San Francisco Neighborhood Guide
San Franciscans call this neighborhood by two names. One is North Beach, which fits this neighborhood’s current status as a trendy place to live, eat and shop. The other is Little Italy, which fits the neighborhood’s ethnic past and still-current identity. Book lovers call this San Francisco neighborhood by both names. However, to them, the name matters little; it’s the incredible new and used bookstores that have made this a Mecca for bibliophiles for many decades. You see, North Beach is home to our fair city’s most famous bookstore, City Lights. City Lights continues to draw readers from all over the world who yearn to sit, read and relax in the very same rooms where Ferlinghetti, Ginsberg, Kerouac and other literary giants wrote, read and hung out in days past.
If the name Pacific Heights evokes mental images in your head of an upscale, privileged San Francisco neighborhood with grand old homes, incredible views and old money, your assumptions are absolutely right. The first generation or two of Pacific Heights residents were captains of industry, successful retailers, politicians and other moneyed, well-to-do types at the top of the social order. Suffice it to say that Pacific Heights was the place to live in San Francisco if you had the means. This neighborhood provides some of the city’s best views of the Golden Gate Bridge and the Bay, and it is a must-visit destination for most of our city’s millions of visitors each year. This neighborhood was one of the first to have service from our city’s famous cable cars, and they continue to transport San Franciscans to this day.
San Francisco’s Noe Valley neighborhood isn’t mentioned in many travel guides and doesn’t present the incredible photo opportunities that other city neighborhoods do. However, if you’re looking for a unique, authentic San Francisco experience, it’s worthy of your consideration. Noe Valley is a favorite location for film and TV crews. The neighborhood’s lovely Victorian homes, steep hills and views of the city have been featured in the movie “Sister Act,” the television show Nash Bridges and many other movies and TV shows.