Haight Ashbury

Haight Ashbury / Alamo Square

Haight Ashbury

Haight-Ashbury, to put things bluntly, is the hippie neighborhood of San Francisco. The counterculture of the hippie-dippy ‘60s wore flowers in their hair, and that attitude is still prevalent today in Haight-Ashbury more than in any other San Francisco neighborhood.

The naming of Haight-Ashbury isn’t the most exciting story, but that won’t stop us from telling you. Henry Haight was a banker, and Munroe Ashbury was a city supervisor, which is ironic considering Haight-Ashbury’s current reputation.

In reality, Haight-Ashbury a one-of-a-kind neighborhood when, after World War II, the hippies chose the area of San Francisco with the least expensive housing to create their utopian society.

Haight Shop

It’s amazing to think, during the Summer of Love, 1967, more than 100,000 people crowded into the tiny neighborhood of Haight-Ashbury with hopes of creating the ideal society.

The introduction of the hallucinogen LSD and several other drugs, while entertaining at first, eventually became a strain on the neighborhood and its communal happiness.

The smiles and free love gave way to homelessness, poverty and overcrowding. And at the end of the summer of 1967, sadly, it was time for everyone to go home.

Haight Graffiti

Today, the corner of Haight and Ashbury, with yellow-painted crosswalks, is a focal point of the neighborhood. As you walk down the main drag of Haight, people-watching and passing head shops along the way, independent stores such as Amoeba Records, which sells actual vinyl records; or vintage clothing companies unique to the neighborhood will leave you dressing like a hippie and humming “Kumbaya” in no time.

If you happen to gain a contact high, Golden Gate Park and Buena Vista Park are just a few blocks away, for all your frolicking needs.

Haight-Ashbury’s reputation comes not just from its past, but also from its current unique style, especially compared to other neighborhoods of San Francisco. Hunter S. Thompson, Janis Joplin, The Grateful Dead and even Charles Manson called Haight-Ashbury home for these very reasons. When you tour San Francisco on your American holiday, don’t forget the historic little neighborhood of Haight-Ashbury. And bring your camera.

Haight Shopping

How Do I Find Haight Ashbury?

  • The main drag of Haight Street is located between Golden Gate Park and Buena Vista Park. Lower Haight, a more local portion of the neighborhood with a few good restaurants and bars, is located near the corner of Haight and Steiner Street.
  • You can use public transportation routes 6, 7, 33, 37, 43, 71 and the underground N (to Cole Valley) to reach the hippie locale.
  • To reach Haight Ashbury from Union Square you can ride bus 71 (around 30 minutes) or use the underground N to Cole Valley followed by a short walk (30 minute ride + walk).

Legs Out of Wall Art

Orange Sky Co. says:

Orange Sky SF Logo

Haight Ashbury is best visited during the daytime. You can check out hippie shops, browse thrift stores or visit a restaurant if you have the munchies. Be ready for one of the best people-watching spots in San Francisco. Different is the key word.

Location of Haight Ashbury