North Beach is an eclectic blend of everything that is San Francisco. It’s loaded up with great restaurants, fantastic bars, turn-of-the-century architecture, and the very best bookstore on the planet: City Lights. Sure, there are also lots of homeless people and a few strip joints, but the resounding character of this neighborhood is so overwhelmingly fantastic that it is easy to overlook the few downers one comes across.
At the very minimum, an entire day should be reserved for North Beach when visiting San Francisco. Less than a mile wide, it is easily walkable and thoroughly enjoyed on foot.
But, what to see?
You can’t go wrong just wandering, but if you want some more direction in your meanderings, pop on over to the San Francisco Chronicle website where they have an extremely detailed write-up on this fine neighborhood that covers sights and culture, events and festivals, shopping, restaurants, nightlife, and even includes a slide show.
And while we’re on the subject of San Francisco, the Chronicle has an equally extensive coverage of all San Francisco neighborhoods worth visiting. This, folks, is a great resource that is far more accurate, detailed, and up-to-date than any guidebook you might happen to have.