Photograph by Catherine Karnow
A mosaic of colorful, distinctive neighborhoods, San Francisco, California, is a city of trend-setting high fashion and famous postcard views. Within this seven-by-seven-mile metropolis—which perches on a peninsula amid 43 hills—you’ll find ethnic enclaves such as the Mission District, leafy parks like the Presidio and Golden Gate, tony residential areas such as Nob Hill, and the gleaming office towers of the Financial District. Over the years, this supremely tolerant city has welcomed the Irish, Latinos, Chinese, hippies, gays, and dot-commers. “It’s an odd thing,” said Oscar Wilde, “but anyone who disappears is said to be seen at San Francisco.”
Here is a list of free attractions to help you experience the city without breaking the bank.
With plenty of parks, museums, sites, and restaurants, you will have no problem keeping the whole family entertained in San Francisco.
Globe-trotters can experience flavors that go far beyond the standard chocolate, vanilla, or strawberry. Experience eel ice cream in Japan or green tea in Florence.
See our gallery of the best hikes within an hour of U.S. cities where the only prerequisite for exploring is a pair of sneakers.
2015 Traveler Photo Contest
Explore the submissions, share your favorites, and check back for the winning images.