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PSJD: A NALP Initiative

Having Fun on the Cheap - San Francisco

Use PSJD's "Having Fun on the Cheap" pages, which are compiled by locals, to learn how to stretch your paycheck and maximize your fun while completing an internship or working in a big city. Contact us at if you have resources to contribute.  Thanks.

Berkeley: The crown jewel of the University of California system is situated in a quirky and fun town. The campus is a historic and fascinating site in itself, but it's also interesting to walk around the streets that surround it.

City Lights Bookstore: Need some inspiration? City Lights was the first to publish Alan Ginsberg’s Howl, and has played host to most important authors of the late twentieth century.

Fisherman’s Wharf: This San Francisco icon features everything from delightful handcrafted candies to a chapel. Take a long afternoon stroll or spend a night on the town here.

Golden Gate Park: In the shadow of the famous bridge sits a delightful park, and also some beach access. A great place for a run or stroll.

Palace of Fine Arts: Many events and shows at this beautiful rotunda theater are free. Enjoy music, architecture and landscaping in one sitting!

Stairs of Telegraph Hill: With 42 hills in San Francisco, you might not be looking for any more climbing. However, the view from these stairs (and the surrounding landscaping) cannot be beat.

Cheap Things to Do

Ballet: San Francisco’s world famous ballet company can be seen for just $10 with a standing room only ticket. The shows, which are held at the War Memorial Theater, are located in an area where you will want to make sure to take time to walk around.

Cable Car Rides: Could you really visit San Francisco without hopping on one of these? Make the most of your trip by familiarizing yourself with routes, and perhaps combine this activity with visiting something you wanted to see anyway, such as Nob Hill, which has several stops.

Coit Tower: This recognizable piece of the San Francisco skyline will set you back $5, but the view is well worth the ride up the elevator.

Exploratorium: While this museum charges admission, it is perhaps the perfect meld of San Francisco intellectual life and traditional museum features. If you think all museums are alike, be prepared for the Exploratorium to prove you wrong.

Half Price Ticket Booth: Looking to see a show? Do it on the cheap with the Half Price Ticket Booth located in Union Square. Even better, the proceeds from your purchase will go right back into San Francisco’s vibrant theatre community.

More Resources

TimeOut provides a thorough list of arts and culture offerings in the Bay Area.

The San Francisco City Government, unlike many cities, actively updates its webpage with news, events and information.

SF Gate keeps an up to date and eclectic list of things to do, and features many free or low cost community events.