September in San Francisco: Weather, What to Pack, and What to See

Skyline of San Francisco

 

© Allard Schager/Getty Images 

After the holiday weekend at the beginning of the month, San Francisco residents breathe a sigh of relief that peak tourism season has ended. However, this is actually a perfect time for tourists to visit the Golden Gate City.

San Francisco Weather in September

September is arguably one of the best months to visit because of the weather. Around this time, San Francisco usually has clearer skies (compared with the more foggy months) and warmer average temperatures than in July and August. It's also usually one of the city's driest months.

Plus, you can expect about 12 hours of daylight for exploring the city. 

  • Average High Temperature: 73°F/23°C
  • Average Low Temperature: 56°F/13°C
  • Rain & Clouds Index: 0.26 inches (0.7 cm) rain, 72% sunshine

Averages are helpful for planning ahead, but check the San Francisco weather forecast before you leave home to get a more definitive idea of what the weather will be when you're there.

What to Pack

With less fog and no rain, light layers will usually be plenty. And an extra jacket or layer will feel nice in the evening.

You won't need dress clothes unless you're attending an event that requires them, and even at most nice restaurants, you can get away with jeans and a nice top. You might find a scarf useful in case it's extra chilly.

For women, add versatility to your wardrobe by packing dresses that look good with leggings or tights. They're easy to carry in your bag all day and slip them if it gets chilly or after dark. 

Rainfall is generally unlikely, but if your extra jacket is also rainproof, it can do double duty.

September Events in San Francisco

This diverse, cultural city offers a wide variety of events to check out all year, but here are some of the most popular happening in September:

  • Fringe FestivalIf you like the avant-garde, this one's for you, self-described as presenting exciting, uncensored, indie theater.
  • Autumn Moon FestivalThis fall festival celebrates the glories and mysteries of the moon.
  • Dragon Boat FestivalThe festival is one of the most important in Chinese culture, and the boat races are fun to watch.
  • Folsom Street FairYou'll see lots of leather (and lots of bare skin, too) at this festival that celebrates sexual diversity and freedom.
  • Ghirardelli Square Chocolate Festival: This one's a two-day chocolate celebration whose proceeds go to charity. Where the calories go, we aren't going to say.

September Travel Tips