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Pier 39

It won't feel like a true trip to San Francisco without a stop at Pier 39. Just north of The Metro Hotel is the famous pier with its resident sea lions, street performers, scenic views (including Alcatraz Island), and specialty stores and restaurants.

Shops

Pier 39 is a great spot for souvenirs, gifts, and San Francisco-specific purchases. You'll also find apparel, jewelry, and body care shops too. Some of the shops that call Pier 39 home include:

  • Christmas in San Francisco
  • Sea Lion Center Gift Shop
  • Alcatraz Gift Shop
  • Aquarium of the Bay Gift Shop
  • The Cable Car Store
  • Houdini's Magic Shop
  • Only in San Francisco
  • S.F. City Wear

Restaurants

Get your fill of seafood right off the water with a stop at the variety of restaurants and cafes located around the pier. You'll probably want to stock up on some sweets and desserts from Chocolate Heaven or The Fudgery for fuel as you explore the pier's shops or catch some live entertainment.

Many of Pier 39's restaurants offer happy hours during the week from about 3 - 5 p.m., though some restaurants are more flexible with the hours. Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. Restaurant & Market, Eagle Café, Fog Harbor Fish House, Hana Zen, Mango's Taqueria & Cantina, Pier Market Seafood Restaurant, and Swiss Louis Italian & Seafood Restaurant all have special happy hour menus of discounted drinks and some with discounted small plates and appetizers.

Events

Pier 39 hosts live music daily at the entrance plaza with acts beginning at 12:30 p.m. and running through the rest of the day until the last show at 10:40 p.m. At the bay end of Pier 39, there's the Carousel Stage that hosts street performers with a variety of acrobatic, juggling, sword swallowing, and magical acts. Performances start at noon and run until about 9 p.m. with a rotating schedule of performers.

The pier is also home to several San Francisco events like the Anniversary of the Sea Lions' Arrival in January, Tulipmania in February with more than 39,000 blooming tulips, Fourth of July fireworks and celebrations, and Fleet Week in October.

Getting There

Pier 39 does have a parking garage at $10 per hour though using public transportation or taking a walk can be your best bet to getting to the pier. MUNI's F-Line streetcar stops near the pier and the cable cars drop off just a few blocks from it. The 8X, 8BX, 39, and 47 bus lines also service the area.

 

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