San Francisco has consistently been named one of the best places to trick-or-treat in the U. S. by Zillow and was in the #1 spot in 2017. That's because they have a fabulous house-to-candy ratio. Trick-or-treating there is very different than most places, with their high rise buildings, crazy amounts of traffic and small quirky neighborhoods nestled in the middle of the city. But these characteristics also bring on different Halloween concerns, so it's nice to know where the safest places to trick or treat in San Francisco are.
From high rise apartment buildings, to shop-friendly streets, there are many unexpected places one can trick-or-treat in San Francisco. Keep in mind that since Halloween falls on a weekday, most festivals and parades will take place over the weekend which will make the actual holiday a little less chaotic. You may even have to dedicate the evening entirely to candy gathering, but the question is. Apartment building trick-or-treating is one of the most efficient ways to go if you live in a high rise. But you can't just go into random buildings —especially ones with a doorman — and start ringing doorbells, so you may need to make arrangements with friends in the building before you take off.
Many shopkeepers generously distribute candy to the kids who come in on Halloween in a costume. Plus there are several neighborhoods throughout San Francisco that are receptive to "commuter" trick-or-treaters who are just visiting for the sole purpose of scoring the best candy. Other helpful items to bring on your walk: comfy shoes, a stroller for even a child who thinks they've outgrown one, and maybe a little wine in your Swell bottle.
Although it's hilly —so bring strollers or put your child in a wagon — Belvedere Street between 17th Street and Parnassus Avenue is a great place to trick-or-treat. The street is closed to cars, which makes it very safe to walk around collecting candy and checking out all the spooky house decorations. Go early, as it's such a popular neighborhood, houses are known to run out of candy.
There are two sections of Lake Street that are ideal for Halloween night. The first is along 5th and 9th Avenues and the second is between 23rd and 25th Avenues. According to Timeout, the Halloween in the Richmond District is full of families and great decorations and, "it’s a fun, peaceful and super family-friendly celebration."
They say fancy neighborhoods give the best candy and this neighborhood lives up to that. With beautiful homes and views (you may even get a peek into the houses as your child awaits their candy), it's even fun for the parents. The other advantage here is that it's relatively flat and easier for little ones to get around.
This one is hilly and probably best accessed by public transportation, but once you are there, Noe Valley is a terrific place to trick or treat. Many of the streets are closed to traffic. The shopkeepers on 24th Street give out candy and the Victorian houses are decorated in Halloween splendor.
Trick-or-treat through San Francisco's funkiest neighborhood and take in the cool costumes and decorations around you. According to The Domestic Beast, the Haight is the place for the most unique treats. If your kids are older than 13 and ready to try something new, head over to the Haight and take the Haunted Haight Walking Tour. Hear spooky ghost stories and learn of the neighborhood's macabre history. The admission is $22 per person and buying tickets in advance is highly recommended.
Inner Sunset/Forest Hill
For lavish decorations, head to the Forest Hill neighborhood, which is one of the best places in San Francisco to trick-or-treat, according to the website 49 Miles. The best time to go is 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. If your kids want to get some pumpkins to put them in the Halloween mood, head over to Clancy's Pumpkin Patch. It's open daily from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., including Halloween. You can bring the pumpkin home, paint or carve it, and keep it on your porch so Halloween will last a little longer.
Presidio Heights gets the honor of being named by Zillow as the best neighborhood to trick-or-treat in the best city to trick-or-treat. Maybe it's the mansions with their fabulous views of the Golden Gate Bridge and San Francisco Bay. Or maybe they just give out really good candy. 49 Miles suggests you go there in the early evening for the best loot.
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