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City Guide: What to Do in San Francisco

The bites, activities, and sights through the eyes of a local.

by Morgan Sullivan | February 07, 2020

When you're planning a trip to a new city, our best advice is to ask a local. So for our City Guides, we went to the source — our roasters. We're turning to the people who know (and love) their cities best for a tour of the unexpected, hidden-gem, must-see stops from the locals who live there.

This week, we're kicking off our City Guide series with San Francisco. Sure it's the home of The Golden Gate Bridge, Lombard Street, Fisherman's Wharf, and Alcatraz Island, but this Northern California destination is brimming with plenty of undiscovered attractions and under-the-radar hot spots — not to mention incredible coffee.

From a disc golf course to the best duck dish in town, here's what to do in the San Francisco Bay Area from the eyes of Equator Coffees' account manager and trainer Morgan Sullivan.

The Progress

1525 Fillmore Street San Francisco, California 94115 Open daily 5:30 pm

The Progress is a must-hit dinner spot. If you are celebrating or out for a special night, reserve a table. While the menu changes often, there is usually a shared duck plate that you can’t miss. For a more low-key time, grab a spot at the bar and order the counter-only Prog-Dog and a Potato Cloud. The hospitality here is top-notch.

PS Check out the bathrooms — they were nominated for “America’s Best Restroom” in 2018!

@theprogress_sf

Fort Point Beer Company

742 Valencia Street San Francisco, California 94110 Open daily 11:00 am

One Ferry Building #54 San Francisco, California 94111 Open Sunday to Friday 11:00 am; Open Saturday 10:00 am

This bold and bright Valencia Street spot is newly opened and perfect to enjoy an afternoon brew or a snack. For a scenic view of the piers, try the outdoor seating at Fort Point’s Ferry Building kiosk.

The menu here has a selection of playful yet elevated bar food. Whether you’re there with a group or on your own, there’s plenty of space to settle in. After you’ve refueled, walk over to Dolores Park to people watch and relax.

@fortpointbeer

Golden Gate Park Disc Gold Course

99 Marx Meadow Drive San Francisco, California 94121 Open daily 5:00 am

Twenty percent larger than New York City’s Central Park, Golden Gate Park has plenty of hidden gems. Above all, the Disc Golf Course is a favorite group or solo activity to spend a couple of hours outside.

You’ll need discs but no reservations, tee time, or fees to start. Throughout the park, you can also tour buffalo roaming, a carousel for the kids, and free salsa lessons on Sunday afternoons. Grab a bike to explore it all!

@disc-golf-course-golden-gate-park

Equator Coffees

2 Marina Boulevard Fort Mason Center Gatehouse San Francisco, California 94123 Open Monday to Friday 6:30 am; Open Saturday and Sunday 7:00 am

This Marin County-based coffee shop is the perfect place to fuel up in the morning. One of eight Bay Area locations, this is a favorite for travelers and locals alike. Grab a shakerato and sit in the window; you’ll be able to see the Golden Gate Bridge on a clear day.

Mornings aren’t the only time to plan a visit. Stop in for one of the most relaxed happy hours in San Francisco from 4:00 pm to close. Sunday morning Farmer’s Market draws a huge crowd — so go early but don’t miss it.

@equatorcoffees

Ruby Wine

1419 18th Street San Francisco, California 94107 Open daily 12:00 pm

Another favorite spot for remarkable views of San Francisco, Ruby Wine is a hidden gem. Mostly focused on bottle sales, the shelves are lined with a large selection of natural, biodynamic, and unfiltered wines.

Don’t be afraid to talk to the staff! They will walk you through the open bottles they have, so you can enjoy a glass in the shop. Seating is limited and you won’t find a typical bar scene here. Bring a book — or maybe just one friend — and taste something new!

@rubywinesf

The Center SF

548 Fillmore Street San Francisco, California 94117 Open daily 11:00 am

If you’re in the mood for quiet and cozy, this is the place for you. The Center is built around community and prioritizes offering a safe, comfortable space for all.

There’s tons to do here. Get a membership or drop in for a pot of tea and a spot on the couch. The menu is vast and entirely organic! Check out their event calendar or sign up for yoga any day of the week.

@thecentersf

Church of 8 Wheels

554 Fillmore Street San Francisco, California 94117 Open Friday 5:00 pm; Open Saturday 3:00 pm; Open Sunday 7:00 pm

I’d argue that the best way to get over any busy week is to throw on some skates, give in to the music, and be a kid again! For under $20 (cash only), you can rent a pair of skates and spend as long as you’d like on the rink.

Each day begins with kids of all ages though they transition into adults-only around 7:00 pm. Make sure you’ve made dinner plans before or after, as you’ll mostly find candy necklaces and Ring Pops at the counter.

@the-church-of-8-wheels