The Best Neighborhoods in San Francisco for a Vacation

Whether you’re a tourist or are looking for a staycation, here are the best neighborhoods in San Francisco for your next vacation.

Did you know that San Francisco is referred to as 7×7 because it is 47 square miles? The city holds more than 808,000 people, mostly between the ages of 25 and 44. SF has so much diversity to offer, and that is showcased in its many types of neighborhoods. From family-friendly neighborhoods to waterfront neighborhoods, the city has it all.

While you’re here, be sure to visit Pier Market Seafood Restaurant for the freshest seafood in town. Located at Pier 39, Pier Market has amazing bay views from the large dining room windows and heated outdoor seating perfect for people watching. We source all of our seafood sustainably to ensure that our oceans continue to thrive! Try our unique mesquite-grilled dishes for a flavor you’ll savor.

Fisherman’s Wharf – One of the Best Neighborhoods to Stay in San Francisco

Fisherman’s Wharf is located along San Francisco’s northern waterfront and spans from Ghirardelli Square to Pier 35. This neighborhood is a favorite for locals and tourists alike for its unique nautical charm and history.

There are so many reasons to love Fisherman’s Wharf! Here are a few:

  1. The History: According to John Muir, the Wharf began as early as 1856 with a small village of Chinese immigrants who fished along the water. Italian immigrants brought hundreds of Genoa fishermen to the waterfront by the late 1860s who built fishing boats called the San Francisco felucca. Over time, Fisherman’s Wharf grew and became the bustling seafood destination it is today.
  2. The Seafood: If you’re looking for fresh seafood, this is the place to go. Seafood does not get fresher in SF than at Fisherman’s Wharf. Pier Market Seafood Restaurant has been serving the freshest seafood for over forty years, and the ingredients are sourced sustainably, too! One classic San Franciscan dish is Cioppino, a seafood stew in a tomato broth invented by Italian immigrant fishermen in Fisherman’s Wharf. Another local delicacy is Dungeness crab caught locally in the bay.
  3. The Family Friendly Attractions: From the attractions at Pier 39 like the Aquarium of the Bay to the fun museums like Ripley’s Believe It or Not! and the Cartoon Art Museum, Fisherman’s Wharf is the ideal place to visit with the whole family. Don’t forget to check out the free K-Dock at Pier 39 for a close up view of the incredible Pier 39 sea lions!

From Fisherman’s Wharf, you can easily walk to Pier 39 restaurants like Pier Market Seafood Restaurant to try San Francisco’s classic dishes like Cioppino and Clam Chowder in a Sourdough Bread Bowl. Enjoy beautiful bay views of Alcatraz Island and the Golden Gate Bridge while tasting delectable local culinary delights.

North Beach – Best Neighborhoods SF

North Beach is in the northeast part of San Francisco and is adjacent to Fisherman’s Wharf, Chinatown, the Financial District, and Russian Hill. It is one of the nicest neighborhoods in San Francisco. This is definitely one of the San Francisco neighborhoods to visit!

While North Beach does not have a beach today, it did when the neighborhood was first formed! That’s because the city’s shoreline was extended to build areas like Fisherman’s Wharf. This neighborhood started out as a red-light district called the Barbary Coast but has since turned into a traditional Italian neighborhood. It still holds pockets of Bohemian culture that was popularized by the beatniks of North Beach in the 1950s.

If you’re looking for a classic San Franciscan experience, consider vacationing in North Beach. Sip brew at Caffe Trieste, open since 1953, people watch at Washington Square Park (established in 1847!), and browse for your next read at the famous City Lights Books. Be sure to visit The Beat Museum to learn all about the writers, artists, and thinkers of the 1950s who made North Beach their home.

North Beach is also one of the best neighborhoods to visit in San Francisco because it is conveniently located near other interesting spots! Venture out to Chinatown and Fisherman’s Wharf during your stay to make the most of your visit to San Francisco!

Crab with a view of the water in the background

Pier 39 Restaurants – Pier Market Seafood Restaurant

It’s not surprising that Fisherman’s Wharf is a hub for both locals and tourists. Pier 39 restaurants offer what no other San Francisco neighborhoods can: delicious seafood, incredible bay views, and fun for the whole family. Pier 39 is also one of the safest neighborhoods in San Francisco, with round the clock security keeping watch.

We recommend visiting Pier Market Seafood Restaurant on Pier 39 on your next visit to Fisherman’s Wharf in San Francisco. From mesquite-grilled seafood to San Francisco classic recipes and kid-friendly dishes, Pier Market has a menu suitable for everyone! No matter where you sit indoors you will see amazing bay views from the floor to ceiling windows. Watch the ferry boats come in and out while you eat locally sourced seafood. Or, opt for the heated patio to enjoy people watching on the pier.

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