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The Greatest Neighborhoods for Your Go to

The Greatest Neighborhoods for Your Go to

The Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, California
Posted: 5/16/24 | Might sixteenth, 2024

I like visiting San Francisco. It boasts wonderful meals (particularly in Chinatown, Japantown, and the Mission), a lot of attractive mountain climbing trails, and loads of top-notch sights that make passing the time right here a breeze (don’t miss visiting Alcatraz throughout your go to!).

Whereas it’s not very massive, selecting the best neighborhood to remain in can enormously impression your go to. Every space of the town is very completely different and it could actually take a while to get round city, so that you’ll wish to keep near the actions and sights that attraction to you.

Plus, some areas are safer than others. San Francisco has a big group of unhoused individuals (notably within the Tenderloin and components of the Mission), which some guests could also be unused to encountering.

So, that will help you have enjoyable and keep protected, I wish to break down the most effective neighborhoods in San Francisco and the most effective locations to remain in every, so you possibly can decide the best lodging.

Fisherman’s Wharf

Sightseeing and Households

Union Sq.

Buying and Comfort

The Mission

Meals & Nightlife


The place to Keep for Sightseeing and Households: Fisherman’s Wharf

Sea lions sunning themselves on the piers at Fisherman's Wharf in San Francisco, USASea lions sunning themselves on the piers at Fisherman's Wharf in San Francisco, USA
This iconic waterfront neighborhood is legendary for its seafood eating places (although I don’t suggest consuming right here, as all the things is overpriced), memento retailers, and sights like Pier 39 and Ghirardelli Sq.. Right here you possibly can get pleasure from scenic views of the bay, see the ocean lions, take boat excursions to Alcatraz or across the Golden Gate Bridge, and discover close by sights just like the Maritime Nationwide Historic Park.

It’s the most touristy space on the town although, which comes with some downsides: it’s costly and crowded. I wouldn’t keep right here for an prolonged interval, nevertheless it’s good for just a few days if you wish to simply hit all of San Francisco’s most iconic sights.

Greatest locations to remain in Fisherman’s Wharf:

  • BUDGET: HI San Francisco – Fisherman’s Wharf – It is a nice hostel with a lot of widespread areas, an enormous and totally geared up visitor kitchen, free breakfast, and even a small movie show. The beds aren’t something particular (the mattresses are skinny and there are not any curtains or particular person retailers), however there are female-only dorms, in addition to a café on-site (with affordable costs). The hostel is all the time saved clear and tidy and the employees organizes a number of free occasions too (like bike excursions, museum excursions, and pub crawls). It’s straightforward to satisfy different vacationers right here.
  • MIDRANGE: Argonaut Lodge – All the things on this award-winning four-star boutique resort is nautically themed. The spacious rooms characteristic historic brick partitions and timber beams, and I like all of the naval décor (like giant compasses or mirrors formed like ship home windows). Every room has a minifridge and minibar with native goodies, a 50” HDTV, and a espresso maker with complimentary domestically roasted espresso. The loos are a bit small and dated, however the water stress within the showers is sweet. There’s additionally a 24-hour health middle, in-room spa providers, and a seafood restaurant during which you get a $15 USD each day credit score along with your room.
  • LUXURY: The Fairmont Heritage Place Ghirardelli Sq. – This five-star resort is positioned within the former Ghirardelli Chocolate manufacturing facility, simply steps from Fisherman’s Wharf. The entire loft-style residences retain industrial components from the constructing’s previous, with uncovered brick partitions and big warehouse home windows that herald a number of pure mild. The luxurious one- to three-bedroom residences have a completely geared up connoisseur kitchen (there’s no breakfast or restaurant on-site), spacious loos, two flatscreen TVs, a fire, soundproofing, and a washer and dryer. In case you’re touring by automobile, there are two complimentary valet parking spots included in your room too (that is just about unprecedented in SF and a pleasant perk).

The place to Keep for Buying and Comfort: Union Sq.

