Celebrate New Year in San Francisco: Welcoming 2023 with Style

San Francisco stands as one of the premier destinations to ring in the New Year with style and excitement. This vibrant city offers a diverse array of festivities, ranging from sophisticated pub crawls for those aged 21 and above to captivating theater performances that captivate audiences of all ages.

When the clock strikes midnight on New Year’s Eve, you’ll have countless options to make the evening memorable. Embark on a picturesque cruise along the San Francisco Bay, where you can revel in the scenic beauty and enjoy live music onboard. Alternatively, you can join friends for a night out in the city, immersing yourself in the energetic atmosphere and partaking in the various entertainment offerings.

This year, New Year’s Eve coincides with a Saturday night, adding an extra touch of excitement to the occasion. Expect the city to be alive with joyous celebrations and an electrifying ambiance.

fireworks nye san francisco

Don’t worry if you’re still seeking activities for New Year’s Day. San Francisco has you covered with a plethora of options. Take a special New Year’s Day cruise, exploring the stunning sights of the bay while relishing the fresh start. Alternatively, visit some of San Francisco’s renowned attractions or unwind by watching thrilling college football games.

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Unforgettable Concerts, Live Music & Shows

San Francisco offers an impressive lineup of shows to choose from on New Year’s Eve. Prepare to be enthralled by exceptional performances at various venues across the city, including The Warfield, The Fillmore, and The Independent. These highly anticipated shows promise to make your New Year’s experience truly unforgettable.

>>Discover More NYE Live Music Performances

Spectacular Fireworks Over the Bay

One of San Francisco’s grandest events on New Year’s Eve is the spectacular fireworks display over the Bay. This annual extravaganza takes place near the Ferry Building, adjacent to the iconic SF Bay Bridge. The mesmerizing show commences precisely at 11:59 pm, bidding farewell to the old year and ushering in the new.

>>Essential Tips for Attending the New Year’s Eve Fireworks Display

Uniquely Memorable New Year’s Eve Cruises

Elevate your New Year’s Eve celebration by embarking on a remarkable cruise across the San Francisco Bay. Few places in the United States offer the opportunity to indulge in such a memorable adventure on this special evening. Whether you prefer a sophisticated dinner cruise or a vibrant party boat exclusively for those aged 21 and above, you’ll find a diverse range of cruise options available.

>>Explore Additional Options for Your NYE Cruise

Holiday Attraction Schedule

Be aware that many attractions in San Francisco close earlier than usual on New Year’s Eve. To plan your visit effectively, consult my comprehensive list detailing the closing times for the top attractions in the city on this festive evening.

>>Access the Holiday Attraction Schedules

Exclusive 21+ Parties & Events

Immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere of San Francisco by attending one of the city’s thrilling 21+ parties on New Year’s Eve. With numerous options to choose from, including those held at upscale hotels, these events promise an unforgettable night filled with music, dancing, and endless entertainment. What makes them even more appealing is that most parties have a fixed fee that covers drinks throughout the night.

>>Check Out the Top 21+ Parties for an Unforgettable New Year’s Eve

More Exciting Activities on New Year’s Eve in San Francisco

Theater Performances on New Year’s Eve in San Francisco

This year, San Francisco offers two exceptional theater performances on New Year’s Eve that are not to be missed.

Beetlejuice – The Musical

Tickets: Ticketmaster | TicketNetwork

Head to the Golden Gate Theatre for the first show of the evening, Beetlejuice. Starting at 7:30 pm and lasting a couple of hours, this thrilling musical production provides ample time to continue your night’s festivities or stroll to the waterfront and enjoy the fireworks display.

As You Like It

Tickets: Find tickets to all performances

The San Francisco Playhouse presents As You Like It, a captivating adaptation of Shakespeare’s timeless tale. With performances at 3 pm and 8 pm on New Year’s Eve, this play explores themes of steadfast friendship and complicated family relationships.

NYE at the SF Jazz Center

For a funky and soulful New Year’s Eve party, head to the SF Jazz Center to experience Monsieur Perine. This exclusive event offers two shows—a public show at 8 pm and a members-only show at 10:30 pm. The latter includes complimentary champagne and a thrilling balloon drop at midnight.

>>Visit the Official SF Jazz Center Website

Comedy Shows on New Year’s Eve

San Francisco boasts an impressive lineup of renowned comedians throughout the year, and New Year’s Eve is no exception. Whether you prefer an early show that ends well before midnight or a show that extends into the night to escape the bustling crowds, you’re sure to find a comedy performance that suits your tastes.

>>Find a Complete List of Performers for New Year’s Eve Comedy Shows Here

Fresh Start Festival

Indulge in a three-day outdoor music extravaganza at The Midway in San Francisco with the Fresh Start Festival. Kick off the celebrations with a warm-up performance on Friday, December 30, followed by two full days of music on New Year’s Eve and January 1. The festival’s headliners include Sofi Tukker on NYE and John Summit on Sunday, January 1.

>>Secure Your Tickets for This Year’s Fresh Start Festival

Get the Best Deals on San Francisco Hotels

Make your holiday season even more delightful by finding great deals on hotel accommodations in San Francisco. Browse through a variety of options and enjoy discounted rates, as well as additional perks such as complimentary Wi-Fi, parking, breakfast, and more.

