One of the best things about the city of San Francisco is that there is always something fun, exciting, or interesting to do.
The great news is that even if you’re traveling on a budget, you don’t have to miss out. In addition to the free walking tours and activities you can join from any HI San Francisco hostel, there are lots of other free or low-cost things to do around San Francisco. Check out this round up of five fabulous and free things to this month, and you’ll pretty much be sorted for your trip to Northern California.
Summer of Love Walking Tour in the Haight
What better way to spend Valentine’s Day than exploring the home of the Summer of Love during a Haight Street walking tour? Run by Wild SF Walk Tours, the adventure includes stops at the homes of the Grateful Dead and Janis Joplin, and picture opportunities at the most famous intersection in the west and the Golden Gate Park Panhandle. The tour is led by a guitar-toting, knowledgeable guide, and is just under two hours long. Visit the Wild SF website to make a reservation. While the tour is free, donations are appreciated.
KNBR Giants FanFest
Head to AT&T Park on Saturday, February 10 for an afternoon of baseball bliss with members of the San Francisco Giants team and local radio station KNBR. Whether you’re familiar with America’s favorite pastime or not, it’s worth checking out this iconic stadium by the bay to explore the Giant Clubhouse or feel the thrill of standing in the middle of the baseball field. For fans, the players will be signing autographs, and World Series trophies will be on display. The fan fest runs from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Chinese New Year Celebrations
Picture a clash of colors and Chinese cymbals, giant dragons undulating in the streets, and the sweet smell of pastries. It’s Chinese New Year and San Francisco’s Chinatown neighborhood goes all out with a fantastic street fair on Saturday, February 10 featuring hundreds of vendors selling festive treats and trinkets, and traditional dance and opera performances. If you miss the fair, there’s also the world-famous Chinese New Year parade with elaborate floats and costumes on Saturday, February 24.
Thursday Night Dance Parties
Thursdays are for dancing, and in San Francisco you’ll find that there are more excellent parties than you can shake a leg at. Looking to party like it’s 1999? The Raven Bar and Lounge on Folsom Street is a weekly time machine to the decade of Spice Girls and Backstreet Boys. Want to go further back? There’s an ‘80s jam each week The Cat Club in SoMa, and if you just want to get down to straight-up house, disco, and funk, stop by the Milk Bar on Haight Street.
Improv Night at PianoFight
If you’ve ever had a dream of cracking people up while on stage, you’ll enjoy Saturday nights at PianoFight near the Powell Street BART station. The weekly event features standup comedy and improv performed by amateurs and brave audience members who think they’ve got what it takes. If you’re happy just watching, you can do that too and just enjoy the strange and funny magic that comes with comedy created on the fly. The show starts at 10:00 p.m., and be sure to check PianoFight’s website for details.
HI USA Tip: Double up on the savings while also filling your belly at these awesome and affordable lunch spots in San Francisco.