San Francisco Bay Area Essentials
Find the best places to go in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Nightlife Essentials: Best Places to ...
Slide, 430 Mason St., San Francisco (415) 421-1916
Start out the night by going down a slide -- literally -- to this downstairs bar and nightclub. The speakeasy-style establishment sometimes receives poor reviews for the challenge in getting past the bouncer, but once inside, it's a packed, lively crowd.
GRAB A DRINK
John Collins, 90 Natoma St., San Francisco (415) 543-2277
Located in an alley in San Francisco's South of Market neighborhood, and within walking distance of the financial district, this watering hole draws regulars taking a break after a long day's work.
TAKE A DATE
Top of the Mark, 999 California St., San Francisco (415) 616-6916
A little cliche? Perhaps. But the Top of the Mark, a restaurant and bar at the top of the InterContinental Mark Hopkins Hotel on Nob Hill, remains a classic destination for an old-fashioned romantic evening. Both tourists and locals are lured here by its cocktails and panoramic views of the city.
HANG OUT WITH LOCALS
Dolores Park Movie Night, Dolores Park, 20th Street and Dolores
Dolores Park is a hot spot on sunny days, with locals spreading out their blankets on the lawn and enjoying the view. The park also attracts evening crowds once a month for its outdoor movie nights.
THROW A BACHELORETTE PARTY
AsiaSF, 201 Ninth St., San Francisco (415) 255-2742
Each night, the restaurant's transgender "Ladies of AsiaSF" -- also known as their "gender illusionists" -- prance and dance on top of their runway bar. They also make appearances downstairs in the restaurant's night club. Bachelorettes get called up on the stage for some special time with the divas.
Do Re Mi Music Studio, 1604 Post St., San Francisco (415) 771-8884
Feel like belting out Journey's "Don't Stop Believing"? Singers and wannabe singers head to Japantown, where they can rent a private room at Do Re Mi Music Studio and choose from several albums of top American tunes.
MEET SOMEONE OF THE SAME SEX
440 Castro, 440 Castro St., San Francisco (415) 621-8732
A popular gay bar in the city's Castro neighborhood, its Monday Underwear Night packs in men in their skivvies.
Outdoor Essentials: Best Places to ...
GO ON A HIKE
Dogs often frolic on this stretch of beach, with the Golden Gate Bridge as a backdrop.
GO TO THE BEACH
Northern California is not known for warm beaches, but Baker Beach, at the foot of the Golden Gate Bridge, is a hot spot for laying out on a rare hot day -- maybe even in the nude.
TAKE IN A GREAT VIEW OF THE CITY
Lyon Street Steps, starts at Broadway and descends to Green
A popular workout, the reward for climbing to the top of the Lyon Street steps is a beautiful view of the bay.
Treasure Island, located in between the span of the Bay Bridge, overlooks San Francisco, offering a perfect view of the city skyline.