Things to Do in Fisherman's Wharf | Hotel Manager's Picks
July is a month full of celebrations and San Francisco is second to none in this category. Here are some of my personal favorites:
Independence Day Celebration July 4 – The highlight of San Francisco’s July 4 celebration, the city sets off fireworks from the end of the Municipal Pier and from barges north of Pier 39. Best places to watch are Aquatic Park (Jefferson and Hyde streets), the Cannery, Ghirardelli Square, numerous other waterfront spots at Fisherman’s Wharf, and Coit Tower. Fireworks start at 9:30 pm. There are also several events throughout the city during the day. Learn More
Also, the San Francisco Giants have added another post-game (vs. Cardinals) fireworks show to their schedule on July 2. Learn More
Fillmore Jazz Festival July 5 & 6 - Blending art and soul in one of the country's most unique neighborhoods, the Fillmore Jazz Festival is the largest free Jazz festival on the West Coast, drawing over 100,000 visitors over the Independence Day weekend. From sunup to sundown, visitors can groove to the sounds of live music from multiple stages, browse the offerings of over 12 blocks of fine art and crafts and enjoy gourmet food and beverages. Asian to Cajun, paintings to pottery, old favorites and new directions, the Fillmore Jazz Festival is not to be missed. Click in this link for a schedule of this year's entertainment. Performances daily from 10 am to 6 pm. Fillmore St between Jackson & Eddy. Learn More
Gilroy Garlic Festival July 25 -27 - The Gilroy Garlic Festival truly has something for everyone: great garlicky food, of course, plus live entertainment on three stages, cooking demonstrations and competitions all three days, arts & crafts vendors, fun activities for kids and teens, and much, much more.
Thirty-five years ago, founders Dr. Rudy Melone, Don Christopher, Val Filice and many volunteers hosted the very first Gilroy Garlic Festival. The year was 1979, and their hope was to draw a few thousand visitors to enjoy garlic. Well, let’s just say that first festival drew a few thousand more than expected. Since that time, over 4 million guests have attended the annual festival, which is now recognized as one of the world’s greatest summer food fairs.
The Gilroy Garlic Festival was established “to provide benefits to local worthy charities and non-profit groups by promoting the community of Gilroy through a quality celebration of Garlic.” Over the last 35 years, The Gilroy Garlic festival has given back over $10 million to local charities and non-profit groups. Christmas Hill Park in Gilroy, CA (408) 842-1625. Learn More
To learn more about things to do in Fisherman's Wharf during your stay, visit our calendar of events page on our website for details of some of the more interesting events that are happening in San Francisco this month. Regardless of what you have planned, enjoy visiting our beautiful city.
Happy Travels ... Michael Hirsch, General Manager
Named for Mission Dolores founded in 1776, San Francisco’s oldest neighborhood has some of its hottest new restaurants and galleries. Most importantly, this area boasts some of the best weather in the city. It’s a great place to explore during otherwise foggy summer days here. New restaurants and night spots are a draw while Mission Dolores is the oldest structure in San Francisco. Many of the city’s pioneers are buried in an adjacent cemetery. The largest concentration of murals in the city adorn buildings, fences and walls throughout the district. Mission Dolores, 3321 Sixteenth Street (415) 621-8203. Learn More
While exploring the Mission district, stop by Sneaky’s to sample one of San Francisco’s best BBQ joints. They specialize in Carolina-style pulled pork, secret-recipe ribs, tender barbecued chicken, succulent Kurobuta pork belly, and simple, delicious sides. They use all-natural, hormone- and antibiotic-free pork and chicken, and smoke all of their meats with locally cut almond wood. 2937 24th St between Florida St & Alabama St (415) 913-9533. Learn More
Mission Cheese – One of my favorite stops in the Mission! Mission Cheese boasts an outstanding wine by the glass and craft beer programs in San Francisco along with artisanal cheeses and house-made charcuterie, sandwiches and sweets. Very nice and informative wait staff with owner Sarah Dvorak often at the helm. 736 Valencia Street between 18th and 19th (415) 553-8667. Learn More
At 927 feet, Mount Davidson is the highest point in San Francisco. Mount Davidson Park is often overlooked as a hiking (or really, walking) destination; most people know this parcel of land as the hill with the cross on top. Although the cross and the land immediately surrounding it no longer belong to the City of San Francisco, the whole mountain top is laced with trails and one wide fire road. Some paths lead down to the edges of the park, and if you really get the itch to explore Mount Davidson, you might want to drive on the streets that circumnavigate the mountain and look for steps leading uphill.
Start at the park gate and head uphill on the main trail, a broad dirt fire road. A eucalyptus forest obstructs any views. Blackberry bushes are common, and there's a lot of red elderberry, ivy, and cotoneaster. (Caution: please be watchful for poison oak that is prolific off the trails.) Small paths depart from both sides of the trail; all are options if you'd like to explore Mount Davidson, but for the quickest trip to the top, stay on the gently graded main trail. At 0.24 mile, the trail ends at a broad bare spot. A break in the tree cover permits views of the downtown skyline to the north. A rough path continues downhill, but turn around and head toward the cross. Look for an unmarked small path to the left. After a few steps the trail splits; stay to the right. The narrow path squeezes through blackberry and cotoneaster. After descending on some stone steps, the path meets the main trail. Turn left and return to the trailhead. The address of the Cross site is 125 Dalewood Way. Learn More
Sundance Kabuki Cinema
Nothing says “Date Night” like dinner and a movie. The Sundance Kabuki is one of the most unique movie theatres in the country. Not only is the building distinctive, but the experience is unlike at any other cinema. It's the best place in San Francisco to watch a movie and enjoy a cocktail, beer or wine, and have an interesting snack. Drinks and food can be brought into the designated Over 21 shows, even full bottles of wine or champagne purchased in our bars. Screening Room Auditoriums 7 and 8 are luxurious, intimate 'private screening room' type spaces with rocking chair love seats and tablettes. 1881 Post Street @ Fillmore (415) 346-3243. Learn More
San Francisco Opera
The summer season boasts three opera favorites through July with Jerome Kern’s Porgie and Bess, Pucinni’s Madame Butterfly and La Traviata by Giuseppe Verdi. A leader among international opera companies for nine decades, San Francisco Opera was founded by Gaetano Merola (1881–1953) and incorporated in 1923. San Francisco Opera's season now contains approximately 75 performances of ten operas between September and July. The Opera is housed in the War Memorial Opera House. Completed in 1932, it is one of the last Beaux-Arts structures erected in the United States and employs the classic Roman Doric order in a reserved and sober form appropriate to its function commemorating all those who served in World War I. Learn More
Yerba Buena Gardens Festival
YBG Festival presents classical, world, and jazz music, contemporary and traditional dance, theater, children’s and family programs and cultural events reflecting the rich cultures and creativity of the region. Artistic excellence, inclusion, diversity and innovation are at the heart of our mission. As the only curated arts park fully dedicated to the long-term presentation of free arts and cultural programs, Yerba Buena Gardens has a unique place in the cultural landscape of San Francisco. Click on the link to see the very family-friendly line up of entertainment. Learn More
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Ring in the New Year with a spectacular waterfront fireworks display over the San Francisco Bay. This is a free, family event that begins at Midnight. There are many great spots to view the show; however the best public viewing spots are located along the Embarcadero and south of the Ferry Building.