If you’re moving to the Bay Area and want to know about neighborhoods, you’ve come to the right place. Whether you already live in another part of the country and are looking for a new city or if this is your first time living outside of the home, we’ll break down which San Francisco neighborhoods should be on your radar.
The best San Francisco neighborhoods to live in are diverse, but all within the city limits. There are many reasons to be interested in San Francisco’s neighborhoods, but a few take precedence over the others.
What’s important to you – safety, party scene, coffee shops, parks, organic food options…? For this list, we’ve selected neighborhoods that are safe and family-friendly. You may also want to consider commuting time and what you do outside of work. If your answer is, “I want it all!” check out our list at the end.
While we’re not saying that these are the best San Francisco neighborhoods for everyone, they certainly hold their own as places to consider calling home.
1. Fisherman’s Wharf/ Golden Gate Bridge:
It’s safe to say this is one of the most iconic views in San Francisco. The bright orange bridge stands out from the coast, and it’s a must-see, but from Fisherman’s Wharf, you get a great view without dealing with too many crowds. This neighborhood is perfect for both visitors and residents alike.
You’ll enjoy Fisherman’s Wharf for its kid-friendly activities and sights, but one of the best places to be is at the Marina Green Park. The park has a great view of the bridge and an outdoor skating rink in winter. Plus, it’s just down the road from Fort Mason Center, where you can enjoy outdoor concerts, live performances, and more.
2. Financial District
If you’re looking for the best San Francisco neighborhoods to live in, there’s no better choice than the Financial District. The Financial District is also known as simply “The FiDi.” This neighborhood is perfect for professionals due to its convenient location and easy access to everything. And if you can’t find what you need right off the bat, there are always public transit options to get you where you need to go.
The best part about The FiDi is that it’s not all business. You’ll find some great restaurants and bars in this neighborhood so you can unwind after a long day on the job. One of the top places for drinks is ABV, which offers a variety of local brews. If you’re looking for a great Italian meal, look no further than zero.
The FiDi is home to some pretty notable landmarks as well. One of the most visited locations is Union Square Park, which also happens to be one of San Francisco’s oldest parks. The Transamerica Pyramid is another notable landmark that is a must-see.
3. Mission District
Another amazing San Francisco neighborhood to live in is the Mission District. This is a young and hip neighborhood with a lot going for it. If you want to be around like-minded people passionate about life, then this area is perfect for you.
The best part about The Mission District is its proximity to plenty of hotspots on both the business and nightlife fronts. This is a great place to call home for those working in the tech industry, as it’s close to both Silicon Valley and San Francisco proper. Plus, the Mission District has been named one of five micro hoods by Forbes magazine due to its small businesses and walkable community.
When deciding on a place to live, you should always consider location. Luckily for San Francisco residents, The Mission District is near everything, whether work or play. Plus, there are plenty of amazing restaurants to choose from in this area, so you can always find something new to try.
One of the best San Francisco neighborhoods to live in is The Castro. This neighborhood is rich in culture and history. And while it may be one of the most popular places to live in San Francisco, there are plenty of reasons why people keep moving here.
The Castro is a very diverse neighborhood that offers a little bit of everything. It’s overwhelming with plenty of great restaurants, bars, and shops to choose from. You’ll also enjoy the unique venues like The Cafe and The Different Fur. Whether you’re looking for something casual or upscale, this part of the city has you covered.
Another benefit of living in this area of San Francisco is that it’s close to major shopping destinations like The Westfield Mall and Hayes Valley Shopping on Market Street. This area is also perfect for people working in the downtown area as it’s within walking distance to all major office buildings.
For those looking for a more laid-back lifestyle, you can’t get much better than Haight Ashbury. The Haight is a great place to go if you’re looking to escape from all the fast-paced city life. But this neighborhood is also great for those who don’t want to be surrounded by thousands of people every day.
Haight Ashbury offers a more relaxed pace where you can enjoy outdoor activities with others who share the same interests. Plus, this part of San Francisco has some amazing food, so you can always find a great meal without all the bustles.
In terms of culture and history, Haight Ashbury is one of the top neighborhoods in the city. However, once you live here, you might never want to leave! And with it being only a few miles from downtown, you’ll still have access to everything the city has to offer.
