activities for youths. Whether it’s sculpting out of clay, developing characters in an animation studio, taking the “mystery box challenge,” or simply blowing off steam on a carousel and the playgrounds, the Children’s Creativity Museum is always a hit for the young and old. It's also conveniently located in the Yerba Buena Gardens complex, a hub of activity and culture in heart of Downtown.

Learn More
California Historical Society

California Historical Society

1 Tour and Activity

The state of California has a fascinating history, much of which occurred right in San Francisco where this organization and its museum is based. Stroll through the archives, which include a library, an art collection and a shop. Visitors can view the collection of more than historic maps, books, pamphlets, manuscripts and other visuals, including 500,000 photographs, or see works of art, including paintings, costumes, drawings, and other artifacts on display.

With historical exhibits for the city of San Francisco as well as the rest of the Golden State, it only makes sense that the building itself is a piece of history. Founded in 1871, the society is headquartered at the former home of the San Francisco Builders Exchange and E.M. Hundley hardware store. The historical group is a nonprofit organization that now has other locations throughout the state, but the greatest collection of artifacts is held here.

Learn More
Cartoon Art Museum

Cartoon Art Museum

1 Tour and Activity

San Francisco’s Cartoon Art Museum is home to more than 6,000 original pieces of cartoon and animation art, one of the largest collections of its kind. Through the display and study of this accessible art form, the museum seeks to preserve the unique social, cultural and historical statements cartoons make. What has resulted is a collection that has something for everyone — editorials, comic books, graphic novels, Anime, and even the Sunday funnies.

Cartoons encompass everything from humor to politics, from light to heavy-hearted in nature and from the profoundly simple to exquisitely complex. The museum celebrates everything from Spiderman to the Economist. Founded in 1984 and supported by a grant from Charles Schultz, it is the only museum on the West Coast of the United States devoted solely to cartoon art. There is also a research library and bookstore, with traveling exhibitions and education events for both children and adults.

Learn More
San Francisco Playhouse

San Francisco Playhouse

Thespians in search of inspiring theatre and moving performances don’t have to travel to New York City. That’s because places like the San Francisco Playhouse are bringing high-quality work to Bay Area streets. This cozy theater offers visitors an intimate space to witness compelling (and sometimes quirky) productions like “Ideation” and “Tree”. And perhaps best of all, this local spot is free of pretension.

San Francisco Playhouse has a true community feel. Quality acoustics, comfortable seating and discounted tickets help to make theatre accessible to the masses—despite this space’s small size.

Learn More
Muir Woods

Muir Woods

star-4.5
2769
74 Tours and Activities

Coastal redwoods are the tallest living things on earth, and walking among these giants is truly an awesome experience - one only to be had in Northern California and a small part of southern Oregon. Best of all, the old-growth redwoods at Muir Woods are only 12 miles (19 kilometers) north of the Golden Gate Bridge, the closest redwood stand to San Francisco. Even at busy times, a short hike gets you beyond the crowds, onto trails with mammoth trees and stunning vistas.

For an easy hike, try the 1 mi (1.5 km) Main Trail Loop, which run alongside Redwood Creek to 1,000-year-old trees at Cathedral Grove. It then swings back via Bohemian Grove, where the park’s tallest tree stands at 254 feet (77 meters). The more adventurous should take the 2 mi (3.2 km) hike up to the top of Cardiac Hill, which treks through a steep grade of lush fir-fringed forest to an exposed ridge where you can see Mt. Tamalpais, the Pacific Ocean, and San Francisco.

Learn More
Yosemite National Park

Yosemite National Park

star-4.5
914
53 Tours and Activities
Yosemite is the Taj Mahal of national parks and packs in acres of jaw-dropping beauty. But no matter how crowded Yosemite is, just lift your eyes ever so slightly above the people and you’ll feel your heart instantly moved by the park's unrivalled splendors. Marvel at the majestic profile of Half Dome, climb the mighty mecca that is El Capitan, or hike into Tuolumne Grove, where gigantic, stunning Sequoia’s surround you.
Learn More
San Francisco Cruise Port at Pier 35

San Francisco Cruise Port at Pier 35

star-5
365
124 Tours and Activities

Known for its hilly streets, cable cars, liberal outlook and the Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco is located in northern California on a peninsula between the San Francisco Bay and the Pacific Ocean. Founded by Spanish settlers in 1776, the city’s population exploded during the California Gold Rush of 1849. An earthquake destroyed about 90% of the city in 1906, but San Francisco rebuilt and today is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the United States.

Start your visit by taking a ride on one of San Francisco’s famous cable cars, which run up and down the steep streets between Fisherman’s Wharf and Market Street. Those with a strong interest in the history of the cable car may want to stop at the Cable Car Museum at the top of Nob Hill. Otherwise, while the morning fog is still lingering, head to the South of Market (SoMa) neighborhood to check out some of San Francisco’s finest museums.

Learn More
Marin Headlands

Marin Headlands

25 Tours and Activities

Perched on sea cliffs overlooking the San Francisco Bay, the Marin Headlands are made up of hills, coves and coastline filled with natural beauty and wildlife. The area is a part of the Golden Gate National Recreational Area, one of the largest urban national park in the world, and is home to more than 1,200 unique species of plants and animals. Multiple hiking trails and campgrounds allow visitors to experience the hilly scenery and coastal habitat, while the Point Bonita Lighthouse and Rodeo Beach are popular places to stop and enjoy the scenery.

The Marin Headlands also contains some of California’s richest history, from the Miwok Native Americans to the Spanish conquistadores to Cold War-era NIKE missile sites. Historic military settlements here, including Fort Barry and Fort Cronkite, remain open to visitors. The headlands are just across the Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco on the edge of the Marin peninsula.

Learn More
Sausalito Vista Point

Sausalito Vista Point

star-4
85
10 Tours and Activities
Learn More