Clement Street

San Francisco’s Most Eclectic Shopping

When people travel, they like to purchase items that they cannot find at home for souvenirs and the simple fun of treating themselves to something cool that they can wear, use, display or otherwise enjoy when they get home. If you’re visiting San Francisco and want to hit a hip and eclectic shopping district where you can still find bargains and one-of-a-kind items at affordable prices, you may want to check out Clement Street, especially between Arguello Boulevard and Seventh Avenue.

Clement Street is the main commercial strip of the Inner Richmond neighborhood and in addition to many different kinds of cool and locally-owned stores, it also features some of the best and most authentic Chinese food you’ll find outside of Chinatown. Informally known as “New Chinatown” for the restaurants, stores and gift shops featuring Chinese goods, Clement Street offers much more variety, such as:

  • The Clement Market
    A logical place to begin your exploration of the district, as it sits at the eastern end (literally and figuratively,) this is a farmer’s market where shoppers can sample tastes from many of the street’s stores and restaurants. Grab a cup of coffee nearby and take your time strolling through this market while you decide where to grab lunch later.
  • Green Apple Books
    One of the better bookstores in a city known for bookstores, Green Apple sells used and new books, records, CDs and other items. From the worn wooden floors to the air redolent with the smell of old books and quiet nooks for reading, this place is perfect for browsing and relaxing.
  • Toy Boat Dessert Café
    Even those who love to shop need to stop and recharge occasionally and this little café is the perfect place to do it. This café is decorated with antique toys and sells some of the best ice cream creations, cheesecakes, pies and other delectable creations in the city.
  • Burma Superstar
    If you have never tried Burmese cuisine, this would be the place to start that culinary journey. The line that often snakes out the door and down the block is the best advertisement for how good the food is whether you can pronounce the names of the dishes or not.
  • Fabrix
    If you are crafty with needle and thread or you’d like to be, this is one of the best places in the Bay Area to find hard-to-find fabrics, buttons, yarn, fasteners and other sewing essentials.
  • April in Paris
    If you are in the market for leather goods of all kinds, this is definitely the place to go. All the items are handmade on the premises and exceptionally well crafted. If you’re looking for a new purse, wallet, iPad cover, belt or other leather accoutrements, this is the place to go.
  • Seedstore
    If you like funky, eclectic clothing, plan on spending some time in Seedstore. This place sells new and vintage clothing for men and women, as well as other items to accessorize your purchases.

There’s a lot more going on here than the merchants listed above, but they are a decent representation of the many different types of shops you can explore during a leisurely stroll down Clement Street. Start at the Market in the morning and eat, drink and shop your way west for as long as you’d like! However, it’s probably best to get there via public transportation, as parking will probably be the least fun and most difficult part of the experience.