San Francisco is a famous city with a culture all its own. The 'city by the bay' has a rich history and has featured prominently in many stories, movies, books and events. Living here means that there is rarely nothing to do.
Weather in San Francisco is usually cool and often cloudy. Winters are frequently windy and summers are usually foggy. However, the city tends to enjoy a temperate climate that rarely freezes or get uncomfortably hot. Air conditioners are rare, but are also rarely needed.
Because San Francisco is an urban environment, housing is often fairly close together. As well as the infamous row houses, there are a lot of townhouses, condos, and high-rises. When searching for a rental in San Francisco, potential tenants should always ask about the parking situation, as it can be bad in the city. Like New York, San Francisco has a significant population of people who do not own cars.
The public transportation system in San Francisco is famous, including buses, BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit), a ferry that can be used to cross the bay, Muni (a light-rail type system), train stations and historic cable cars. It has also been voted as a very 'walkable' city, due to the presence of common commercial corridors within most neighborhoods.
San Francisco has named neighborhoods such as the famous Castro district, each of which has a distinct, individual flavor. Some neighborhoods are significantly safer than others, as well as more or less expensive. South San Francisco is not actually a part of the city proper, but shares a border with it.
San Francisco is fairly pet-friendly, especially as far as indoor cats are concerned. However, because many dwellings do not have yards, keeping dogs can be tricky. Despite this, many San Franciscans do have dogs, and there are places for them to play within the city. Be aware that 'pet rent' (an extra monthly fee for your pet) is common in the city.
Culture is a major reason that people choose to live in San Francisco, and the city boasts a diverse ethnic population. It has both a Chinatown and a Japantown, and some of the widest variety of ethnic foods in any city. The city also has a long history of supporting gay rights, as well as liberal and green activism.
The city of San Francisco is part of the county of San Francisco, which in turn is part of the world-famous San Francisco Bay Area. Many of the cities in the Bay Area share urban or suburban borders and have no clear delineations beyond those on the map. Because of high prices in the city itself, many people who work in San Francisco commute in from less expensive parts of the bay.