North Beach is San Francisco’s “Little Italy” with a vibrant and a strong Italian-American community. This neighborhood is known for drawing in locals and tourists to its one of a kind restaurants, cafes, bars and stores. The spirit of the Beat Generation can be felt throughout the streets as many locations uphold the history.
Washington Square Park
Located in the heart of North Beach, Washington Square Park is where you can find many enjoying a good read, lunch and hanging out with friends. Overlooking the park is the St. Peter and St. Paul Church. Before covid you were able to go in and take a look. It’s a beautiful Catholic Church that offers mass in Italian, making you feel like you’re in Rome for a bit.
Known for all the strip clubs and adult entertainment, this is where the majority of strip clubs are located in San Francisco. A fun fact, Carol Doda, one of the America’s first topless dancers in America during late 1960s, was featured in the Condor Club, the same club found on the corner of Broadway and Columbus.
Walk down Broadway and look to your left, you will find a steep hill. Walk all the way up and be prepared to find a spectacular view and hidden gems for all the photographers out there!
City Lights was founded in 1953 by poet Lawrence Ferlinghetti and Peter D. Martin. “City Lights is one of the few truly great independent bookstores in the United States, a place where book-lovers from across the country and around the world come to browse, read, and just soak in the ambiance of alternative culture’s only Literary Landmark”.
Cafes & Bakeries
From espresso to fresh cream cannolis, this this the neighborhood to find the best of the best!
- My Favorite Cafes!
- Reveille Coffee Co.
- Brioche Bakery & Cafe
- Caffe Trieste
- Caffe Greco
- My Favorite Bakeries
- Maison Nico
- Stella Pastry & Cafe
- Cavalli Cafe
- Mara’s Italian Pastry
- Liguria Bakery
Where to eat
Fresh pasta, fresh meatballs, and a glass of wine, what more can a girl ask for!? My favorites are..
- Cotogna (when you’re feeling bougie)
- Chubby Noodle ( not Italian but still delicious!)
- Sotto Mare Oysteria
- Il Casaros
- Golden Boy Pizza
- Tony’s (highly recommend the New Yorker)
Grab a drink at
- Grant & Green Saloon
- Maggie McGarry’s
- The Showdown
- The Saloon
- The Devil’s Acre
The Filbert Steps
Whether you’re looking to work up an appetite or need a good walk, I would recommend walking to Telegraph Hill. The Filbert Steps offer a scenic hike to Coit Tower.
Before you go home be sure to stop at the Molinari Delicatessen. This place is heaven! From sandwiches to Italian imports, you can find just about anything you need here. There’s always a line but it’s worth the wait!
There it is, my guide to my favorite places in North Beach! I hope you enjoy them as much as I do and if you plan on going anywhere else.. fuggedaboutit!