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Which neighborhood to stay in San Francisco?

Discussion in 'Non-Vegas Chat' started by spicole, Jan 7, 2018.

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  1. spicole

    spicole No shirt, no shoes... NO DICE!

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    We are planning to visit San Francisco over spring break. We will be there for an entire week in March. We have decided to rent via AirBnB. There are plenty of good selections available within our budget. Now we need some help on deciding which part of town to stay! :)

    Our 11-year old daughter will be with us and we plan on sightseeing most of the week. We are not night owls. We do have a car rented at the moment but may change our minds depending on our plans and access to public transportation. We visited San Francisco about 8 or 9 years ago and I am a bit familiar with the city layout.

    For those of you who are familiar with SF, where should we stay? Some of the leading candidates are in the Mission, Castro, and Noe Valley, but I am a bit concerned that we will be too far out from the city center. I liked the shopping and food in the Mission. Same goes for Richmond and Inner Sunset near UCSF - is this too far out? I am fine with some areas of town with "character" but we want to avoid truly rough areas.

    Thanks for your help!
     
  2. cjlangston

    cjlangston Low-Roller

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    the entire city of SF is only 49 sq miles, so distance from where you reside vs your destination in city is never too far to negotiate unless you are determined to walk only. Car rental would be mistake (unless you plan to go outside the city proper) as parking is the biggest issue in getting around. Go UBER and public transit.
    in terms of areas to avoid, maybe Hunter's Point is on that list.
     
  3. smartone

    smartone VIP Whale

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    In addition to Bayview/Hunters Point, which is way out where Candlestick Park used to be, I’d also avoid the lower Tenderloin and the Western Addition.

    It’s easy to be touring around the Union Square area, turn a corner and find yourself in “shitland” in a hurry.
    When down there, stay above (north) of Ellis and you’ll be fine. There’s a lotta quirky dive-bars in the Tenderloin area that white-suburban folks like to visit, but nothing your daughter needs to see. The Western Addition is west of the TL above Van Ness, but nothing to see up there anyways... just trouble.

    There’s also a housing-project that’s adjacent to the end of the cable-car line out at Fisherman’s Wharf that’s sketchy, but generally so much foot-traffic that it’s not an issue, unless really late at night.

    While homeless and pan-handlers are EVERWHERE, they’re generally just part of the landscaping and nothing more. Parking in most areas of The City is expensive and tough to find... public transportation and Uber/Lyft is the way to go. You’ll do a lotta walking too... but it’s great!

    I’ve always stayed at Union Square, but love your AirB&B idea!
     
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  4. DESPERADO

    DESPERADO VIP Whale

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    :wave:imo no to (as mentioned) Hunters Point, Mission, Castro, Tenderloin. i like the Union Square idea, plus i liked Japantown many years ago, BART makes everything very accessible to me. enjoy.:beer:
     
  5. Rodent Pack

    Rodent Pack S.S. Minnow

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    I don't know the availability of air bnb's in the Marina district, but it's about as safe of an area that comes to mind. Whatever you decide...have a great trip.
     
  6. makikiboy

    makikiboy VIP Whale

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    I had friends stay in an air bnb in the north beach area. They liked it because it had easy access to the buses to get everywhere, plus they like the Italian cuisine. They did have a car but used it only to go outside of San Fran. In town they just used the bus service to get around.

    I think it depends on what you want to do in san fran. If you like stores and shopping then I would recommend the union square area. Marina and fisherman's wharf area if you like the seafood, Ghirardelli square and pier 39 stuff. Outlying areas if you want to stay away from crowds. As others have said, San Fran is easy to traverse by Bart and bus.

    One thing I would recommend, stay away from the tenderloin area. Not very safe, especially at night. And as others have mentioned, beware as there are homeless and panhandlers all around.

    Buses are super easy to use. Recommendation, if you do use the bus ask for a transfer when you get on. the transfer is good for a few hours so you can get around on the same transfer.
     
  7. ken2v

    ken2v Wish I was in Bend

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    We're looking at a couple of VRBO.com places in the Marina and the wharf. We like being near the water, the Presidio, the eats on Russian Hill.
     
