San Francisco California City Guide


ZIPmouse San Francisco California City Guide

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San Francisco California City Profile

San Francisco is the fourth-largest city in California, although due to its small geographic size, is the second most densely populated city after New York City. The San Francisco Bay area has about 7 million residents. Settled by the Spanish in 1776 and named after St. Francis, modern San Francisco has a unique mix of characteristics that makes it one of the world's top destinations. "The city by the bay" includes steep rolling hills, the Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz Island, Golden Gate Park, and many eclectic and funky neighborhoods, restaurants, and hotels.

Starting after WW II, San Francisco become increasingly known as the center for alternative culture and lifestyles, including the beat generation, the hippie culture, women's liberation, and gay civil rights. San Francisco is still considered a major center of liberalism in the United States. It has a higher percentage of gays and lesbians than any other US city.

In addition to its architecture, landmarks, and geographic points of interest, tourist attractions include the many historic restaurants and hotels in North Beach, the Mission District, the Castro, and South of Market. In addition to its restaurants and hotels, San Francisco is known for its notable coffee houses, which were central meeting points for the counter culture.

San Francisco California Facts at a Glance:

  • The legacy of the Gold Rush in the 1850s turned San Francisco into one of the main banking and financial centers of the US west coast.
  • Due in large part to the tech revolution and dot-coms, San Francisco in 2005 was ranked #2 in the world in terms of billionaires living within the city.
  • San Francisco's historical contributions to gay rights and its consequently high concentration of gay people in the neighborhood of Castro have earned San Francisco the reputation as being the "Gay Mecca". San Francisco hosts the largest gay pride parade and festival in the world each June.
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