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University of San Francisco © Marcin Wichary/Flickr
University of San Francisco © Marcin Wichary/Flickr
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The 7 Best Things To Do And See By USF

Picture of Natalie Savio
Updated: 9 February 2017
Located next to the Inner Richmond, Haight, and NOPA districts, University of San Francisco (USF) is in an ideal location for a variety of activities, eateries, and establishments. In fact, the Golden Gate Park is just a couple of blocks away, and it’s filled with various attractions that could entertain you for several days or even weeks! So if you’re stuck on what to do around USF, here is our guide to the best things to do and see by the university.
University of San Francisco ©
University of San Francisco © | © An Mai/Flickr
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Golden Gate Park

Walk, picnic, or visit one of the many attractions at Golden Gate Park. One of the attractions is the California Academy of Sciences, a natural history museum and the greenest museum in the world with aquariums, various exhibits, a digital planetarium, a scientific research program, nightlife on Thursdays, and a green roof which covers 87 percent of the roof with seven grassy hills, offering a beautiful view of the De Young Museum — another museum you should check out! The De Young Museum is the sixth most visited art museum in North America and the 35th most visited in the world. The Conservatory of Flowers is also located in the park, along a greenhouse and a botanical garden.

Golden Gate Park, San Francisco, CA, USA

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Clement St Farmer’s Market

On Sundays from 9:00 am to 2:00 pm, Clement street is blocked off between 2nd Avenue and 4th Avenue for the Clement Street Farmers Market. Less than a 20-minute walk from campus, the farmers market, which is operated by the Agricultural Institute of Marin, has over 50 farmers and vendors, offering fresh, seasonal produce, local seafood, grass-fed meats, dairy products, baked goods, flowers, and even hot meals.

Clement Farmer’s Market, Clement St & 3rd Ave, San Francisco, CA, USA +1 415 472 6100

Haight-Ashbury

The Haight-Ashbury district is only a short walk away. On Haight street, you can enjoy listening to or purchasing music from Amoeba Music, shopping on any of the various clothing stores whether your style is modern, vintage, thrift, or just a bit odd. You can even buy or sell your clothes at recycled clothing stores such as Buffalo Exchange and Crossroads Trading. Lastly, stop for a bite to eat at any of the restaurants or even better, dessert at Ben & Jerry’s.

Amoeba Music, 1855 Haight St, San Francisco, CA, USA +1 415 831 1200

Ben & Jerry’s, 1480 Haight St, San Francisco, CA, USA +1 415 626 4143

Haight Street Shops ©
Haight Street Shops © | © Rosy/Flickr

Bookstores

Besides the USF Bookstore, there are still several other bookstores to visit near USF whether that be Kinokuniya San Francisco, a Japanese-based bookstore, or Green Apple Books, both located in the Richmond district. Nearby on Divisadero, there is a large comic book store, Comix Experience, and on Haight Street, you can enjoy The Booksmith, a small independent bookstore with bestselling books and hard-to-find titles, and Bound Together Anarchist Collective Bookstore, which, like its name suggests, is an anarchist collectively run bookstore with radical literature. For a more detailed list of what bookstores are out there, visit our guide to The 10 Best Bookstores Near USF.

Kinokuniya San Francisco, 1581 Webster St, San Francisco, CA, USA +1 415 567-7625

Green Apple Books, 506 Clement St, San Francisco, CA, USA +1 415 387-2272

Kinokuniya Bookstore ©
Kinokuniya Bookstore © | © Michael Ocampo/Flickr
Park Life ©
Park Life © | © Jason Saul/Flickr

Alamo Square

Located in the Western Addition district, Alamo Square is a park and residential neighborhood. Although the park is temporarily closed until September 21, 2016, you can still enjoy the view of the Painted Ladies: a row of Victorian houses with the downtown skyline behind it. San Francisco’s Painted Ladies are one of the most photographed sites in San Francisco and have even been used in movies, advertisements, and TV shows such as Full House.

Alamo Square Park, San Francisco, CA, USA

Painted Ladies, Steiner St, San Francisco, CA, USA +1 415 701 2311

Alamo Square, Painted Ladies ©
Alamo Square, Painted Ladies © | © Daniel Meacham/Flickr

Nightlife

There are several options for nightlife around USF. Head on over to Geary or Clement Street to go bar hopping at a few or all the bars there, including Ireland’s 32, The Abbey Tavern, Neck of the Woods, The Bitter End, and more. For nightlife at a Museum, try out Thursday nights from 6 pm to 10pm for drinks, music, and dancing at the California Academy of Sciences—be sure to check out the rooftop! Across the way, the De Young is also open for drinks at the museum’s café, dance performances and food, but only on Friday nights from 5:00 pm to 8:45 pm. If you’re looking for a bar close by with a modern feel, then swing by Barrel Head Brewhouse on the edge of the university’s campus. Still haven’t found one you like? Try any of our picks for the Top 10 Bars on San Francisco’s Trendy Haight Street or the bars and clubs we think belong on the Top 10 Bars On Polk guide.

California Academy of Sciences, 55 Music Concourse Dr, San Francisco, CA, USA +1 415 379 8000.

Barrel Head Brewhouse, 1785 Fulton St, San Francisco, CA, USA +1 415 416 6989

California Academy of Sciences Nightlife ©
California Academy of Sciences Nightlife © | © Micah Elizabeth Scott/Flickr

Restaurants

Among the many restaurants to choose from, Papalote Mexican Grill is the closest restaurant to USF. The taqueria is known for its salsa which customers can purchase with chips or even by the jar. Another popular spot walking distance from the university is Nizario’s, where you can order pizza by the slice or have it delivered. Looking for dessert? Try Genki Crepes on Clement Street. For more restaurants in the area, see our guide to the Top 10 Restaurants In NOPA, SF, The Top 10 Restaurants In Inner Richmond, or the Top 10 Restaurants on SF’s Divisadero Street. There are also several Thai and Mexican restaurants next door on Haight Street. For a more detailed list, check out our guide to the Top 10 Restaurant’s Near USF’s Campus.

Papalote Mexican Grill, 3409 24th St, San Francisco, CA, USA +1 415 970 8815

Nizario’s Pizza, 3840 Geary Blvd, San Francisco, CA, USA +1 415 757 7777

Genki Crepes & Mini Mart, 330 Clement St, San Francisco, CA, USA +1 415 379 6414

Papalote ©
Papalote © | © Jason Lam/FLickr