Family fun, fireworks, sightseeing and partying. All of these abound as San Francisco prepares for the Fourth of July. Here’s a sampling of what’s coming up:

SF Breweries on a Roll for July 4th

First Wednesday Free Brewery Shuttle

What goes better with the Fourth than a cold beer? The timing couldn’t be better, coinciding with  Bayview’s First Free Brewery Shuttle, happening the first Wednesday of each month. The FREE shuttle is 6:30-10:30 p.m. and hosted by Southeast San Francisco breweries: Triple Voodoo Brewery, Smokestack At Magnolia BrewingHarmonic Brewing Speakeasy, Ales & LagersLaughing Monk BrewingSeven Stills Brewery & DistilleryFerment Drink Repeat – FDR Brewery, and Barebottle Brewing Company.


Waterfront Celebrations 

July 4th Celebration at Pier 39

It’s a full day of family fun crowned by spectacular fireworks as Pier 39 celebrates Independence Day. The festivities include live entertainment featuring 80s tribute band Tainted Love (3-6 p.m.). Look up at about 9:30 p.m. for incredible fireworks, with plenty of other excitement at the FREE 10 a.m.-10 p.m. event.

4th at the Wharf 

Pier 39 isn’t the only place for fun – 4th at the Wharf shows off the whole Fisherman’s Wharf District, adding Old Fisherman’s Wharf, Aquatic Park and Beach and Ghirardelli Square. With no shortage of street performers and famous attractions, you’ll find live music at both Aquatic Park and Pier 39. And the fireworks can be seen from all over. The daylong event is FREE.


Water Attractions

4th of July Fireworks Cruise

It’s the 24th annual 4th of July Fireworks Cruise, with fun, food and festivities on this three-hour sail. Guests can enjoy a cash bar and a FREE deli-style buffet. The Bay Lady holds 90 passengers in comfort (although it’s chilly, so dress warmly – and it’s not for kids under 10). But there’s nothing like seeing the fireworks from the water. The Bay Lady, operated by Rendezvous Charters, sets sail promptly at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $80.

Blue and Gold Fleet 

Set sail with the Blue & Gold Fleet (scroll down) for family-friendly surroundings and a great seat for the fireworks, departing from Pier 39/41. Take your pick of departures:  8 p.m., 8:15 p.m. (alcohol-free), 8:20, 8:30 and 8:40 p.m.  Tickets start at $85, with family deals available. Or opt for Angel Island with music, food and drinks. You get roundtrip ferry service with an optional tram ride to Battery Ledyard available. Tickets (click here for ticket and departure details) start at $72 for adults and $52 for kids 5-11.

Hornblower Cruises

Last (but certainly not least!) you can check out great options from Hornblower. Choose from a two-hour Beer & Lunch Cruise with free-flowing beer and champagne and a BBQ-inspired lunch buffet. Or select a four-hour Dinner Cruise. On either cruise, you’ll enjoy live entertainment and pass by the city’s famous sights. Lunch tickets start at $77, and the four-course seated dinner cruise at $213.50. Departure times vary at Pier 3, Hornblower Landing. Visit the above links for details.