A cable car passes in front of Union Square in San Francisco, USAA cable car passes in front of Union Square in San Francisco, USA
Generally known as the center of downtown San Francisco, Union Sq. (the neighborhood surrounding the bustling plaza of the identical title) is a consumer’s paradise. You’ll find all the things from high-end shops to smaller boutiques right here. Even should you’re not fascinated by doing a lot purchasing, Union Sq. is an effective alternative for vacationers searching for a handy keep: there’s the largest number of inns on this space, and it’s properly linked by way of public transportation, making it straightforward to get round city. Simply know that this isn’t probably the most picturesque space (it’s a number of excessive rises and concrete). However what it lacks in attraction, it positively makes up for in comfort.

Greatest locations to remain in Union Sq.:

  • BUDGET: HI San Francisco – Downtown – Situated in a renovated early Twentieth-century resort, this enjoyable hostel is just like the HI facility in Fisherman’s Wharf, providing free breakfast, a lot of organized social actions (like pub crawls and strolling excursions), respectable beds with massive lockers and retailers (however no privateness curtains), quick Wi-Fi, and a completely geared up kitchen. There are giant non-public rooms and female-only dorms, and the property is wheelchair accessible too.
  • MIDRANGE: Lodge Emblem – As a fan of the Beat Technology (On the Highway is one among my favourite journey books), I feel this beatnik-themed four-star resort is tremendous enjoyable. There’s a e-book nook within the foyer, big quotes printed on the partitions, and a writing desk in each room. The eclectic rooms all characteristic velvet chairs, pillowtop mattresses, a sensible TV, a Nespresso espresso machine, a protected, and bedside USB retailers. There are good complimentary bathtub merchandise and plush bathrobes within the giant loos too. I particularly love the resort’s speakeasy bar and adjoining café, which serves wholesome breakfast choices.
  • LUXURY: Lodge Nikko – This five-star resort is a part of a Japanese model (the SF location is its just one within the US). I’m a little bit of a Japanophile, so I like that your entire place has an elegant Japanese design and a fine-dining fusion restaurant melding Japanese and Californian cuisines (even within the breakfast buffet). The spacious rooms and suites characteristic seating areas, desks, minibars with complimentary bottled water, and low makers. The big, glossy marble loos have outsized showers, a bidet, complimentary bathtub merchandise, bathrobes, and slippers. The resort additionally boasts two fine-dining eating places, a ten,000-square-foot health middle, a spa, and a pool with a jacuzzi. Ensure you go as much as the rooftop terrace for panoramic views over the town!


The place to Keep for Foodies: North Seaside

Old store fronts and bars in the North Beach neighborhood of San Francisco, USAOld store fronts and bars in the North Beach neighborhood of San Francisco, USA
Sometimes called San Francisco’s “Little Italy,” North Seaside is a compact space identified for its Italian cafés and trattorias (there’s no precise seaside right here). There’s no scarcity of mouthwatering Italian meals close by, and simply to the south is the oldest and the largest Chinatown in your entire nation. (On this meals tour, you’ll go to the most effective spots in each neighborhoods.)

I additionally love all of the literary historical past right here. It was once the epicenter of the Beat Technology within the Nineteen Fifties, and at present you possibly can go to the still-operating impartial Metropolis Lights Bookstore from that point, in addition to the Beat Museum (one among my favourite museums on the town). Plus, it’s a handy place to base your self. The neighborhood stretches between Fisherman’s Wharf and Union Sq. and also you’re near the Embarcadero in addition to necessary landmarks like Coit Tower.

That is the most effective space total during which to remain, for my part. The whole neighborhood is a pleasant mix of Outdated World attraction and fashionable city life that defines San Francisco.

Greatest locations to remain in North Seaside:

