Lonely Planet Experiences: Teas, Temples, and Beatniks
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Come explore where east meets west, fortunes are told with more sincerity than your average cookie, and the legends of masters live on. Between the Beatniks of North Beach and San Francisco’s iconic Chinatown, we’ll give you a taste of teas, temples, and culture, all with a local flare. Join a local expert and uncover hidden gems on this city adventure hand-picked by the world's leading travel publisher.
Our guide to Lonely Planet Experiences: Teas, Temples, and Beatniks
San Francisco is famous for its colorful neighborhoods and interesting residents, and here’s your chance to experience first-hand two of its best neighborhoods.
Immerse yourself in the cultural and aesthetic contrasts between one of the largest and oldest Chinese communities outside of Asia, and the European charm of the Beatniks birthplace, North Beach.
On this San Francisco tour you will explore both Chinatown and North Beach, where the exotic East borders the birthplace of the Beat Generation culture.
Spend a few hours with your local guide discovering places you never knew existed, whether down unassuming alleys or in plain sight! Starting at the beautiful Chinatown Gate, your local guide will lead you through the bustling streets of this vibrant area.
Learn about the history of this Chinese community during San Francisco's gold rush, as well as America's train building boom. Stop in at one of Chinatown’s oldest bakeries for an authentic mooncake pastry - the traditional Chinese delicacies served here are so good even former President Bill Clinton has stopped in to try one!
From here, you will make our way over to Waverly Place to visit the acclaimed oldest Chinese temple in America, where you’ll have your fortune read as the smell of incense fills the air in this picturesque historic temple.
Moving on, weave your way between performing street artists to taste fortune cookies hot off the press (and see if this fortune matches the one from the temple!).
You will then wash down all these sweet treats with an in-depth tea tasting session where you will learn about the different types and flavors of traditional Chinese tea.
Next, it’s on to North Beach to see the famous hangouts of Beat poets Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsburg, like the City Lights Bookstore, which still publishes the works of local poets in San Francisco.
Get a feel for North Beach and the vibe of Little Italy as you wind your way through the cute shops and cafes of the Barbary Coast.
You will finish up our San Francisco walking tour at the gorgeous Washington Square Park, adjacent to excellent Italian restaurants, Coit Tower, and within easy access to public transport. It’s only been a few hours, but you’ll see – this San Fran tour is jam-packed with the hidden gems of two of San Francisco's most famous neighborhoods…it’s amazing what you can see when you've got a local to show you!
Chinatown Gate, at the corner of Grant Ave and Bush St.
Terms and conditions
Terms and conditions for Lonely Planet Experiences: Teas, Temples, and Beatniks
- Advanced reservations are required. Please select your chosen tour date at the time of booking.
- This is a child-friendly tour. Children between the ages of 6 and 11 inclusively are permitted on this tour at the rate listed above. Infants under the age of 6 are permitted to join this tour free of charge but must be included in the booking.
- CANCELLATION POLICY: Free cancellations for bookings cancelled with the operator up to 72 hours before your chosen activity date. No refunds are given for cancellations made within 72 hours.