san francisco icons


Who is the mysterious Karl the Fog? Often seen hanging out around The Golden Gate Bridge

Our famous fog was a lump of nameless water vapor until the account @KarlTheFog popped into existence in August 2010.   Since then 362,000 followers and 11,000 tweets have covered the bay area.  Follow Karl on twitter @KarlTheFog  


Karl the Fog: San Francisco’s Most Iconic Resident

Have you ever visited San Francisco and felt like you were walking through a cloud? Chances are, you’ve met Karl the Fog. Karl is the city’s most famous resident and has been a fixture of San Francisco for as long as anyone can remember. He’s known for his thick, gray blanket that covers the city, making it one of the most picturesque and moody places on earth.

Karl the Fog is more than just a weather phenomenon. He’s a local icon, a source of pride, and a symbol of San Francisco’s unique identity. He’s so beloved, in fact, that he even has his own social media accounts! On Twitter and Instagram, you can find Karl sharing his latest musings and photos of the city he calls home.

Despite his sometimes gloomy appearance, Karl is a mischievous character who loves to play pranks on the city’s residents. He’ll roll in unexpectedly, obscuring the Golden Gate Bridge just as the sun sets, or suddenly disappear, revealing a breathtaking view of the bay. He’s a master of illusion and can make even the most mundane of days feel magical.

But Karl isn’t just a prankster. He’s also a symbol of resilience. San Franciscans have learned to embrace him and the challenges he brings. They’ve learned to adapt to his whims and to find beauty in the midst of the mist. Whether you’re a local or just visiting, you’ll soon find that Karl has a way of making you fall in love with the city, no matter what the weather is like.

So the next time you find yourself walking through San Francisco and find yourself enveloped in a thick cloud, don’t be afraid. Embrace it. It’s Karl the Fog, and he’s here to make your day a little more special. Just be sure to bring a jacket and an umbrella – you never know when he’ll come to play!

In conclusion, Karl the Fog is much more than just a weather phenomenon. He’s an integral part of San Francisco’s identity and a symbol of the city’s unique character. So next time you’re in town, take a moment to embrace Karl and let him show you why San Francisco is truly one of a kind.


Each letter in the Greetings from San Francisco postcard mural spells out the history, architecture, and tales of San Francisco.

The Immigrant Story Behind the Classic “Greetings From” Postcards  Long before Instagram, Americans showed off their travels using Curt Teich’s cheery linen postcards.

Linen-finished Greetings From postcards, named for their embossed linen-like texture, were tremendously popular in the United States during the 1930s, 1940s, and 1950s. There is no exact count, but deltiologists—people who study postcards—estimate that publishers developed over 150,000 different images and printed millions of copies. Cards typically depicted American scenes, venues, and businesses. They sold for a penny or were given away by local entrepreneurs or at tourist destinations.

Article: @SmithsonianMag Read more


“S” – Fisherman’s Wharf and Crab Wheel Sign

More Fisherman’s Wharf Info 

Fishermans Wharf Crab Wheel Sign








“A” – Postcard Row “Painted Ladies”

More Alamo Square Park, Postcard Row and Painted Ladies Info 

Postcard Row "Painted Ladies" San Francisco








“N” – Palace of Fine Arts

More Palace of Fine Arts Info 

Palace of Fine Arts









“F” – Golden Gate Bridge

More Golden Gate Bridge Info

Golden Gate Bridge








“R” – Chinatown San Francisco

More Chinatown Info

Chinatown San Francisco








“A” – San Francisco City Hall

More City Hall and Civic Center Info

San Francisco City Hall








“N”- Alcatraz Island and Prison

More Alcatraz Island and Prison Info


Alcatraz Island and Prison








“C” – Lombard Street – The Crookedest Street

Lombard Street Info 

Lombard Street - The Crookedest Street








“I” – Coit Tower and Telegraph Hill

More Coit Tower and Telegraph Hill Information

Coit Tower and Telegraph Hill








“S” – San Francisco Oakland Bay Bridge

San Francisco Oakland Bay Bridge The San Francisco–Oakland Bay Bridge, known locally as the Bay Bridge or as the Emperor Norton Bridge, is a complex of bridges spanning San Francisco Bay in California. As part of Interstate 80 and the direct road between San Francisco and Oakland, it carries about 260,000 vehicles a day on its two decks.

Oakland Bay Bridge








“C” – San Francisco Ferry Building

San Francisco Ferry Building and Embarcadro Info

San Francisco Ferry Building








“O” – San Francisco Cable Cars

More Cable Car Museum Information 

San Francisco Cable Cars








CA – California

“C” – California State Bird – The California Quail

The California quail (Lophortyx californica), also known as the valley quail, became the official state bird in 1931. A widely distributed and prized game bird, it is known for its hardiness and adaptability.


California State Bird - The California Quail








“A” – California State Flower – The Golden Poppy

Golden Poppy (Eschscholtzia californica) is also sometimes known as the Flame Flower, la amapola, and Copa de Oro (cup of gold). The Golden Poppy, belonging to the Papaveraceae family, grows wild throughout California, and became the state flower in 1903.

California State Flower - The Golden Poppy