Perched at the top of a small peninsula, San Francisco is made up of very different neighbourhoods situated side by side. Immense avenues cut their way through this small city, making their marks through Nob, Telegraph and Russian Hills, to name a few. The city was built on two faults: the famous San Andreas, which runs through the Pacific Ocean, and Hayward, which is runs through the land. This makes San Francisco somewhat prone to moderate earthquakes.
Like the rest of the United States, San Francisco uses the dollar.
Compared to the rest of the United States, San Francisco is not a huge city. It is the 13th biggest city in the country and the 4th biggest in California. Its population of 806,000 is spread across an area of 601km2 with a density of 1,340 inhabitants per km2.
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In 1579, English privateer Francis Drake anchored off the Californian coast and seized the territory in the name of the Queen. In 1769,
Spanish missionaries arrived in the bay themselves and founded a city, which they named after their brotherhood. San Francisco was born, and Spanish settlers started to move over from Mexico soon after. In the middle of the 21st century, San Francisco became a symbol of the Gold Rush and a refuge for all gold-seekers.
The town became known as the Golden Gate. It experienced a soaring economic boom in the 1870s and became a metropolis, attracting offices, shops and banks. Today the IT companies of Silicon Valley and the University of California, Berkeley make up the city's economic hub.