THE NUTS AND BOLTS
OF THE CITY'S HISTORY

We've crammed 150+ years of the City's history into a two-hour walking tour full of facts, fun, and frivolity. San Francisco in a Nutshell is an overview of everything from yesteryear that made the City what she is today. It’s a highlight reel of the Gold Rush on forward, hitting the nuts and bolts of what built this city—and it’s a lot more than just rock-n-roll!

This is a junior version of the Whole Shebang tour, but without all the pesky hills and tedious walking. It’s 99% flat and perfect for those who want to keep it on the level. Someone once said, “Whenever you get tired of walking in San Francisco, you can lean against it,” but they didn’t know about this easy downtown walk.

San Francisco in a Nutshell will give you the basic chronology of our favorite city by the bay, starting with her boom-town birth. Beginning as a tiny trading post, San Francisco quickly became the 10th largest city in America thanks to the nearby discovery of gold. Before long, people were coming from every corner of the planet and the West was Won—and very Wild.

San Francisco was at the right place at the right time, and everything she is today—cosmopolitan, crowded, crazy, and cultured—is owed to that tiny golden nugget. Learn and laugh as our guides put the pieces together for you with games, stories, and fun facts from the past.

San Francisco in a Nutshell discusses the highlights of the City's history and explains how her quirky past has created her unique personality, making San Francisco one of the most visited destinations on the planet.

This tour is a very general overview of San Francisco history—we'll even recreate the Gold Rush for you—and touches upon a number of local icons, such as Mark Twain, Cable Cars, and the Great Earthquake and Fire of 1906. For a more detailed history of the City, try one some of our other tours, which exlore fewer topics but go much deeper.

tour distance: about 16 blocks tour duration: about two hours
hills: one block of barely-perceptible uphill walking
ending location: the end of the California cable car line, near the Ferry Building

Because of the flat terrain on this tour, it's ideal for people who want to avoid hills and steps.

  • The Palace Hotel and some of the nicest restrooms in town!
  • The invention of Levi’s blue jeans
  • Maiden Lane, the swankiest retail in town (but not always!)
  • A hidden downtown park and train museum
  • “Rolling Js,” the Haight-Ashbury history game
  • The Pagoda Gate, entranceway to Chinatown
  • Lotta’s Fountain: message center and memorial from 1906

  • Plus games, gags, and other goofy fun

Advance purchase required. Tours usually sell out in advance!

Get information, check availability & buy tickets online
:
SF In a Nutshell Comedy Walking Tour

Or to purchase by phone, call Zerve at 800.979.3370  or  212.209.3370 (int'l)
Here are our regular tours.
We can also customize a fun tour for your group or family.
write us for more information

CHASING THE DRAGON
disorient yourself in the history and mystery of Chinatown

COME OUT TO THE CASTRO
San Francisco’s gay village from top to bottom

FLASHBACK
from the Summer of Love to the Winter of Discontent

FULL EXPOSURE
an expose into the full history of North Beach
GO WEST, YOUNG WOMAN
ten daring divas who did it their way
HOBNOBBING WITH GOBS OF SNOBS
the stinkin’ rich and dirty money that built Nob Hill
LUSCIOUS LOBBIES
intimate interiors of Nob Hill & Union Square

NUDE, LEWD & CRUDE
the rise of strippers, comedians, and beats in North Beach

SAN FRANCISCO IN A NUTSHELL
the nuts and bolts of the City's history

SHAKE & BAKE
the heartbreak of the great 'quake

WHERE'S THE F-ING BEACH IN NORTH BEACH?
a neighborhood tour sponsored by the letter F

THE WHOLE SHEBANG
three individual tours squeezed into a deluxe three-hour tour of Nob Hill, Chinatown, and North Beach

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