If you’ve ever lived here, or found your way into these parts, you already know there’s an embarrassment of riches here: weird things to do, see and feel in our beloved city. Within the weird, what our team has collected for you below are places and activities that might have missed your radar. What’s more, most of these events are free and can be experienced any given day, week, or month of the year!
If you’re a fan of the ocean’s magical workings, you’ll want to come here. Located on a jetty in the San Francisco Bay, the Wave Organ lets you experience meditation, the ocean, music and art appreciation all in one. An acoustic sculpture activated by the ocean’s waves, the sounds you’ll hear at the site will be subtle and haunting. Made up of 25 organ pipes at different elevations that catch the rise and fall of tides, it was originally inspired by artist Bill Fontana’s recordings in Australia. Come at high tide to get the best experience!
Open: 365 days a year
If you’re looking for a blast from the past and love a good arcade, Musee Mecanique is rich in history and mystery, making for a fun date or game night out with a group of friends. Found in Fisherman’s Wharf, it is the largest family-owned collection of coin-operated mechanical machines still remaining in our hi-tech world. There you’ll find a coin-operated fortune tellers, player pianos, love testers, historic pieces, and classic arcade games.
For all you scavengers out there, TreasureFest (formerly Treasure Island Flea) is your best friend. Crawling with affordable gems waiting to be adopted, more than 400 crafters, artists and vintage collectors come together with offerings of every variety. You won’t go hungry with more than 35 food trucks eager to feed you. Occuring every other weekend of the year, more than likely you’ll have a chance to take in the festivities.
On Moraga Street between 15th and 16th Avenue, you’ll encounter what’s known by locals as the 16th Avenue Tiled Steps. Its 163 steps are covered in vibrant handmade mosaic tiles in the shape of animals, fish, and seashells. The community-created sea-to-stars themed stairway, nestled between garden hillsides full of native Californian plants and a butterfly habitat feels designed for whimsical strolling with a coffee in hand.
"The best Taco Bell in the world" lies out on a beach about 15 miles outside of the city. On Pacifica State Beach, you can enjoy your favorite fast food in a bungalow with an oceanfront patio overlooking breathtaking ocean views and a special walk-up window so you can go from long walks on the beach one second, and lunch time! the next.
"See with your ears and feel with your bodies sounds as images, dreams and memories." This is simply what Stan Shaff, Audium's composer, asks of visitors. Audium is a theater for sound movement, where you'll find yourself in a building within a building shaped to offer you a magical listening experience. You'll leave with a crying appreciation for the spiritual way sounds, natural and electronic, touch our inner lives.
If you enjoy the idea of art meets nature, Wood Line is only one of four art installations by world-renowned artist Andy Goldsworthy, located in the Presidio of Golden Gate Park. There you'll find a man-made quirk of nature: a thick curvy line of branches embedded into the forest floor. The unexpected arrangement will throw your senses off balance (in the good way!) and get you second-guessing where (tree) life begins and ends.
- Play “Where’s Frank Chu?”
Frank Chu is a well-known and beloved figure in many parts of San Francisco for his very eccentric and public passions. On nearly any given weekday, you’ll find him somewhere in the heart of downtown between the Financial District and Union Square, shades on and protest sign in hand. His sworn enemies have included a wide variety of politicians, alien civilizations, the infamous 12 Galaxies, and more. If you’re lucky enough to catch him, say hello; more than likely he’ll have a thing or two to say about his causes that day.
It may come as little surprise to you that we at Treehut have a taste for all things weird and off-the-beaten-path. As human beings, we recognize that some of our best memories happen in those random trips, in-between days, flights of fancy, formerly-unexplored corners. We're also in the business of helping you capture and share those special moments in time, with handcrafted wooden watches you can engrave.