Shopping in San Francisco: Where you can find the best hidden treasures


They may have just lost the Superbowl, but San Franciscans still have a lot to be happy about. Not only is the city home to some of California’s best cafes (which we may have frequented on several occasions during our visit late last year), but it’s not a bad city for a spot of retail therapy. So once you’ve done the obligatory cycle across the Golden Gate Bridge, cable car ride and visit to Alcatraz, head to these spots for some of the best shopping in the hilly city has to offer.

For vintage finds: Valencia Street, Mission District

Described by the New York Times as a ‘magnet for the cool and offbeat,’ Valencia Street in the Mission district of San Francisco is the place to see and be seen. A little bit grungy, a little bit Melbourne and a whole lot of hip, the street boasts some of the best hidden treasures that the city has to offer. So what are our favourite finds along the street?

For unique clothing, jewellery and homewares, be sure to visit The Voyager Shop. Stocking both established and emerging designers, The Voyager Shop is the perfect place to find a one-of-a-kind gift for a loved one… or yourself, of course! Our favourite find from the store? Soft as butter leather pouches and bags, all locally made by hand.

Another great find along this street is of course Dema, which stocks clothing and accessories that are a fun and modern take on vintage classics. Here it is the bright wallets and coin purses that really caught our attention, and the best bit? At $38 and $13 respectively, you can get one in every colour. For amazing vintage finds in pristine condition, head to Retro Fit Vintage or Schauplatz, where you are almost guaranteed to stumble upon incredible hidden treasures.


The shopping mecca: Downtown San Francisco

If department stores and designer boutiques are more your thing, look no further than downtown San Francisco for your shopping fix. It’s kind of shopping paradise with stores including:

  • Abercrombie & Fitch
  • BCBG Max Azria
  • Calvin Klein
  • H&M
  • Kate Spade
  • Tiffany
  • Red Valentino
  • Victoria’s Secret
  • Bloomingdales
  • Nordstrom

Haight-Ashbury, San Francisco

This section of the city personifies all that San Francisco is about… quirky boutiques, cute cafes and alternative bars. What’s not to love? Spend some time browsing here before heading over to the Golden Gate Park for some much needed post-shopping relaxation.

And let’s not forget where to refuel…


Shopping is hard work, we know that. So while you’re exploring the best retail spots that San Francisco has to offer, be sure to checkout these spots for a much needed caffeine hit and bite to eat:

Tartine Bakery, 600 Guerrero Street.
A foodie mecca, crowds line the block for the pastries and other goods on offer here and we can see why. The coffee is perfection, the croissants the best outside of Paris and the Croque Monsieur to die for. Definitely worth the wait.

Four Barrel, 375 Valencia Street.
Possibly the best coffee in San Francisco, and in the perfect location. (Hello again, Valencia Street!) Join the line of bearded, tattooed hipsters for one of the best Americanos you’ll consume in California.

Farm Table, 754 Post Street.
Drop in here on your way to the shops Downtown for a delicious coffee on the go, but make sure you get in early to grab one of the cheese and apple scones. They’re delicious, we promise! The breakfast menu is small but delicious and has daily specials, and the friendliest staff in San Francisco will make you want to visit every morning.

All photos by Lauren Kruger