San Francisco in August

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    San Francisco in August

    Dancers at the Nihonmachi Street Fair
    Adapted from --Mark--/Flickr/CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

    The city will be busy with summer vacationers and visiting the most well-known sights will require some planning ahead. Get tickets for Alcatraz and make reservations for other activities as far ahead as you can to avoid disappointment.

    Things That Look Like Fun to Do in August

    It's a good thing I can make lists because I find so many fun things to do that I'd forget them all. These are a few things on my "That Looks Interesting" list:

    Outside Lands Festival: Outside Lands is a big music, food, wine, and art festival, held in Golden Gate Park. Its headliner acts are names that everyone knows and they offer lots of music of all kinds - along with food and drinks.

    Eat Drink SF: This big event at Fort Mason is all about just what its name says: Great food and drink in San Francisco. It includes a wide range of seminars and three general admission events.

    Nihonmachi Street FairThis fair is held in Japantown, but it celebrates all aspects of Asian-Pacific American life. Events include traditional dances, musical performances, and - oddly - a muscle car show.

    Things That Are Especially Fun in August

    August is a good month to check out some of San Francisco's best beaches. Unless you live in the area and are accustomed to the Pacific Ocean, you may find the water too cold to do much more than dip your toe in, though.

    August is the final month of the season for the Stern Grove Festival. You can't beat the performers, the price (free) or the laid-back San Francisco ambiance at this outdoor summer concert series.

    August is the blue whale and humpback whale season around San Francisco. Find out how, when and where you can see them in the San Francisco whale watching guide.

    Summer evening activities continue through August. Check them out in the guide to San Francisco summer nights.

    Labor Day

    Labor Day is celebrated on the first Monday in September, but in some years, Labor Day weekend begins in August. To get some ideas on what you can do over the long weekend, check out these ideas for Labor Day fun in California.

    Special Events in August

    The annual events listed above happen every year, but they're not all that's going on in San Francisco in August. If you're looking for a fun concert, sporting event or theatrical performance try these resources:

    • All you have to do is sign up for a free account with Goldstar to get access to discounted tickets for performances and save on some San Francisco attractions. Even better, it's just as useful when you're at home as it is when you're visiting San Francisco.
    • For a look at local events, check the San Francisco Chronicle's entertainment section.
    • The Major League Baseball season runs from March through early October, and San Francisco has one of the prettiest stadiums around. If the San Francisco Giants are playing at home, watching a game is a fun way to spend a few hours. We like to go to afternoon games because it's warmer than night games. 
    • The Oakland A's play baseball across the Bay.
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    More About San Francisco in August

    Dr. Teeth and the Electric Mayhem at Outside Lands
    Tim Mosenfelder / Getty Images

    What to Expect from San Francisco Weather in August

    August is much like July in San Francisco. That means you may be coping with lots of fog and overcast days. Or not. Weather that time of year varies a lot.

    In August, you can expect about 13 hours of daylight for exploring the city. 

    These averages can give you an idea of what San Francisco weather is like in August, but they don't predict what things will be like when you visit. 

    • Average High Temperature: 70°F/21°C
    • Average Low Temperature: 56°F/13°C
    • Rain & Clouds Index: 0.07 inches (0.2 cm) rain, 66% sunshine

    If you want to compare August weather to other months,  check the guide to San Francisco weather and climate.

    Use the weather averages to get an idea of what things may be like, but it might be different when you visit. 

    Averages are helpful for planning ahead, but don't count on your trip being "average." Check the San Francisco weather forecast before you leave home.

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    What to Pack, What to Wear in August

    California Scenics San Francisco Souvenir Shirts
    Robert Alexander / Getty Images

    August is one of San Francisco's driest months, so rain gear isn't needed. If fog is forecasted, a warm, hooded jacket will be welcome. Shorts may sound like a good idea, but you could end up with some pretty cold legs if you're in them on the wrong day. In fact, unprepared, chilly tourists keep quite a few souvenir clothing shops in business, selling them sweatshirts and hoodies.

    More San Francisco by Month

    If you're just starting to plan your trip and deciding when to go, you may want to know what San Francisco is like in other months. You'll find that in these guides: 

    For a quiet time (although it may be rainy), try San Francisco in January or San Francisco in February.

    March is the beginning of spring but you can also get spring weather (and crowds) in San Francisco in April or San Francisco in May.

    Summer in San Francisco may not be what you think, especially if go to  San Francisco in June or in July, If you're looking for sunny days and lots of sunshine, try San Francisco in August.

    By fall, the skies will be clear and the crowds will be gone. In fact, the best times to visit may be  San Francisco in September or San Francisco in October.

    Holiday festivities make the end of the year a good time to go to San Francisco in November or San Francisco in December.