Summer is a magical time of year in San Francisco. The weather is perfect, warm during the day and cool at night, the beaches are sunny, and there's endless things to do, from street festivals to boat cruises to walking tours.
Experience San Francisco's exciting events this summer, including free outdoor concerts at Stern Grove. Spend the afternoon on SF's beautiful beaches and soak in postcard views of the Golden Gate Bridge. Enjoy outdoor dining and performance in Union Square, or enjoy a whale watching adventure on San Francisco Bay.
Here are Hotel Nikko's top picks for summer fun in San Francisco.
San Francisco Summer Events
- Independence Day 2021 in San Francisco – Celebrate July 4th in San Francisco. See the fireworks light up the night sky over Pier 39 and the San Francisco Bay on the Fourth of July. Many boat tour companies offer fireworks cruises on San Francisco Bay.
- Stern Grove Festival (Sundays at 2pm) – Experience a San Francisco tradition this summer. Enjoy incredible live outdoor concerts in the tranquility of the trees on summer Sundays at Stern Grove in the Sunset District. The Stern Grove Festival 2021 in San Francisco runs June 20 to August 29 with free performances by top bands and artists that include Joan Jett & the Blackhearts.
- Folsom Street Market (July 25, 2021) – Enjoy shopping for local art, crafts, and toys at this free event, from 11am to 6pm. Formerly the Up Your Alley Street Fair, this year's event on Folsom will be more intimate.
- Yerba Buena Gardens Festival (July – October) – Check out this summer event with free entertainment every week through October. Grab a spot on the Yerba Buena Gardens lawn in SoMa and enjoy live outdoor music, dance, and theater performances. Get exposed to classical, jazz, and traditional ethnic music and dances.
- Union Square Live (April to October) – Catch free cultural performances at SF's Union Square. Enjoy free entertainment, dance, music, circus, theater, and movies, in the plaza every Wednesday at 6pm and on Sundays at 2pm throughout the summer. Stop by for free salsa and tango lessons, concerts from local artists, and local drumming groups.
Summer Entertainment and Art
- Live Music at Feinstein's at the Nikko - This nightclub and cabaret inside Hotel Nikko near Union Square features intimate performances and musical acts. In July, the club presents Liz Callaway, Natalie Douglas, and Lillias White.
- Nightlife at the California Academy of Sciences – Party with like-minded science lovers every Thursday in July. Explore the museum's best exhibits and see the museum in a different light. Tickets ($23) include admission to the Morrison Planetarium.
- Traveling Museum Exhibits – Discover incredible traveling exhibits this month at the top museums in San Francisco. This month, you should check out To Teach and Inspire at the de Young Museum of Fine Art and Close to Home at the SF Museum of Modern Art.
Best Outdoor Activities in San Francisco
San Francisco is packed with outdoor activities and adventures all summer long. From biking through Golden Gate Park to picnics on Crissy Field to whale watching tours from Fisherman's Wharf, you'll discover endless outdoor action in San Francisco this summer. Pack your sense of adventure and hit the road for summer fun in the City by the Bay.
- Go biking, walking, and jogging along scenic roads and trails in Golden Gate Park.
- Take an adventurous whale watching tour from Pier 39 at the Embarcadero and see the humpbacks, marine life, and San Francisco's beautiful coastline.
- Enjoy waterfront sightseeing, shopping, and outdoor dining along iconic Fisherman's Wharf.
- Take one of the many San Francisco Bay cruises and sightseeing boat tours.
- See a San Francisco Giants game at Oracle Park overlooking San Francisco Bay.
- Enjoy an afternoon picnic at the Palace of Fine Arts in the Marina District
- Go outdoor bar hopping in the historic Castro District or Mission District
- Walk across the Golden Gate Bridge and snap pictures of the San Francisco skyline and the bay.
- Play the best golf courses in San Francisco, including Presidio Golf Course and Golden Gate Park Golf Course.
Best Summer Beaches in San Francisco
Explore San Francisco's most beautiful beaches this summer. Enjoy nature walks along the rugged coast, family picnics, and take in the most beautiful scenery in the world.
- Baker Beach – Tucked into the rocky cliffs, this one-mile sandy beach boasts amazing views of the Golden Gate Bridge and Marin Headlands. Enjoy scenic strolls along the shoreline, panoramic views, breathtaking sunsets, fishing, and wildlife viewing. Just beyond the beach you can hike a 2.4-mile section of the California Coastal Trail that winds through the bluffs.
- Ocean Beach - San Francisco's longest stretch of shoreline, Ocean Beach has powerful waves, a wide expanse of white sand backed by dunes, and striking scenery. Extending for 3.5-miles, Ocean Beach is a great spot for, jogging, walking, making sandcastles, and evening bonfires.
- Crissy Field Beach – Enjoy summer recreation and relaxation at Crissy Field Beach, framed by stunning views of the Golden Gate Bridge and San Francisco Bay. This beach is a popular spot for windsurfers and kite-boarders who glide across the waves. Enjoy walking and jogging along the waterfront Golden Gate Promenade that begins at Fort Mason and ends near the Golden Gate Bridge as part of the Bay Trail.
A Union Square Hotel in the Heart of San Francisco
Enjoy a summer weekend getaway or vacation in San Francisco at the Hotel Nikko. Find an urban oasis at our Union Square hotel with Zen-inspired luxury rooms and suites, an indoor glass enclosed pool, and a health club. Enjoy dining on modern Japanese fare at Restaurant ANZU and stop into Feinstein's, our cabaret nightclub with live performances throughout the summer.
Experience a summer retreat with warm Asian hospitality in the heart of San Francisco. Escape and renew with Hotel Nikko's seasonal and year-round Specials & Packages.