6 Endorphin-Boosting SF Locales to Hit this Summer
Between work and all of life’s obligations, many of us forget to carve out time for what makes us happy. Whether you wish to be immersed in complete stillness or surrounded by buzzing excitement, these six places throughout the city each set the stage for a mood-boosting, endorphin-releasing experience.
1. San Francisco Zen Center – City Center
Introverts, self-proclaimed workaholics and anyone needing a break from the noise of everyday life may find happiness in the simplest activities of all—and the San Francisco Zen Center is the ideal setting. For 50 years, the Beginner’s Mind Temple (also known as City Center) location has opened its doors to the general public, providing a sacred space for meditation, reflection, yoga and more.
2. Dolores Park
This San Francisco staple truly has something to offer everyone. Situated on nearly 16 acres, Dolores Park offers the perfect setting for nearly any happiness-boosting activity you could think of—whether that be reading a book, having a picnic with friends, playing soccer or throwing the ball for your pup. Music and arts lovers can also find various events to attend over the summer.
3. California Academy of Sciences
One of the coolest indoor locales in San Francisco is the California Academy of Sciences. It’s an aquarium, planetarium and natural history museum in one. During the day, you can indulge the curious part of your mind as you make your way through the various exhibits—viewing magnificent creatures and learning about the past, present and future. Stop by on Thursday evenings for NightLife and enjoy music, creatures and cocktails with a thought-provoking new theme every week.
4. Twin Peaks Viewpoint
Whether you’re new to the city or enjoy a change in perspective every once in a while, Twin Peaks—just 20 minutes from downtown—offers an exquisite panoramic view of San Francisco. Though it can be enjoyed at any time of day, it’s particularly beautiful at sunrise or sunset. Our residents often opt for the 3.8-mile loop to the top and back for a well-rounded experience. After all, exercise releases endorphins and endorphins make you happy.
5. Ocean Beach
San Francisco is surrounded by some of the most beautiful natural terrain in America. Drive, bike, scooter or walk to the outskirts of the city—right next to the Golden Gate Bridge—to connect with nature as you watch the waves roll in. Light a fire in one of the designated pits, slide your wetsuit on and catch some waves (note: this beach is recommended for experienced surfers, as rip currents can be particularly high) or walk along the esplanade and take in the sand and sea from a near distance.
6. The Independent
Around the corner from Alamo Square is The Independent, one of the city’s best indoor music venues that hosts musicians from a wide range of genres. The standing room venue is low-frills (no dress code; the website simply states, “we just ask that you please wear clothes”) and frequently sells out, so we’d recommend checking their calendar and planning your night out ahead of time.