Click the links below to start saving today!

Booking: Discover excellent deals for your upcoming stay in various locations across San Francisco.

TripAdvisor: Curious about the top-rated hotel in San Francisco? Read reviews and find unbeatable deals on TripAdvisor!

VRBO: Experience the local charm of San Francisco by booking an apartment or a room through VRBO. Find a diverse selection of remarkable accommodations that will make you feel like a true local.

Indulge in a Memorable Dining Experience

If you’re a fan of fine dining and wish to savor a sumptuous meal while celebrating New Year’s Eve in San Francisco, you’re in luck. The city offers a plethora of exceptional dining establishments for you to choose from. To secure a table at your desired venue, I recommend making reservations as soon as possible, as these popular spots tend to fill up quickly.

Consider the following options:

  • Fairmont Nob Hill
  • Tonga Room
  • Foreign Cinema
  • Michael Mina
  • Zingari Ristorante

Visit OpenTable.com today to make your reservations at these and other fantastic dining destinations.

Extended Public Transit Hours

On New Year’s Eve in San Francisco, public transit services extend their operating hours to accommodate the festive celebrations. Here’s what you need to know:

BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit)

The final BART train to the East Bay departs San Francisco around 1:30 am. Arrive early to secure a spot on this last train heading east. Please note that the only train departing from SF will be the Yellow line, so if you need to reach Richmond, Berryessa, or Dublin, you’ll need to transfer accordingly.

The last BART train heading toward Millbrae runs through downtown SF at approximately 2:10 am. Additional trains are scheduled to transport passengers out of SF after the fireworks display.

For more information about BART’s New Year’s Eve service, visit their official website.

On New Year’s Day, BART operates its regular Sunday service from 8 am until midnight.


Caltrain offers extra trains to San Francisco before the fireworks show and additional southbound trains after the event. Two additional northbound trains have been added to accommodate the influx of passengers.

Following the NYE fireworks display, the last train departs at 2 am. It’s advisable to head to the Caltrain station promptly after the show as these trains tend to fill up quickly.

Visit their website for detailed information on Caltrain’s New Year’s Eve service.

Caltrain also offers free rides on NYE starting at 8 pm until the final special train arrives in San Jose.

SF Muni

(San Francisco Municipal Railway) SF Muni offers free transit from 8 pm to 5 am on New Year’s Eve. Take note of the following details:

  • Muni Metro hours are extended until 2:15 am between West Portal and 4th and King Streets, as well as between West Portal and the Embarcadero.
  • Extra Owl Service is available for the following routes from 10 pm to 5 am: 5 Fulton, 7 Haight/Noriega, 22 Fillmore, 24 Divisadero, 25 Treasure Island, 38 Geary, 44 O’Shaughnessy, 48 Quintara/24th, 90 and 91 Owl, and the N Owl bus routes.
  • Avoid tagging your Clipper Card during these times, as regular fees will be charged.

Welcoming New Year’s Day

If you didn’t celebrate too vigorously on New Year’s Eve, you can enjoy various exciting activities on New Year’s Day in San Francisco. Here are some top recommendations:

Attractions Open on New Year’s Day

On New Year’s Day, several attractions are open for you to explore. Pay a visit to the Aquarium of the Bay on Pier 39, the SF Zoo, or the Japanese Tea Garden in Golden Gate Park. As a special treat, you can enjoy free admission to the stunning Botanical Gardens on this day.

Learn More: Opening Hours for Top Attractions on New Year’s Day

Tours & Cruises

Embark on a Bay Cruise Adventure—

  • a 60-minute ride around the SF Bay.
  • Cruise past notable landmarks such as Alcatraz Island, the Palace of Fine Arts, and Fort Point.
  • Experience the thrill of passing under the iconic Golden Gate Bridge twice while listening to captivating narration about the attractions and San Francisco’s history.
  • Multiple cruises are available between 10:15 am and 5 pm.
  • Find tickets for this Bay Cruise Adventure

Bike Across the Golden Gate Bridge

  • Join a guided three-hour tour from San Francisco to Sausalito,
  • biking along the scenic SF waterfront, crossing the majestic Golden Gate Bridge, and navigating some gentle hills until you reach the charming seaside town of Sausalito.
  • Along the way, take memorable pictures and learn fascinating insights from your expert guide.
  • Afterward, return to San Francisco via a ferry ride from Sausalito.
  • Reserve your spot today for this exciting biking tour

Best Places to Watch College Football

For sports enthusiasts, watching college football games on New Year’s Day is a popular pastime. Here are some fantastic sports bars where you can catch the action:

  • Nickies: Located in the Lower Haight neighborhood, this pub offers delicious all-day pub food, including beer-battered fish & chips and their famous Nickies Burger.
  • Kezar Pub: Situated in the Cole Valley neighborhood near Golden Gate Park, this iconic sports bar offers a wide selection of beers on tap and an extensive menu of American comfort food.
  • Final Final: This lively sports bar in the Marina District boasts multiple TVs, making it an ideal spot to catch your favorite college football games. Enjoy their famous buffalo wings while cheering on your team.
  • The Bus Stop: Located in the Cow Hollow neighborhood, The Bus Stop offers a relaxed atmosphere, pool tables, and ample seating to enjoy the games. Savor their tasty burgers or opt for one of their vegetarian options.

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