San Francisco festivals
[ Insider Tips ]

The Ultimate Guide to San Francisco Festivals & Events

Thinking about adding something extra to your San Francisco trip? Why not attend one of the Bay Area’s top festivals and events?

Each year, San Francisco festivals and events appeal to everyone from comedy enthusiasts to wine connoisseurs. Whether you want to join in cultural traditions or learn more about the chocolate making process, there’s a festival or event for that in San Francisco.

Discover what events are happening in the Bay Area during your vacation.

Small meal on a white plate in a fancy restaurant with wine glasses
San Francisco Restaurant Week is one of the top San Francisco festivals.


San Francisco Sketchfest
January 9-26, 2020
Laugh until you cry as renowned sketch comedy troupes perform in this annual (and hilarious) festival.

ZAP Wine Festival
January 30-February 1, 2020
Fans of Zinfandel wines will love the ZAP Wine Festival in San Francisco featuring wine tastings, auctions, and a gala.

San Francisco Restaurant Week
January 22-31, 2020
Of all the San Francisco festivals, foodies love San Francisco Restaurant Week the most. And for several delicious reasons!

Fog City Magic Fest
February 5-8, 2020
Watch master magicians perform everything from sleight of hand to massive acts of the impossible.

Golden Gate Kennel Dog Show
January 25-26, 2020
If you can’t get enough of cute puppies and dogs, there’s no denying it—you’re going to the Golden Gate Kennel Dog Show.

Pink orchids
Attend the Pacific Orchid Festival in February.


San Francisco Giants Fan Fest
February 8, 2020
Sports and baseball fans alike flock to AT&T Park for autographs, behind-the-scenes tours, games, and entertainment.

SF Beer Week
February 7-16, 2020
Hosted at Pier 35, this week-long celebration of craft beer includes food pairings, seminars, Q&As, and of course, tastings.

Kaiser Permanente San Francisco Half Marathon, 10K, & 5K
February 2, 2020
Train hard and race in this annual Half Marathon, 10K, and 5K road race along one of the most scenic routes in the area.

Chinese New Year Parade
February 8, 2020
Celebrate Chinese New Year in San Francisco with the annual parade and festival in Chinatown.

Chinese New Year Treasure Hunt
February 8, 2020
Embark on a wild treasure hunt throughout Chinatown, North Beach, and other San Francisco neighborhoods to benefit the San Francisco Circus Center.

Pacific Orchid and Garden Exposition
February 4, 2020
Each year the San Francisco Orchid Society hosts a grand flower festival at the Hall of Flowers at Golden Gate Park.

Dark chocolate pieces stacked vertically with two raspberries placed on the left
Indulge in different types of chocolate at the Chocolate Salon.


International Ocean Film Festival
March 12-15, 2020
Dedicated to conserving and saving our oceans, this festival features captivating independent films related to various ocean topics.

San Francisco Salsa Festival
April 23-25, 2020
No, not the chip dip. This annual festival highlights the mesmerizing style of dance with performances, workshops, and competitions.

San Francisco Chocolate Salon
March 21, 2020
We all know which San Francisco festivals tourists with a sweet tooth will attend, and the San Francisco Chocolate Salon is one of them!

Macy’s Flower Show
2020 Dates TBA
This renowned flower show is held annually and boasts thousands of flowers in a grand display.

AT&T Park during a baseball game
San Francisco Giants / Facebook


San Francisco Giants Opening Day
March 22, 2020
Celebrate the start of the Major League Baseball season with the San Francisco Giants.

Polk Street Spring Wine Walk
April 10th, 2020
Get ready to explore Polk Street’s small businesses by sampling different wines in each store.

Northern California Cherry Blossom Festival
April 11-12, & April 18-19 2020
Hosted annually since 1968, the Northern California Cherry Blossom Festival bridges the Japanese and United States cultures each year.

San Francisco International Beer Festival
April 18, 2020
On top of the never-ending beer samples, this festival features trivia, music, games, and a Brewmaster Lounge.

Earth Day San Francisco
April 19, 2020 
Help protect our environment through this one-of-a-kind eco-friendly festival with music, art, food, and more.

