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Things to Do in San Francisco: Top Sights and Attractions


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#9. Check out Chinatown
Things to Do in San Francisco: Top Sights and Attractions

Lanterns in San Francisco Chinatown

©2014 Betsy Malloy Photography. Used by Permission.

Just 8 short blocks long and scarcely 3 blocks wide, San Francisco's Chinatown is one of the largest outside China. The style is what early 20th Century Western architects thought Chinese buildings should look like - and much is created just for the tourist.


Most Chinatown visitors stroll along one of the two major streets, buy a few souvenirs, eat, gawk and take photos. The more adventurous ones enjoy checking out the markets, herbalist shops, tea stores and alleyways.

Pros and Cons

This iconic San Francisco area can be fun, but it takes a little work to get off the well-beaten tourist track. On the downside, it's often very crowded, forcing visitors to shuffle down the street shoulder-to-shoulder.

More About Chinatown

If you need more information, check the Complete Guide to Chinatown. With its hints, you can get a glimpse of the "real" Chinatown in its alleys and shops, find out how to get there and when to go.

Take a photo tour of Chinatown to see what it's like.

See where it is on a map. It's the purple marker.

Don't Take Our Word For It

See how others rate Chinatown - from Yuck! to Awesome! For your reference, everyone's taste is different, our readers are a fussy bunch and they get even pickier in San Francisco, with the best-rated attractions in the San Francisco area getting 55% to 60% Awesome votes.

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