At the center of Broadway and Columbus lies North Beach, a neighborhood famous for not only its dining, but also its rich Italian culture and history and noted literary acclaim. It’s easy to forget as you look down from the breathtaking Telegraph Hill view, that this was once the home of greats such as Ginsberg and Kerouac, but take the time to travel through its Victorian neighborhoods and you’ll find that North Beach is much more.
Immigration of Italians during the late 19th century has given rise to some of the best restaurants in The City. Bookstores, delis and sloped, rolling streets give North Beach much of its charm, while residents also enjoy many of the hidden gardens and parks nestled amongst ancient homes—some of which have survived even the 1906 earthquake.
But whether you are looking for dining, dancing, reading, or just a bit of living history, you’re bound to be surprised and enchanted by North Beach and all of its amenities.
Just to the west of historic North Beach, you’ll find yourself in Russian Hill, home to bistros, antique stores, and the remnants of an oft-disputed Russian cemetery. Though the gravestones have long since been removed, Russian Hill has retained its name and has established itself as one of the more tourist-friendly neighborhoods near the wharf.
Most famous for its steep hills and winding Lombard Street, residents of Russian Hill are afforded exceptional views of The Bay from atop trolley-traversed hilltops and beautiful, green Hyde Street. This area provides the quaint distinction of cable car transportation to its neighborhoods, and those who live here are among numerous quaint shops and buildings that boast a variety of architectural styles that range from cottages to mansions, from condos to Spanish Colonials.
Those who live in Russian Hill are fortunate to enjoy some of San Francisco’s best walking hills, and on weekends, it is just a short cable car ride to the Financial District, civic center, or simply down the hill to eat crab at the beach.
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