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San Francisco Japantown
San Francisco Japantown

San Francisco Japantown

Japantown, San Francisco, California

The Basics

Japantown is bordered by Fillmore Street, Sutter Street, Laguna Street, and Geary Boulevard, with the main drag of Post Street running through the middle. Located just south of Pacific Heights, it’s easy to visit if you’re doing some shopping or dining along Fillmore Street. Alternatively, book a private city tour or a Japanese food tour to explore with a guide.

Wandering on foot is the best way to experience the neighborhood—check out Peace Pagoda in Peace Plaza, pick up a Bento box at Nijiya Market, browse the shops at Japan Center, or catch a movie at AMC Kabuki 8. For a more relaxing treat, head to Kabuki Springs and Spa, an urban oasis where you can get a massage or enjoy a soak in the Japanese-style communal baths.

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Recent reviews from experiences in San Francisco

star-5
This food tour offers a mix of...
Thyra A J, Jul 2016
San Francisco Food Tour: A Taste of Japantown
This food tour offers a mix of Japanese history and food for which Japan is widely known as well as a few surprises. This included stopping at some stores to buy items that are not easily found elsewhere. Additionally, it was very nice to become acquainted with others also taking the tour.
star-5
This is a great tour lead by a...
Mark K, Oct 2015
San Francisco Food Tour: A Taste of Japantown
This is a great tour lead by a knowledgeable guide that is into not only the food but the history of the area as well.
star-5
Loved the tour, and loved Alice! Great...
Jane B, Dec 2014
San Francisco Food Tour: A Taste of Japantown
Loved the tour, and loved Alice! Great food, and interesting information.
star-5
My partner and I went on the...
Stuart C, Nov 2016
San Francisco Food Tour: A Taste of Japantown
My partner and I went on the Japantown Tour food tour a couple of weeks ago and it was great. We were a relatively small group 5 of us - a couple of other guests had cancelled on the day and Lisa we were very lucky to have the company owner leading this tour and she was perfect kept us entertained, informed and fed as we wandered around the historic and vibrant area. The tour is a very interesting mix of culture, history and food...lots of food! We visited, amongst others, a cafe for sweet potato latte a delicious, caffeine free start to a morning tour!, a ramen restaurant for noodles and soup a real stand out and is the best ramen we have EVER tasted...and we have been to Japan - as we were in the city for a while we returned to the restaurant!, a Japanese market for snacks and a little shop around!, onigari very tasty rice and seaweed snack with tea, mochi sweet Japanese rice cake, okinamiyaki Japanese pancake/pizza and finished the tour with a visit to an Indian restaurant. I am sure I have forgotten some food stops along the way! Come hungry and expect to leave very satisfied/full. We have been on a number of food tours in different countries and this ranks as one of the best. We would recommend this food tour without hesitation.

Things to Know Before You Go

  • There is a lot of metered and free street parking available around Japantown, but pay attention to posted signs about prohibited parking during street cleaning or other times.

  • Japan Center has a parking garage.

  • If you plan to visit Kabuki Springs and Spa, make sure to check the schedule for the communal baths, as some days are male- or female-only.

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How to Get There

If you’re not driving, Japantown is easily reached by cab or ride-booking service, or take Muni buses 2, 3, 22, or 38.

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When to Get There

Most shops and eateries open in the late morning; early evening is a good time to take in the neighborhood vibe. The Northern California Cherry Blossom Festival is one of the city’s top events and takes place in April. The J-Pop Summit and Japan Film Festival of San Francisco are other annual events that draw crowds.

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Fillmore Street

From Japantown, Fillmore Street runs north through Pacific Heights to the Marina District. The blocks between Post and Jackson are home to stylish boutiques and upscale cafes, and locals gather there on evenings and weekends for shopping, dining, and coffee dates.

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