Lonely Planet Experiences: Mission Food and Street Art Tour
- Savor artisan donuts, Mexican pastries, tasty pies, tacos, and other delicious Mission treats
- Take in some of the Mission’s best street art on Balmy Avenue and Clarion Alley
- Hear stories of how the Mission came to be and what makes this neighborhood so unique today
- Wander through Dolores Park and finish your local tour at the famous Mission Dolores church
- Get to know the uber-cool locals of the Mission
Your 2.5-hour Mission tour kicks off with coffee and donuts. The donuts are special ones, though, as they’re locally sourced, made from sustainable organic ingredients, and delicious! Choose from an eclectic selection that ranges from bacon maple apple, to chocolate rose, or even lemon and thyme.
As you enjoy your first flavors of the Mission your local guide will provide an introduction to the district and its legendary food scene.
You’ll stop at a local panaderia, a Mexican bakery that captures the Latino culture and charm that is found throughout the Mission. Choose from a selection of pan dulce, or Mexican sweet bread, made daily in the bakery. To wash that all down, you can also try an agua fresca, a blended fruit drink that is sure to refresh.
Next you’ll head to Balmy Avenue to see the multitude of murals that line the street. The area’s artistic roots date back more than 30 years, as you’ll hear from your guide. The many themes depicted by the murals range from the plight of migrant workers from Latin America, to oppression in Nicaragua, and the gentrification of the Mission District.
The tour continues in search of pie. Whether you’re interested in some strawberry rhubarb, or perhaps a roasted cauliflower and black olive quiche, you’re sure to find your slice of happiness in the local spot you’ll visit with your guide.
Afterwards, you’ll hop on a bus for a short ride along Mission Street to one of the oldest and most beloved taquerias in the district. Sample a carne asada, al pastor, or another of this venue’s famous tacos.
Clarion Alley is next on the itinerary, where you’ll find the second-largest collection of murals in the Mission. These are a bit more contemporary than Balmy Avenue, but the vibrant stories are still to be found here, as is plenty of colorful graffiti.
Head to the center of the hipster scene for your last stop on the tour, and check out the Mission’s best thrift stores. Grab a final snack at one of the trendiest bakeries in San Francisco before finishing up at the Mission Dolores church.
- Local English-speaking guide
- Gourmet donut
- Mexican pastry
- Agua fresca' (fruit drink)
- Sweet or savory pie
- Bus fare (USD 2.00)
- Tips/gratuities for your guide