Regardless of your sexual orientation, no trip to San Francisco would be complete without a visit to the Castro, the country’s most famous LGBTQ neighborhood. Nearby Noe Valley, a village of wooden Victorian houses, has a touch of the Castro’s flair and an easygoing mix of hipsters and families.
Start your tour on the Castro’s eponymous main drag and visit the Castro Theatre, an ornate movie palace with a Mighty Wurlitzer-playing organist who performs before every show. On your way out, take note of the golden plaques that make up the Rainbow Honor Walk, paying tribute to LGBTQ pioneers. For more history, consider a tour with Wild SF Walking Tours or a visit to the GLBT History Museum, the first full-scale, stand-alone museum of its kind in the U.S.
The liveliest times of year are during Pride in June and the Castro Street Fair in October.