Take a look at the writers, artists and thinkers called the Beats who gathered in San Francisco in the 1950s during this fascinating afternoon walking tour. Follow in the footsteps of Beat writers such as Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg, and learn how they helped spark the hippie culture of the 1960s. Examine memorabilia at the Beat Museum and see Beat landmarks including City Lights Bookstore, Vesuvio, The Cellar and 1010 Montgomery on this intriguing journey into San Francisco's colorful past.
Begin your tour at the Beat Museum in San Francisco's North Beach neighborhood, where the Beat Generation congregated in the 1950s. While the Beat movement originated in New York, San Francisco is where this movement marked by tolerance, rejection of censorship,
environmental awareness, experimental drug use and spiritual seeking really took off.
Follow your guide into the streets of San Francisco to learn more about the lives of writers and visionaries such as On the Road author Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg, Ruth Weiss and Neal Cassady, and how they helped set the scene for the 1960s hippie movement. Your guide will share old photos of places that existed during the Beat Generation heyday and read literary excerpts referencing the historical sites on your tour.
See City Lights Bookstore, co-founded by Lawrence Ferlinghetti, who was involved in a high-profile obscenity trial for publishing Ginsberg's famous collection Howl and Other Poems. Check out Vesuvio, a bar frequented by Beats, and The Cellar, which was an influential jazz and poetry club. Pass by Beat hangouts in Chinatown and places Beats once called home — including 1010 Montgomery, where Ginsberg wrote part of Howl.
Your 2-hour cultural tour concludes back at the Beat Museum (admission included). Explore the first-edition manuscripts, letters and personal memorabilia at
the museum on your own to learn more about the influential and passionate lives of the Beat Generation.