Bay Area Dance Week
April 24 – May 3, 2020
More than 700 groups and performers flock to San Francisco for this week filled with free dance classes, performances, open rehearsals, and lectures.

Runners start the Bay to Breakers race
Bay to Breakers / Facebook


Cinco de Mayo
May 23, 2020
Celebrate Cinco de Mayo in San Francisco on Valencia Street between 21st and 24th Streets.

Bay to Breakers
May 31, 2020
This historic San Francisco race is an annual tradition where participants run from the San Francisco Bay to the Great Highway breakers.

Carnaval San Francisco
May 23-24, 2020
Complete with an exuberant parade, this global festival celebrates international music, dance, crafts, and more.

How Weird Street Faire
May 2020 Dates TBA
Thousands of people in specially made costumes come to San Francisco each year to celebrate peace, creativity, and weirdness.

SFMade Week
2020 Dates TBA
SFMade promotes the manufacturing industry in the Bay Area. This week-long celebration allows guests to get an inside look at the products made, technology used, and other aspects of the industry.

Man in black suit holding a trumpet made of brass
San Francisco jazz fans can attend two music festivals in June.


SFJazz Fest
June 27, 2020
For two whole weeks, fans of jazz music can attend a wide variety of concerts featuring acclaimed musicians.

North Beach Festival
June 20-21, 2020
As one of the country’s original street festivals, the historic North Beach Festival is not to be missed.

Yerba Buena Art Walk
2020 Dates TBA
As one of the San Francisco festivals hosted downtown, the Yerba Buena Art Walk combines art with giveaways, prizes, and other surprises.

Haight Ashbury Street Fair
2020 Dates TBA
The Haight Ashbury Street Fair has been held since 1978 and provides a place for visitors to celebrate peace, love, and happiness.

Frameline – San Francisco International LGBTQ Film Festival
2020 Dates TBA
This film festival highlights LGBTQ movies at various venues across the city. In addition, the festival has an awards ceremony and parties.

Stern Grove Festival
Spring 2020 Dates TBA
Enjoy free concerts every weekend in San Francisco thanks to the Stern Grove Festival!

Fillmore Jazz Festival
July 4-5, 2020
Can’t get enough of San Francisco’s jazz scene? Head out to the Fillmore Jazz Festival in June.

Orange fireworks explode over the Golden Gate Bridge at night
Celebrate the 4th of July in San Francisco


San Francisco Independence Day
July 4, 2020
From fireworks to boat parades, there’s plenty to do on Independence Day by the bay.

San Francisco Ethnic Dance Festival
June 13-14, June 20-21 
Watch as talented dancers perform traditional dances from around the world at this cultural festival.

Bay Area Playwrights Festival
July 17-19, 2020 & July 24-26, 2020 
The Bay Area Playwrights Festival has been the launching point for many award-winning playwrights including Annie Baker and Sam Shepard.

Renegade Craft Festival
April 4-5, July 11-12, & November 7-8, 2020
Three times a year, the San Francisco artistic and creative communities come together for a festival celebrating art in various mediums including graphic design, crafts, and fine art.

San Francisco Shakespeare Festival
January 25-26, February 20, 2020 
The San Francisco Shakespeare Festival offers free performances in various parks around the city each summer, making it one of the most anticipated San Francisco festivals.

Fans of Outside Lands Music Festival pose outside the festivals main entrance
Outside Lands Music Festival / Facebook


San Francisco Outside Lands Festival
August 7-9, 2020
If you’re into music, food, comedy, and art, there’s no better San Francisco festival to attend than Outside Lands in Golden Gate Park!

Nihonmachi Street Fair
2020 Dates TBA
The Nihonmachi Street Fair celebrates Asian-Pacific American Life through performances, food, community activities, and art.

Jerry Day
2020 Dates TBA
Each August, San Francisco honors Jerry Garcia, a Bay Area native and one of the greatest guitarists of all time.

San Francisco 49ers Opening Day
2020 Dates TBA
San Francisco’s NFL team kicks off the season each August with a huge opener.

Chinatown Music Festival
February 8-9, 2020 
Listen to contemporary, traditional, and upcoming Chinese musicians at this free festival in Chinatown.

