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San Francisco Bay Area Places To Go

You don't need a guidebook to tell you about the best places to visit in the San Francisco Bay Area. Our local writers have researched, explored, and compiled their favorites here, with their own insider perspective and voice. From San Francisco to the East Bay, Lake Tahoe to Silicon Valley, see what they think is most worthy of your time and your money. Read on, then go out and enjoy.

  • A Walk Around Russian Hill
    • A Walk Around Russian Hill
    • Among San Francisco's many attractions, the city's architecture has a charm that draws visitors and locals to its neighborhoods. Explore Russian Hill on foot, and you'll experience architectural gems, hidden stairways, and magnificent views of the bay.
  • Escape to Alcatraz
    • Escape to Alcatraz
    • Alcatraz Island is one of San Francisco's most visited sites, reached by boat from the waterfront. Visitors enjoy its history, natural beauty, and scenic views of the San Francisco skyline, but most of all, they want to explore its history as a prison.
  • Exploring the Gardens of Golden Gate Park
    • Exploring the Gardens of Golden Gate Park
    • You don't have to be a master gardener to enjoy Golden Gate Park. There's something blooming year-round in its many gardens, from the iconic Conservatory of Flowers and Japanese Tea Garden, to its lesser-know gems.
  • Mission: Possible
    • Mission: Possible
    • San Francisco's Mission District may be the trendiest neighborhood in the world. Accept this assignment, and you'll find cutting-edge art, music, cuisine, and shops.
  • North Beach: A Taste of Italy
    • North Beach: A Taste of Italy
    • Rich in Italian heritage, this historic and colorful neighborhood has been the home to an eclectic mix of San Francisco characters since its earliest days. It's an especially good place for nice meal, or lingering over coffee in a sidewalk cafe.
  • San Francisco Theaters: It's Showtime!
    • San Francisco Theaters: It's Showtime!
    • An important part of San Francisco 's cultural world is its vibrant theater scene, and most of the major houses can be found in and around the Union Square district.
  • The Best of Pier 39
    • The Best of Pier 39
    • San Francisco's Pier 39 is home to more than 100 shops and restaurants, a carousel, an aquarium, and the famous sea lions. Find out what you can do and see during your visit to this San Francisco favorite.
  • Union Square: Stay, Shop, Dine, Play
    • Union Square: Stay, Shop, Dine, Play
    • Union Square is more than a park - it's the city's hub for shopping, dining, theater, and lodging. Find out what you'll see in Union Square and how to get there.
  • We Cover the Waterfront
    • We Cover the Waterfront
    • Over the years since the 1989 earthquake, San Francisco 's waterfront district has been transformed into a beautiful destination for tourists and locals alike. This guide will fill you in on all the things you can do and see there.
  • What's New at the Zoo
    • What's New at the Zoo
    • Northern California 's largest zoological park, the San Francisco Zoo houses more than 900 animals, representing over 250 species, in naturalistic environments.
  • What's Up with SF MOMA Lately?
    • What's Up with SF MOMA Lately?
    • San Francisco's Museum of Modern Art will be undertaking a long-awaited $555 million expansion starting in June 2013. But no worries: the museum will partner with numerous other museums to keep its permanent exhibits in viewing range.
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