Holiday Inn Fisherman's WharfHoliday Inn Fisherman's Wharf
1300 Columbus Avenue
San Francisco, CA 94133

When searching for top San Francisco hotels near Fisherman's Wharf, stay in comfort at our full-service San Francisco lodging. Walk to attractions including Pier 39, Alcatraz, Bay Cruise ferries and Ghirardelli Square. Retreat to our San Francisco, California hotel to unwind in a room appointed with high-speed Internet access, in-room games and pay-per-view movies...more


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Hotel Listings

Holiday Inn Fishermans Wharf
1300 Columbus Avenue
San Francisco, CA 94133

Holiday Inn Express Hotel and Suites Fishermans Wharf
550 North Point Street
San Francisco, CA 94133

Courtyard By Marriott Fisherman's Wharf
580 Beach Street
San Francisco, CA 94133

Hyatt At Fisherman's Wharf
555 North Point Street
San Francisco, CA 94133

Argonaut Hotel - A Kimpton Hotel
495 Jefferson Street
San Francisco, CA 94109

Hotel Zephyr San Francisco
250 Beach Street
San Francisco, CA 94133

Best Western Tuscan Inn At Fishermans Wharf
425 Northpoint Street
San Francisco, CA 94133

Sheraton Fishermans Wharf Hotel
2500 Mason Street
San Francisco, CA 94133

Pier 2620 Hotel
2620 Jones Street
San Francisco, CA 94133

Fairmont Ghirardelli Place
900 North Point
San Francisco, CA 94109

...more hotels


Fisherman's Wharf came into existence after an earlier wharf, designed by Henry Meiggs and isolated by a seawall, needed to be replaced in the late 1800's. Known as Meiggs wharf, it was constructed in a North Beach cove, and it extended 1,600 feet into the San Francisco Bay. Finished in 1853, Meiggs Wharf served the lumber trade and became a mooring for fishermen and the Pacific whaling industry. The wharf developed into a great spot for swimmers and sunbathers. They rented weekend bathhouses and promenaded along its length.

Before the turn of the century, the Ghirardelli Chocolate Factory moved into the old Pioneer Woolen Mill that used to make uniforms and blankets for Union soldiers during the Civil war. The Chocolate Factory had a tremendous impact on the popularity of the wharf. Marco Fontana started the California Fruit Canners Association in a nearby brick building. A large canning operation began under the Del Monte label. Meiggs developed the architectural style that would later characterize Fisherman's Wharf. Unfortunately, Meiggs went into debt, and a local posse ran him out of town. He ended up in South America and died in 1877.

Back in the Gold Rush days, Chinese immigrants fished offshore in their junks harvesting oysters, salmon and shrimp to sell to a thriving population of new arrivals to San Francisco. The wharf served as the embarkation point for Asian imports and exports. Dungeness crab, oysters, shrimp and other seafood were sold on the beach by Italian fishermen. Their weekly income averaged from $2-$5 a week. Since bread costs a little less than five cents, and red wine was $5 a ton, the income met their needs. They used lateen-rigged sailboats copied from the ones used in Italy. The small craft were often painted green and had the name of a patron saint on the hull. Lusty arias from Verdi could be heard as they communicated their presence to one another along the fog-shrouded coast. Weather reports were non-existent back then, they depended on the moon to determine tides and coming rain plus playing porpoises indicated an imminent windstorm.

If a sailboat went into irons or without a breeze to fill their sails, fishermen would often use a grappling hook to attach the boat to the rudder chain of a nearby steamer to hitch a ride to the wharf. Since they fished near rocks, this prevented the boat's hull from destruction caused by the rocky shores. The steamer crew and fishermen would use "salty" language with one another until the boat reached its destination. These "rescues" were no longer necessary as gas powered Monterey Hull boats gradually replaced sailboats.

Fishermen could now go out further to fish, increase their fishing days and even use the gas power to haul in their nets or lines. Commercial fishing boats replaced these vintage crafts. Larger and with better cruising capacity, these diesel-powered vessels had sonar depth finders and two-way radios. The wharf remains home to active fishermen and their fleets. A chapel dedicated as a memorial to fishermen lies in an inner lagoon near Pier 45. A campanile along the side of the building is topped with a 1860 bell and a carillon with 1,200 melodies. It is the site for the age-old fishing tradition of the Blessing of the Fleet held on the first Saturday of October.

The cannery building transformed into a shopping center in 1963. In the 1970-s-1980's, Fisherman's Wharf developed into a tourist attraction offering fine restaurants serving fresh seafood, shops with sourdough bread, museums and a view of the Golden Gate Bridge.