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May 23, 2012 12:00 PM

First time in San Fran

This will be my first time visiting....arriving in the evening on a tuesday, thinking of going to Fishermans Wharf as my first thing to do.....any other suggestions?? Looking for nightlife and awesome food...staying near the financial district

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    1. re: Ruth Lafler

      First of all, don't go anywhere near Fisherman's Wharf.

      1. re: allyoucanet

        I agree; Fisherman's Wharf isn't a great place to really experience the food of San Francisco.

        1. re: allyoucanet

          If you want to be a tourist -- go to Fishermans Wharf. Feel free to ride the Rocket Boats, check out the USS Pampanito submarine and the other San Francisco Maritime Museum features, and be sure to go to tour Alcatraz -- it's worth it.

          Then check out the rest of the City for its excellent restaurants, dining and food. Seach this board for what you're interested in -- seafood, Chinese, Italian, etc., then you can get some more detailed recomendations here.

            1. re: buttercream68

              2 places I recomend if you haven't been here.

              Sotto Mare for seafood in North Beach. Simple, casual, no reservations. You may have to wait in line depending on time of day. Very fresh seafood, including Cioppino, which is big enough to split. Also in Noth Beach is Capp's Corner, a fun family-style American-Italian place that's been there for years.

              Yank Sing, Rincon Center branch, for Dim Sum. More expensive than some alternatives but very nice surroundings and high quality ingredients.

            2. re: Calvinist

              I stayed up in Fisherman's Warf my last trip up north. Although the area is not an epicurean paradise, (a) I got to wade through the crowds to see the sea lions cavorting on the pier, and (b) had a jaunty morning walk to Liguria Bakery to get some focaccia that I still dream of.

          1. Absolutely go to Saigon Sandwiches ( They have wonderful bahn mi sandwiches and be sure to check out the amazing food trucks ( Have fun!

            1 Reply
            1. re: kriinsf

              I have an addiction to the food at Henry's Hunan. There's several around the city. The one at Sansome and Broadway would probably be the closest to where you're staying.

            2. where are you visiting from?
              what is your budget?
              anything in particular in other places you've visited that you've liked?
              anything you don't like to eat?
              anything in particular you really like?

              4 Replies
              1. re: Dustin_E

                from fish and more fish!!! I dont want touristy places.......planning on public trans the whole time....I've been reading up on certain parts of the city.....would love to see live music...anythning means everything

                1. re: buttercream68

                  Still, I would avoid Fisherman's Wharf for fish (and like the similarly named South Street Seaport in NY or Navy Pier in Chicago, Fisherman's Wharf is the sort of tourist trap that is halfway to being a cheap carnival.). My personal fave seafood place is Waterbar; it's a little expensive, but worth it. Much cheaper is Woodhouse Fish Company, which I think is a good bargain. There are also many, many places with good sushi (a thread in itself, just search). Also I would check out one of our Peruvian restaurants -- a lot of kickass ceviche can be had in San Francisco.

                  For live music, just pick up an SF Weekly (available in a red dispenser around the city or online) and leaf through the music section. It will have fairly comprehensive city listings. For venues, my faves are the Independent and Cafe du Nord, but there are plenty of great places to catch music here.

                  1. re: buttercream68

                    gary danko
                    la mar

                    are my favorite places for fish, fish and more fish.

                2. From Fisherman's Wharf you're not far from some options near Jackson Square, North Beach, maybe somewhere like Lark Creak steakhouse depending on where you're from, and lots of fun, cheap eats in the Tenderloin (which is our skid row, only filled with art students and great Vietnamese food).

                  Check out Farm:Table, and Sightglass Coffee.

                  Beyond that general advice, you'll need to give us more direction what you like, or check out some of the other threads for people staying downtown.

                  1. You can dine quite happily at Fisherman's Wharf...

           long as you've selected Gary Danko or Albona. Otherwise, what everyone else said.