  • BUDGET: Inexperienced Tortoise – This hostel is an establishment in San Francisco. It’s my favourite in SF (and one among my favorites in your entire nation). It gives free breakfast, free dinners a number of instances per week, and even a free sauna! It has an enormous widespread room, so it’s straightforward to satisfy individuals, and has a really enjoyable, social ambiance. The wood bunks are primary (thick mattresses, no curtains) however cozy. I’ve stayed right here a bunch, and it by no means disappoints.
  • MIDRANGE: Lodge Boheme – This three-star historic resort gives a singular and cozy keep proper on Columbus Avenue, one of many foremost thoroughfares of the neighborhood. The rooms are homey, with a classic Nineteen Fifties attraction due to the colourful partitions, paintings, and comfortable lamp lighting. Room facilities are primary, with a small flatscreen TV, a wood wardrobe, and a small seating space. The tiled loos are a bit small, however the showers have unbelievable stress. I like the complimentary glass of sherry served within the foyer each afternoon. It’s a pleasant, distinctive contact.
  • LUXURY: As that is extra of a residential neighborhood, there aren’t any higher-end inns right here. In case you’re searching for luxurious, head to close by Union Sq. for a plethora of choices, together with The Ritz-Carlton, a five-star resort on the northern facet.


The place to Keep for Luxurious: Nob Hill

The stately Fairmont Hotel in Nob Hill, San Francisco, with dozens of country flags flying and luxury cars parked out frontThe stately Fairmont Hotel in Nob Hill, San Francisco, with dozens of country flags flying and luxury cars parked out front
Nob Hill is an upscale residential space perched atop one of many metropolis’s outstanding hills. Traditionally often known as a prestigious enclave for the elite, Nob Hill boasts grand mansions, luxurious inns, and unique golf equipment. Its tree-lined streets are crammed with elegant structure, together with the well-known Grace Cathedral and the historic Fairmont Lodge. The neighborhood exudes sophistication and attraction, attracting residents and guests looking for a style of San Francisco’s excessive life.

This space is clear and protected, and whereas it’s a steep climb regardless of which approach you slice it, you possibly can take the historic cable vehicles to get round (one of many finest issues to do in San Francisco anyway). Plus, you get beautiful views over the encompassing cityscape from almost all over the place you look.

Greatest locations to remain in Nob Hill

  • BUDGET: Music Metropolis Lodge – This music-themed resort/hostel is tremendous enjoyable. All of the décor is daring and music-oriented, with band posters and framed data on the brightly coloured partitions. There are each non-public rooms and fashionable capsule pods with particular person studying lights, privateness curtains, and lockers (female-only pod rooms can be found too). The non-public rooms are themed after completely different legendary musicians, like Janis Joplin or the Grateful Lifeless, and embody Bluetooth audio system, an electrical guitar and amp, a flatscreen TV, boxed water, and candies. All loos are shared (except you keep within the Janis Joplin room), and customized complimentary bathtub merchandise can be found to all company. There’s free espresso, tea, and fruit within the foyer always too.
  • MIDRANGE: Petite Auberge – I like this French-style bed-and-breakfast on the sting of Nob Hill and Union Sq.. The décor makes you are feeling such as you’re staying in a farmhouse, with uniquely patterned partitions, hardwood flooring, vintage wood furnishings, and a fire in some rooms. All rooms are spacious and embody a desk and flatscreen TV. Rhe loos are a bit small and the bathe stress sort of weak, however I do recognize the complimentary continental breakfasts (with pastries, cereals, yogurt, eggs, juice, and low) and glad hour with wine and snacks within the evenings.
  • LUXURY: The Fairmont San Francisco – I like the timeless grandeur this five-star resort exudes, with opulent décor akin to marble flooring, glowing chandeliers, and ornate furnishings. The rooms are spacious, with excessive ceilings and home windows that allow in a number of pure mild. Facilities embody a flatscreen TV, a desk with built-in USB ports, a tea/espresso maker, and a protected. The loos are giant too, that includes marble bathtubs, plush bathrobes and slippers, and complimentary toiletries. The whole place looks like a resort, with a spa, fitness center, and several other eating places, together with the kitschy Tonga Room, the legendary tiki bar within the basement (it’s so tacky — and I completely like it!).


The place to Keep for Nightlife & Meals: The Mission District

A building decorated with a large mural in the Mission District in San Francisco, USAA building decorated with a large mural in the Mission District in San Francisco, USA
The Mission District is without doubt one of the oldest neighborhoods in San Francisco. In reality, it’s residence to the oldest constructing within the metropolis: Mission San Francisco de Asís, a Catholic church in-built 1791. The neighborhood is the epicenter of the Mexican group and has lengthy been an artists’ enclave as properly (many lovely murals line the streets). After a busy day, I prefer to calm down in Dolores Park for nice views of the town (the well-known “Full Home” home is right here too) and dig into unbelievable Mexican meals (my favorites for burritos are Taqueria Cancún and Papolete). It’s a terrific place to take a meals tour to attempt a bunch of various spots without delay.