  8. JasonDeezy

    JasonDeezy Tourist

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    If you're going with an AirBnB then look into the West Portal neighborhood. It's a quieter part of the City, you can easily jump on the K-Ingleside train (our light rail system) to get to downtown or like another user said, catch an Uber/Lyft. If you do have a rental then it also gives you easy access to the freeways and you'll be close to Golden Gate Park and the Golden Gate Bridge.
     
  9. spicole

    spicole No shirt, no shoes... NO DICE!

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    Thanks to all who replied so far. All of your replies are very helpful.

    DESPERADO - any particular reason we should avoid Mission or Castro? I have been nixing the properties near the heart of the Castro since we will typically turn in early but have been looking on the south end. There are some attractive options in the Mission as well. Thanks!
     
  10. DESPERADO

    DESPERADO VIP Whale

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    :wave:spicole, only from past expirences. Brother lived in Mission yrs ago & was 2 crazy. Castro is more family friendly now. I'm a native Ca, so when I visit the city I like 2 stay in other cities in the bay area. I like Bart or the ferry for a day trip. U coming 4 vacation will have different view. SORRY if I steered u wrong. :beer:
     
  11. TIMSPEED

    TIMSPEED The biggest Degenerate on VMB

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    I would nix anything past the cascade range, LOL.
    I work at union square, and truthfully whatever neighborhood the “full house” house was at, stay there, lol.
     
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  12. M_ILIS

    M_ILIS VIP Whale

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    Once or twice we've stayed in the Pacifica area, which makes it like two vacations in one. The drive into the city isn't typically too bad.
     
  13. Sonya

    Sonya Queen of VMB

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    I enjoyed a stay at the Kabuki Hotel in Japantown for an event.

    For something really different and off the beaten path (but still in the city), take a look at this place: http://www.oceanparkmotel.com/rooms-rates.html
    It's rustic, but clean. The owner was wonderful. Couple blocks from the beach. I was passing through during Fleet Week to visit my sister. Hotel rates were crazy, but this place accommodated me and my dog without breaking the bank. I never felt uncomfortable walking in the neighborhood. Was a good location for visiting Ocean Beach, Lake Merced, the west side of Golden Gate Park and my sister's house (in the Presidio).
     
  14. spicole

    spicole No shirt, no shoes... NO DICE!

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    It's all good! :D I'm looking for any advice I can get!
     
  15. spicole

    spicole No shirt, no shoes... NO DICE!

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    Thanks for the reply! Some friends of ours stayed at the Kabuki last year and loved the area.
     
  16. spicole

    spicole No shirt, no shoes... NO DICE!

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    What do you think of the Hayes Valley? It's technically part of the Western Addition and not far from the Tenderloin. Too rough or worth a shot?
     
  17. smartone

    smartone VIP Whale

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    I honestly don’t know much much about Hayes Valley, except that in general the homeless enforcement along Market has pushed a lotta those folks further out into Hayes, the Castro and even out to The Haight.

    I thought you might enjoy this slideshow/article in today's SF Chronicle:

    http://www.sfgate.com/local/article/What-tourists-do-wrong-when-they-visit-San-12418823.php#photo-7449348
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2018
  18. spicole

    spicole No shirt, no shoes... NO DICE!

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    Thanks to everyone for the replies - they all helped!

    We ended up snagging a place right on Fell street along the Golden Gate Park "panhandle". We are excited!

    Thanks again.
     
  19. smerrian

    smerrian View from Bally's

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    SF is one of the best cities for visitors. They really make traveling there easy.
    They have a terrific public transportation system that includes the cable cars, BART subway and the buses. The cable cars and the subway run frequently; the buses, less frequently. Stay anywhere along the cable car or subway lines and you can get anywhere in the city. Personally, I like the Union Square area. Ton's of connections to get everywhere and nice shopping all the time.
    You can buy a public transportation pass for 3, 5 or 7 days at the main station at Market and Powell. Having one of these is great. You just flash the pass and it's hop on and off all the cable cars, subways and buses. It makes traveling the city so easy...and it's a good deal for us frugal folk.
     
  20. ken2v

    ken2v Wish I was in Bend

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    Ahhh, and those hotel parking charges in the City!!!
     
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