6. North Beach
North Beach is another great place to live when you’re in San Francisco. This neighborhood is known for its multitude of Italian restaurants and cafes. But it also has a lot more to offer than amazing food.
The neighborhood offers a laid-back lifestyle that lets you enjoy the beauty of San Francisco while still having access to all the best parts of the city. Plus, North Beach is full of local history and culture that you can’t find anywhere else.
This neighborhood has a lot to offer residents, such as plenty of great outdoor activities along with entertainment options like The Warfield Theatre. If you’re looking for a place where you can have fun and relax, this is the neighborhood you’ve been looking for.
7. Pacific Heights
Even if you’re not into the whole Silicon Valley scene, Pacific Heights is still one of the most popular places to live in San Francisco. This place is known for its beautiful houses and tree-lined streets. And with all these great things, it’s easy to see why so many people want to call this neighborhood home.
This part of San Francisco has a rich history that you can’t find anywhere else in the area. Plus, there are plenty of great turn-of-the-century homes to choose from that date back to the Victorian era. Pacific Heights is one of those neighborhoods where people come and never want to leave. From having access to some of the best outdoor spots to enjoying a laid-back lifestyle, this is one of the perfect places to live.
8. Noe Valley and Twin Peaks
When looking at Noe Valley and Twin Peaks, people tend to think of quiet neighborhoods with a lot of greenery. And while this is true for both areas, they also have a little more culture than some other parts of San Francisco.
Noe Valley offers the best of what the city offers without all the noise that comes with living in a more congested area. Plus, there are plenty of great outdoor activities that people can enjoy when they move here.
Twin Peaks is like Noe Valley in the sense that it’s a calmer neighborhood with a good amount of culture. If you want a place to enjoy nature and still be within walking distance of a major city, both neighborhoods are perfect for you.
Russian Hills is a neighborhood that has so much to offer residents. The scenery and homes are amazing, and it’s hard not to want to live here. Plus, there are plenty of places where you can enjoy the great weather, such as Crissy Field and Lands’ End Lookout Trail.
Another reason why people love Russian Hills is that it’s one of the most convenient places to live in all of San Francisco. After you move here, it’s easy to see why so many people never want to leave. And with so much to offer, who could blame them?
If you’re looking for a neighborhood where you can enjoy great weather and amazing homes, then this is the place for you! Russian Hills is perfect for those who want to get away from the hustle and bustle of city living. And with all that has to offer, you might never want to leave!
Costs of living in San Francisco, California
Each of these neighborhoods has its distinct charm that makes them very popular among San Francisco residents. However, it’s important to remember that the cost of living varies greatly between them. Because North Beach is so popular with people who want to experience everything the best parts of the city have to offer, they pay more in rent than people in other neighborhoods.
Average Rental Prices of an Apartment in SF, California
Single bedroom apartment average rent – $3,400
Double bedroom apartment average rent – $4,483
Median sales price – $ 1.2 million.
There are plenty of great places to live in San Francisco, but these neighborhoods are at the top of the list. Whether you want to escape from all the busyness or if you just want to chill out, one of these places is sure to be perfect for you! So, look and see which neighborhood would be best for your next home.
What is the best neighborhood in San Francisco to live in?
All these neighborhoods offer great benefits, such as beautiful scenery and unique architecture. However, if you’re looking for a place that offers both of those things with amazing culture and history, then Haight Ashbury is where you want to be! This neighborhood has so much to offer residents that you’ll always have something new and interesting to do.
What is the best local attraction in San Francisco?
Some of the best attractions are The Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz Island, Lombard Street, The Palace of Fine Arts Theatre, Pier 39 & Ghirardelli Square. There are so many great things to see and do in San Francisco. Plus, with so many local events going on each month, you’ll never get tired of exploring every inch of the city!
Yes, there are plenty of affordable neighborhoods throughout the city. For example, Chinatown is a popular neighborhood that offers great food and outdoor activities. Plus, you’ll be able to save money on food since so many of the places are offering specials throughout the month!
Alex Sherr is the founder of My Long Distance Movers, a blog that provides moving information and resources for people who are relocating. He has more than two decades of experience in the moving and relocation industry, and he is passionate about helping people relocate smoothly and efficiently. When he's not writing or blogging, Alex enjoys spending time with his wife and two young children.