Enjoy the beauty of dance from around the world at the San Francisco Ethnic Dance Festival. This year's event takes place from June 3 - 19. Performances are held each weekend during that time.
Heading into its 38th year, the festival showcases the diverse cultures and artistic abilities of dancers from all around the SF Bay Area. The 2016 festival includes world premier performances as well as a few festival premiers.
Featured dances this year are from all over the world including Bali, Bolivia, China, Congo, Hawaii, India, Lebanon, Mexico, and Peru. You will also see traditional dances from South Africa, Tahiti, Syria, and the continental United States.
Each weekend's performances are different. They also include shows that feature nine to ten dances each, so you will see a variety of types of dance in each performance.
If you love dance and want to check out something new, then I highly recommend checking out at least one of these shows.
All performances are at the Palace of Fine Arts Theatre (except the opening event) in the Marina District.
The Opening Event, Friday June 3 at Noon. Activities are located at the San Francisco City Hall. Performances by the Rotunda Dance Series.
This event is free to the public.
This weekend features a classic festival program featuring nine dance performances from around the world.
The second weekend features 10 traditional dance forms from around the world.
Performances by 10 Bay area companies, plus a Belly Dance Cabaret in the lobby theater about 45 minutes before the performance.
On the final weekend, you get the chance to screen "And Still We Dance." It's the 30th Anniversary for this one-hour documentary about the San Francisco Ethnic Dance Festival.
Film screening details:
Tickets for the performances range from $10 to $48 per person.
You can buy them in person at the ticket office at the City Box Office (180 Redwood Street Suite 100), online on their website (click here for details) or by calling them at 415.392.4400.
It's easy to get from both Fisherman's Wharf and Union Square to the Palace of Fine Arts in the Marina. These are the two best districts to stay in as they are close to the action.
These are my recommendations for both districts as well as for hotels all around SF:
If you are ready to book your hotel, head over to TripAdvisor.com to compare prices on several of the top booking sites. Click here to search for great deals today!
The Palace of Fine Arts is at 3301 Lyon Street in the Marina. You can reach the performances by taking public transit or by driving. Find details for both options below.
There are a few buses that will drop you close to the theater. Your best bet is to take the 28, 29, 30, or 43.
Take BART to the Civic Center Station. From there, pick up a Golden Gate Transit bus at Market and 7th and take it to Richardson Avenue. The Palace of Fine Arts is just two blocks away.
From the North Bay, you can take any of the Golden Gate Transit buses to the stop at Richardson and Francisco (the first stop after the Golden Gate Bridge). From here, walk two blocks to the theater.
Take BART to the Civic Center Station and pick up the Golden Gate Transit at Market and 7th. All of the Golden Gate Transit buses will drop you off at Richardson and Francisco.
There are three parking lots that are close to the theatre. They include the parking lot behind the Palace of Fine Arts, a lot near the Yacht Club, and another lot on Mason Street.
1. Palace of Fine Arts Parking Lot
In order to enter this parking lot, you must enter from the west on Marina Boulevard. For those coming from the east, you are not allowed to cross Marina Boulevard to enter the parking lot.
2. Yacht Club Parking Lot
You will find a secondary lot near the Yacht Club. This is the best option for anyone coming from the east.
3. Mason Street Lot
The third lot is on Mason Street.
You might also get lucky and find some street parking. However, be aware that this area is quite crowded and street parking is not always easy to find.
You will find several great places to eat in the Marina District on Chestnut Street. Here are a few of my favorites.
A16: This Italian restaurant features menu items from the southern part of Italy near Naples. Their menu changes frequently and includes items such as pizza, pasta, and large entrees. My favorites here include the funghi pizza, the brushetta, and the bucatini pasta. They also have a good wine list. Items range from $10 to $32 per plate with most falling into the $13 to $19 range. Reservations recommended, 2355 Chestnut.
Mamacitas: You will find some of the best Mexican food in the Marina at Mamacitas. My favorite dishes here include the Molotes, Ceviche, and the Carnitas tacos. You will find a wide range of dishes including a number of vegetarian options. Prices range from $9 to $21 for each item, with most falling into the $12 to $15 range. Reservations recommended, 2317 Chestnut Street.
Pacific Catch: This fresh fish grill is a more casual option. You order at the counter and wait for your food to arrive. They offer everything from Ceviche to fish tacos. They also have several non-fish items such as their Teriyaki Chicken Bowl, Pacific Steak Tacos, and meal sized salads (with or without meat). Prices range from $5 to $15 with most items costing between $10 and $13. No reservations required, but you may have to wait for a table. 2017 Chestnut Street.
Tacolicious: Another great place for a casual dinner in the Marina is at Tacolicious. Their menu rotates each week, but you will find a wide variety of taco options, guacamole, and soup. You will also find a few salad options, crispy shrimp cakes, and, one of my favorites, the fried sweet plantains. Prices here range from around $6 to up to $16. Most fall within the $10 to $12 range. No reservations required. 2013 Chestnut Street.
North Beach Festival: The North Beach Festival is one of the largest street fairs in San Francisco each year. It includes free live music, kids activities, and a variety of food and drink merchants. You can also shop around at more than 200 arts and crafts booths. Click here for details.
Father's Day Events: Father's Day is a special time in SF. Each year, you will find more than a dozen events to make your father feel like a king! Click here for my insider's guide to Father's Day this year.
SF Giants Baseball: Take in a game while you are in the city. The SF Giants play more than a dozen games this June at AT&T Park. Discover this month's calendar here.
Yerba Buena Gardens Festival: The Yerba Buena Gardens Festival offers free cultural performances from April through October every year. They range from kid friendly performances to local up-and-coming live musicians. Find their schedule of performances here.
Savings Tip: Save on tickets to top SF events and tours through Goldstar. This is my favorite place to look for ticket discounts as they offer tickets to almost 200 activities at up to half-off the full retail value. They range from walking tours around the city to events such as wine and film festivals. Click here to check out their current selection of tickets.
& Street Fairs