San Francisco is a beautiful place to visit in the large state of California. It is known for its gorgeous scenery and tourist attraction, but is it safe to walk around there?

Overall, San Francisco is a safe place to walk around and explore. Its crime is pretty low. But like any other large city, you will still face similar problems.

No city is without its downfalls. San Francisco is not exempt from this. There are isolated incidents that occur, so you should still take precautions. Here is everything you need to know.

Is It Safe To Walk Around In San Francisco?

Yes! San Francisco is a pretty safe place to walk around. You can find yourself exploring this wonderful city all day if you’re not paying attention. There are so many places to see!

While walking, you may see people without homes and those that appear to have an addiction, but this doesn’t mean you aren’t safe. Most of the time, they keep to themselves.

Based on the crime rate and other incidents, you have a low risk of the following happening here:

  • Crime against women.
  • Scams
  • Terrorism

Most of the crime or incidents that would put your safety at risk is isolated to specific areas. If you know what those areas are, you can safely walk around and enjoy the scenery.

Areas To Avoid In San Francisco

So what are the dangerous parts of San Francisco? Most of the area is quite safe to walk around. You may just come across a panhandler here or there, but to be sure, here are places to avoid:

  • Tenderloin, more specifically at Turk and Taylor Streets
  • Mission District
  • Bayview
  • Hunter’s Point
  • Outer Mission
  • Western Addition
  • South of the Market (SOMA)

Tenderloin is a part of the historic district and is a beautiful place to visit. Don’t miss out on it. Just avoid the streets listed above if you want to avoid any panhandlers.

Golden Gate Park is a great place to visit but has been known to be dangerous at night. If you want to see this tourist spot, ensure you go during the day to reduce the risk of an incident.

Many of these places have a high crime rate, much higher than the other parts of San Francisco. If you avoid these areas, you should be fine to walk around.

When Is The Safest Time To Walk?

Like going to other places you are new to, the safest time to walk is during the day, especially in the morning. This doesn’t mean you are protected from crime. It’s just less likely.

You may be safe in some areas at night, but if you are worried about something happening, especially if you are traveling alone, the daytime is your best bet for being the safest.

What To Do To Keep Safe

When traveling, there are many things you can do to reduce the chance that you get robbed, or another incident happens. Here are things you can do to protect yourself:

  • Research
  • Don’t leave bags unintended
  • Move wallets to front pockets
  • Keep an eye on your surroundings
  • Don’t show off expensive items
  • Use bags with zippers
  • Wear comfortable shoes.


Always research where you want to go and what is around. You don’t want to go blind into a neighborhood without knowing what kind of neighborhood it is.

As exciting as it may seem to blindly explore the city, it could lead you to a dangerous situation. To avoid this, ensure you are familiar with the area you want to visit.

Do Not Leave Bags Unintended

This is more of a given. You should know not to leave your bags unintended, no matter how annoying or tiring it may be to carry them around.

If you think the bags will be too much of a burden, pack lightly. The less you have on you, the less likely you will be a target for pick-pocketing.

Move Wallets To Front Pockets

This merely reduces the risk that someone can take your wallet. It is easier to grab something out of your pockets when it is out of your line of vision. 

Simply moving your wallet may save you a trip to the station or trying to get a new license so you can fly back home.

Keep An Eye On Your Surroundings

No, you don’t have to be like Jason Bourne where his head is always on a swivel for the enemy to come out for him, but taking note of your surroundings will protect you.

You can spot suspicious people and try to keep your distance. Heck, you may even notice someone trying to pick pocket, but either way, this will only help you out.

Do Not Show Off Expensive Items

Showing off expensive or luxury brand items will only make you a target for a mugging. Someone may see that you have money and want to take that item to sell off.

When traveling to new places and walking around, it is always good to be modest. Don’t show everyone your cards, as the saying always goes.

Use Bags With Zippers

Bags with zippers are harder to get into and steal things out of. It will make you less likely a target for those little thieves. Buttons and velcro you can easily bust open.

Just go with the zippers. If someone does try to steal from you, they are more likely to get caught because zippers can be noisy and they don’t always open easily.

Wear Comfortable Shoes

Wear comfortable shoes if you know you will be walking around a lot. Not only does this make it easier for you to run in case of an incident, but it’s also just nicer for your feet.

Heels or other formal shoes can be daunting and cause blisters. It will make you an easier target, and you don’t want that.


San Francisco is a wonderful place to visit. As long as you research and follow these tips, you can make your trip easy and safe. Try not to worry too much and just have fun!