District 5

Overall flavor

At the geographic center of the city, this area has a mish-mash of distinct neighborhoods, flavors and personalities. Comprising holdouts from the Summer of Love, old money, new money, and the home of LGBTQ life in San Francisco, my opinion is that district 5 comprises the most varied cultural diversity in the city. Expect a wide assortment of restaurants, great coffee and some cheeky shops. The weather tends to be less foggy in this area than the western sections of the city.

Urban or suburban

At the geographic center of the city, this area is considered urban because of its density.

Highlights/interesting tid bits

An unofficial area of district 5 is Liberty Hill, located between the Castro and Noe Valley. If you get the chance, make sure you go by 3650 21st St at Christmas time. The owners, Tom and Jerry, decorate to the hilt and it’s quite a spectacle. During the warmer months, make sure to visit Dolores Park, called Dolores Beach by locals. At Easter time, be sure and go to the ‘Hunky Jesus’ contest.
Icon James Hormel of Spam fame and former Ambassador to Luxembourg in the Clinton Administration, used to call Buena Vista his home; ‘Casa Spam’ was famously painted pink.


A wide variety from late 1800’s to modern, most of the housing stock is from the 1910’s to the 1930’s.

Housing stock

Some single-family homes, with a larger concentration of multi-unit apartment buildings. Some of these apartment buildings remain rentals, while others have been converted to condominiums. Most housing is in a rowhouse configuration, which looks attached.


Commercial area

Haight St., Castro St., 24th St., Market St. and Diamond St.


Mission Dolores, Randall Museum, Kite Hill, Buena Vista Park


Public transportation, buses, street cars and the underground (MUNI), BART in both Glen Park and the adjacent Mission neighborhood. Convenient to transit if you work downtown.

Private transportation – Access to Highway 101 and Interstate 280 are not far, but require vehicle access on surface streets to access.

Tech buses connecting to the Peninsula


Is generally difficult.