A city home to a rich past, upbeat vibes and must-see attractions, San Francisco is the place to be. Come have a read of 5 of the best things to do in San Francisco.

1. Visit Alcatraz

Check out a unique view of San Francisco while floating over to Alcatraz Island. This island is home to one of the most iconic prisons in history which has now turned into a museum for the public.

The high security prison opened in 1934 and housed various criminals for 29 years before eventually closing in 1963.

Wander among the eerie walls and learn about the real-life stories of prisoners and even previous escape attempts.

2. Check out Pier 39

Buzzing with energy and excitement, Pier 39 is a must-see spot when visiting San Francisco.

The pier originally opened in 1978 and has developed into a major tourist attraction. It now has a huge array of shops, rides and restaurants.

Embrace the panoramic views of the bay and listen to hundreds of sea lions chilling (more like baking) in the sun.

3. Explore the streets

things to do in San Francisco painted ladies America

Tucked beneath the towering skyline are a collection of colourful streets, charming cafés, fun restaurants and countless shops.

Chat with the locals, enjoy delicious food and get a deeper appreciation of the city.

Be sure to check out the painted ladies (aka the most pretty houses you’ve ever seen) on Steiner Street. This one sure deserves its place on our list of things to do in San Francisco.

4. Visit Fisherman’s Wharf

Located near Pier 39, Fisherman’s Wharf has got countless restaurants and offers panoramic views of Alcatraz and the Golden Gate Bridge.

Get stuck in with the seafood on offer here. Our fave? The fresh crab. Yummmm.

5. Ride the cable cars around the city

things to do in San Francisco cable car

This is one of the most popular methods of moving around the city for both locals and travellers alike.

The city’s iconic cable car system has grown into the largest manually operated cable car system in the world.

Navigating the steep hills of San Francisco, the cable cars provide a unique perspective of the city.

Ready to visit San Francisco for yourself?

Take a look at our trips to America and browse ones that travel through San Francisco. 

Nicholas Hastie
Nicholas is a travel and health writer based in Brisbane. He’s driven by his hunger for all things travel, and enjoys documenting his journeys through writing and photography. Nicholas loves inspiring others to experience new adventures and create unforgettable memories.