San Francisco has an allure that has been immortalized in myriad songs, movies, and pop culture. Why does this city keep me here? I adore San Francisco for the fog—yes, you read that correctly—as well as the delectable fresh food, world-class wine, awe-inspiring nature, and groovy social history. It’s a city that allows you to find serenity in nature, while keeping you busy, buzzed, and musically engaged.
1. Majestic Nature
San Francisco is surrounded by some of the most beautiful natural landscapes on the West Coast. Within a short distance of the city, you can find the Marin Headlands, Muir Woods, Mount Tamalpais, Point Reyes National Seashore, the beautiful blue of Lake Tahoe, Yosemite… the list is near endless. And within the city limits, you have numerous green spaces and miles of hiking and biking trails to discover.
2. World-Class Wine
Lucky for San Franciscans, this city is practically flowing with wine, thanks to its proximity to the world-famous wine regions of Napa and Sonoma. But no need to even leave the city with all its cozy wine bars, luxurious lounges, and even spots where the wine is poured from a tap.
3. Chilled Out
San Francisco is one of the chillest, most low-key major cities in the USA. As older nicknames of this town have reflected like "The City That Knows How", "The Paris of the West", or simply "The City". As of 2015, San Francisco was ranked high on world livability ranking because of the beauty and chill "big city" lifestyle.
4. Go Your Own Way
In San Francisco, people still like to be more individualistic and reflect the free-to-be-me culture.
San Francisco, like California in general, is more new and free. San Franciscans are more likely to believe that people have the freedom to go their own way. Therefore, the tech innovation flourishes in this city of individuality and freedom. Tech may have taken over the Bay, but the individualistic attitude of the hippies still, thankfully, has kept this unique and special.
5. Great food everywhere!
No matter what you may be craving—whether it’s a fat burrito, a vegan cupcake, tasty as sin Indian/Pakistani food, and of course artisinal pastries like Kouign Amann —San Francisco will have it. For a city only 7 by 7 miles, SF has a plethora of choices from incredible markets, ethnic food areas, and local health food stores like Rainbow Grocery, Real Food Company, Bi-Rite, and the countless farmer markets every day of the week.
6. The Awesome Fog
San Francisco has world famous fog, and I love it! There is even a popular social media account named, Karl the Fog! If you live in Fog city long enough you may even get obsessed with the fog and marine layer. The beloved Pacific Ocean is the main cause of the fog by providing atmospheric moisture and by its temperature.
7. Outdoor Workout Paradise
Between surfing at Ocean Beach, hiking the coastline, and practicing yoga in Golden Gate Park, there’s an outdoor activity for every type of person. San Francisco has spectacular trails and temperate weather, so it’s easy to get away with never having to pay for a gym membership. Walk and run around the city enough and you’ll build some incredibly envious leg muscles.
8. Hippies & Counterculture
SF is the birthplace of America's counterculture. SF was associated with the counterculture community during especially the mid-1960s to early 1970s.
Neighborhoods like Haight Asbury teem with history, music, and social awareness. The ideals of the hippies are still felt in the city's open, creative, and dynamic culture.
9. Rad Music
The San Francisco Sound emerged as an influential movement in music, with acts like Jefferson Airplane and the Grateful Dead achieving international prominence. These innovative groups mixed elements of folk, rock, and jazz to further develop rock's lyrical content. Today, the city is chockfull of record shops and live music venues, offering everything from classic rock to salsa to electronic. And, don’t forget Journey are from here—"Don’t Stop Believin’!"
10. Great Coffee Scene!
The coffee scene has quickly grown in just under the last decade, especially since the launch of local favorites like Blue Bottle and Ritual back in 2005. Between the light roast/nuttiness of the coffee at Sight Glass to the awesome and heart warming cup of Joe from Four Barrel in the Mission, you’ll always be wired and happy in Fog City.
These are several reasons why I love the city, and why San Francisco will always be home. What makes you love this magical city by the Bay?