Hipsters could be anywhere, and you might find them anyplace at all in the world. They travel, and they like to explore a variety of interesting locations. However, even with that being the case, there are spots in the world where you’ll find hipsters in disproportionately high numbers. California is a known hipster hotspot, with hipster-friendly neighborhoods in abundance. If you’re looking for interesting travel destinations in California, these California hipster neighborhoods offer you some cool venues to discover, and fascinating people-watching opportunities.

1. San Francisco’s Mission District

Mural, Mission District, San Francisco, California
Mural showing skull artwork, located on a wall in the Mission District, San Francisco, California. Photo Courtesy of Carol M. Highsmith’s America, Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division.

The entire city of San Francisco, California is in itself a hipster hotspot — so really, any San Francisco neighborhood could safely occupy the #1 spot on this list of best California hipster neighborhoods. However, San Francisco’s Mission District attracts a significant hipster crowd, and it gets our vote as offering some of the hippest and coolest establishments in all of California.

2. Venice Beach

Part “hipster” and large part “hippie,” Venice Beach offers a crowded beach town vibe with plenty of shopping, eateries, coffee houses and bars to explore.

3. Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara Farmer's Market
Photo showing one of the many farmers’ markets in the Santa Barbara, California area. The farmer’s market is a hipster hotspot, offering locally grown organic produce.

Santa Barbara offers every amenity a hipster could possibly want: coffee houses galore, farmers markets stocked with locally grown organic produce, boutique shopping, amazing wine, microbrewed beer, every type of cuisine imaginable, and the best selection of health food stores to be found anywhere in the USA. The only “hipsterish” thing this city is missing seems to be a Target store — and it’s debatable whether true hipsters would shop there anyway.

4. North Park in San Diego

North Park is an artsy area offering residents an upscale selection of eateries and venues, even including options for locally microbrewed beers.

5. Marina del Rey

Marina del Rey offers sun, surf, art galleries, cafes, boutique shopping and an upscale, trendy vibe.

6. The Uptown, Oakland

Oakland is an interesting city to visit, and the Uptown neighborhood offers visitors many interesting attractions, eateries and venues to explore. The area farmers’ markets are noteworthy for fresh local produce, and you’ll also find an abundance of cool restaurants, pubs and coffee houses to check out.

7. Elmwood, Berkeley

Berkeley has been a notorious hipster hotspot since before “hipster” was even a word in the dictionary. Of course, you’re likely to encounter a subset of the hipster crowd in any area of Berkeley. Elmwood is a particularly interesting neighborhood.

8. Silverlake in Los Angeles

The Angelenos who never venture east of the boulevard are probably not truly hipsters. Or at least, if they are, they’re missing out on visiting this hipster hotspot.

9. Melrose District

The Melrose district offers some of the most interesting shopping in the Los Angeles area, not to mention some of the most coveted real estate.

10. Downtown LA

Downtown offers the hipster crowd bunches of artsy attractions and interesting things to do.