If you do life right, you'll live and die in San Francisco... in which case you've hopefully got some time to cross all of these must-do, only-in-SF items off of your bucket list. If you do life wrong, you'll end up moving back to whatever nowhere town you came from. In which case, you have less time to do all of these must-do, only-in-SF things, so get on it now.
Either way... what are you waiting for? There are sights to be seen, foods to be eaten, drinks to be drunk, and merriment to be made. And all of it can only be accomplished in the best city on earth.
And eat a free apple. And (hopefully) take home a free poster.
Everyone should do it at least once. Even you.
But only if you’re wearing a legitimately well-planned and memorable costume. None of this “I went to American Apparel at 8pm last night and bought something tight and shiny” crap.
So. Much. Scenery.
Wear a jacket. Go to Sausalito. Get some ice cream. Ferry home.
Preferably a home opener or a playoff game, but really any game will do. Bonus points for eating garlic fries. 1/2 credit if you're kayaking outside of it.
Get there early to watch the sunset.
9. Eat dim sum
Hong Kong Lounge is a good place to start. Really, you should do this a million times before you die, though.
It’s the country’s longest musical revue for a reason.
Easter in SF > Easter anywhere else.
It’s the only place in SF where you can sip on a drink while enjoying a rainstorm with thunder and lightning.
You literally have to get it in the morning though; by afternoon they'll be long sold out.
Or two. Or six.
24. Go to the opera
25. Play the antique arcade games at Musée Mécanique
Yes, it means going to Fisherman’s Wharf, but that’s fine because while you’re there, you can...
And eat some clam chowder in a bread bowl while you’re there.
Meditation not required.
Or row one if that's more your speed.
While enjoying a bottle of Champagne on the DL.
Even better if you do it at the mid-way point of your run.
31. Eat seafood at Swan Oyster Depot
This place is one of the oldest restaurants in San Francisco, which makes some sense... you need time to make a crab salad that amazing.
BYO cardboard. (Although there’s usually some there.)
The Sound of Music, The Little Mermaid, and yes: even Frozen.
34. Hit up SF's best museums
35. Enjoy a drink in the back room at Tosca
Figuring out how to get invited back there is all on you.
And then read it.
37. Run the Lyon St Steps
Walking and/or just looking at the view from the top is also acceptable.
There’s a reason tourists like to go there. Trust.
Get the liquid courage from the very strong martinis.
Or fine: CDs.
Farmers market, oysters, cheese, hamburgers... okay, maybe two days?
Just be there early if you want to get a good spot.
49. Eat “The Big Donut” donut at Bob’s Donuts
It's Finish it in under two minutes to get your $8 back and your name listed on the Hall of Fame.
Wedding dress not required.
It doesn’t have to be from La Taqueria, but it should probably be from La Taqueria.
It was built in Japan and then shipped to San Francisco for the 1894 World's Fair.
Even better if it's bottomless.
54. Walk through the two-story Gingerbread House at the Fairmont Hotel
And then walk the labyrinth at Grace Cathedral.
55. Wait in line for the focaccia at Liguria Bakery
But get there early if you want to choose which of the 10 kinds you want or you’ll get “stuck” with onion.
56. Indulge in a super-sized sub at Submarine Center
And explore West Portal while you’re there.
57. Spot the wild parrots of Telegraph Hill
Pro tip: Telegraph Hill isn’t the only place you can spot them. Keep an eye out in Cole Valley and Fort Mason.
It’s been an elegant tradition since the early 1900s.
59. Eat ramen in Japan Town
It doesn’t have to be the fried chicken ramen at Suzu Noodle House, but you won’t be sad if it is.
60. Get a drink at every single one of SF’s oldest bars
Yes, all 18 of them.
Preferably with your lover. Hand holding not required because, ew, PDA.
62. Explore Sutro Baths
And then get a cocktail at the Cliff House (before the sun goes down).
63. Eat the “fried with pride” fried chicken from Frisco Fried
With a side of waffles, of course.
Even better if you do it from a friend’s rooftop.
65. Grow old here
Herb Caen said it best when he said, “One day if I do go to heaven... I'll look around and say, 'It ain't bad, but it ain't San Francisco.'”