About San Francisco

San Francisco has often been called "Everybody's favorite city," with good reason.

The 40-square miles of this coastal California city contain world famous icons like the Golden Gate Bridge, the former island prison Alcatraz, the original cable cars, charming Victorian houses, the Summer of Love's Haight Ashbury, the largest Chinatown in the United States, the LGBT-centric Castro and the many attractions of Fisherman's Wharf like PIER 39 and the new Madame Tussauds and the San Francisco Dungeon.

The city also contains charming neighborhoods that are lesser known. The Mission, Sunset, Richmond, Dogpatch, Fillmore, Hayes Valley, Marina, Cow Hollow, Bayview, Excelsior and other districts offer plenty to explore and enjoy.

San Francisco is rich in arts and culture. Museums include the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA), the deYoung, the Legion of Honor, the Asian Art Museum, the Contemporary Jewish Museum, the Museum of the African Diaspora, the Exploratorium and the California Academy of Sciences. Other unique attractions include the Walt Disney Family Museum, the Museum of Craft and Design, the Wells Fargo History Museum and the San Francisco Railway Museum. The LGBT History Museum is one of only two in the world.

Performing arts include the San Francisco Symphony, Ballet and Opera companies, the American Conservatory Theatre, numerous dance companies including classical, contemporary, jazz and ethnic styles. "Beach Blanket Babylon," the world's longest running musical revue, updates its numbers so frequently that it's like a new show every time.

The culinary scene in San Francisco is also world famous with many Michelin stars and James Beard Foundation nods to be found. Top chefs create new cuisines with the region's bounty of fresh ingredients and cultural influences. Ethnic traditions are easy and affordable to sample with a wide variety of cuisines including regional American, Chinese, Japanese, Thai, Burmese, Vietnamese, Indian, Italian, French, Spanish, Basque, Mexican, Peruvian, African and more.

The San Francisco lifestyle puts a high priority on being "green." All things local, sustainable, seasonal, recyclable and upcycled are prized.

San Francisco's famous fog is an attraction in itself. From June to August, the mornings and evenings can be cool. The warmest weather is in the spring and fall. Winters in San Francisco can be rainy but snow and ice are extremely rare.

San Francisco offers an excellent public transportation system. BART makes airport transfers quick and inexpensive. SFMTA, the municipal railway, operates cable cars, streetcars and buses that make the whole city accessible without the expense of renting or parking a car.

San Francisco International Airport (SFO) offers non-stop flights to more than 31 international cities on 30 international carriers. San Francisco also welcomes a steady flow of cruise ships with itineraries beginning and ending in the city, or en route to Alaska, Hawaii and Mexico.

No matter how many times you visit San Francisco, each experience will be different, with new neighborhoods, attractions, tours and restaurants to discover. Yet the icons and the atmosphere remain the same. That's what San Francisco Travel means by "Never the same. Always San Francisco."

Information provided by: San Francisco Travel Association