I feel the Mission additionally gives probably the most numerous nightlife scene on the town. You’ll find all the things from fashionable cocktail lounges (I like Dalva on sixteenth) to dive bars, together with reside music venues and dance golf equipment. Valencia and Mission Streets are notably fashionable for barhopping; they’re additionally the most secure areas of the neighborhood too.

I do wish to point out that the Mission has a excessive presence of unhoused individuals, and whereas they’re merely coping with their very own struggles and often don’t pose any actual hazard, a number of guests aren’t comfy of their presence. If that’s the case, I might not keep within the Mission. One other good neighborhood for nightlife is The Castro (the LGBTQ+ district), however there are only a few locations to remain there (The Lodge Castro is just about the one choice — fortunately it’s a very good one).

Greatest locations to remain within the Mission:

  • BUDGET: 1906 Mission – This eco-friendly bed-and-breakfast is a no-frills property with non-public rooms which have shared loos. I actually recognize how the property prioritizes the surroundings, utilizing vitality environment friendly lighting and repurposed constructing supplies all through (the wood headboards are particularly cool). All the things is clear and cozy, and the rooms have hypoallergenic bedding, flatscreen TVs, and desks (in most). Whereas the loos are shared, they’re all the time saved clear and have rainfall showerheads and free natural toiletries.
  • MIDRANGE: Inn San Francisco – This cute bed-and-breakfast is located in basic SF Victorian mansion from the 1870s. You’ll be able to actually really feel the historical past right here: the grand double parlors are adorned with woodwork, marble fireplaces, and stained-glass home windows. The entire rooms are uniquely embellished with vintage furnishings and décor but characteristic fashionable conveniences, like an HDTV, a minifridge, and cozy beds. All of the loos are completely different (some have claw-foot tubs), however all are fantastically tiled and supply complimentary toiletries. There’s additionally a tasty complimentary breakfast buffet in addition to a rooftop sundeck and sizzling tub within the tranquil English backyard out again. In case you’re searching for a spot to remain that actually captures the historic essence of the town, that is it.
  • LUXURY: The Mission is a little bit of a grittier space, so it’s not the most effective place to remain should you’re searching for luxurious. There are not any four- or five-star inns right here, so should you’re trying to keep in a single, I’d suggest Union Sq. or Nob Hill (see above).


San Francisco gives wonderful meals, full of life nightlife, and proximity to the outside, all of which I like. There’s such an array of neighborhoods right here too, every with a special vibe. By selecting the most effective one to your wants, you’ll you should definitely have a unbelievable keep!

E book Your Journey to San Francisco: Logistical Ideas and Tips

E book Your Flight
Use Skyscanner to discover a low cost flight. They’re my favourite search engine as a result of they search web sites and airways across the globe so that you all the time know no stone is left unturned!

E book Your Lodging
You’ll be able to e-book your hostel with Hostelworld as they’ve the largest stock and finest offers. If you wish to keep someplace aside from a hostel, use Reserving.com as they persistently return the most cost effective charges for guesthouses and low cost inns.

Don’t Overlook Journey Insurance coverage
Journey insurance coverage will shield you towards sickness, damage, theft, and cancellations. It’s complete safety in case something goes fallacious. I by no means go on a visit with out it as I’ve had to make use of it many instances previously. My favourite firms that supply the most effective service and worth are:

On the lookout for the Greatest Corporations to Save Cash With?
Take a look at my useful resource web page for the most effective firms to make use of while you journey. I checklist all those I take advantage of to economize once I’m on the highway. They may prevent cash while you journey too.

Want a Information?
San Francisco has some actually fascinating and detailed excursions on supply. For tons of strolling tour choices, take a look at tour market Get Your Information.

Need Extra Info on San Francisco?
Remember to go to our strong vacation spot information to San Francisco for much more planning ideas!