Eat Drink SF
August 2020 Dates TBA
Learn about various cuisines, cooking techniques, and ingredients while sampling delicious dishes at one of the tastiest San Francisco festivals around.

Ghirardelli Chocolate Festival tents under the iconic sign
Ghirardelli Chocolate Company / Facebook


San Francisco Fringe Festival
September 10-19, 2020
Get your tickets to 84 performances by 21 different theater companies during the San Francisco Fringe Festival.

Comedy Day
2020 Dates TBA
Looking for a laugh or one hundred? Your sides will hurt from laughing so much when you attend the free Comedy Day event in Golden Gate Park.

Ghirardelli Chocolate Festival
September 12-13, 2020
Two whole days of non-stop chocolate samples, activities, and events? Sign us up!

Peak2Peak Walk
2020 Dates TBA
Each fall, this walking fundraiser passes by various, breathtaking landscapes along the 12-mile route.

Autumn Moon Festival
2020 Dates TBA
This cultural celebration offers kids activities, food, dragon parades, vendors, and more in Chinatown.

Oktoberfest by the Bay
September 2020 Dates TBA
Dance and cheer along to the 21-piece Chicago Bavarian Band while participating in German traditions.

Planes fly in formation over the San Francisco Bay and Alcatraz Island
Watch aerial demonstrations at Fleet Week.


Hardly Strictly Bluegrass
October 2-4, 2020
This free music festival features bluegrass musicians among other talented artists, along with food and fun.

Fleet Week San Francisco
October 4-13, 2020
Fleet Week boasts a jaw-dropping air show along with other military-related, family-friendly events and activities.

Wharf Fest
2020 Dates TBA 
This free annual event returns to Fisherman’s Wharf with chowder cook-offs, vendors, and activities for all.

Marin Music Festival
2020 Dates TBA
This free music festival features local bands, craft vendors, food trucks, and a waterfront view.

San Francisco Italian Heritage Parade
October 11, 2020 
This cultural parade and festival feature Italian American musicians, artists, chefs, and more.

January 10, 19, 27, 29, February 1, 8, 25, March 11 
A beloved literary festival, Litquake boasts hundreds of venues, activities, and events designed to grant participants’ greater access to literature.

SF Street Food Fest
2020 Dates TBA
As one of the most delicious San Francisco festivals, you’ll need to come hungry to the SF Street Food Fest!

An intricately designed and built sand castle
Discover epic sandcastle creations in San Francisco this November.


LEAP Sandcastle Classic
October 26, 2020 
Come discover some of the grandest sand castles you’ve ever seen at this sandcastle festival and competition.

Cinema Napa Valley
November 11-15, 2020
This Napa Valley festival celebrates film, food, and wine over the course of one epic week.

The San Rafael 40th Annual Parade of Lights and Winter Wonderland
November 27, 2020
Get into the holiday spirit in San Rafael. This event features the annual parade of lights along with family activities and a marketplace.

Union Square Holiday Tree Lighting Ceremony
2020 Dates TBA
Kick off the holiday season with the annual tree lighting ceremony in San Francisco’s iconic Union Square.

SF Auto Show
2020 Dates TBA
From classic cars to the latest sports cars, auto enthusiasts will love browsing the collection at the SF Auto Show.

Illuminate SF
December 6- January 1, 2020
Each winter, San Francisco glows thanks to 37+ outdoor art installations in 17 different neighborhoods.

The Great Dickens Christmas Fair
2020 Dates TBA
Immerse yourself in Victorian London with the characters from Charles Dickens’ novels! This event also includes food and a marketplace with numerous vendors.

Three ballerinas in white perform the Nutcracker ballet on an empty stage
San Francisco Ballet / Facebook


Nutcracker at the San Francisco Ballet
2020 Dates TBA
It’s a Bay Area tradition to watch the San Francisco Ballet perform the famed Nutcracker Ballet each winter.

Parol Lantern Festival and Parade
2020 Dates TBA
This evening of lights and laughter is a Philippine tradition brought to life in San Francisco.

Which San Francisco Festivals & Events Will You Attend?

Remember, people come from all over the world to attend the top San Francisco festivals. This means you’ll need to book your hotel room ASAP before they sell out!