The Mission has a unique culture, one that's still holding on to its deep Chicano/a, Central American, Spanish, and Native American roots. As you walk the streets and avenues of Mission District, you'll find it reflected in the locally-owned restaurants that specialize in ethnic cuisine, colorful public murals, and historic monuments (such as the Mission Dolores, one of the city's oldest buildings).
Whether it's due to their proximity to the office or the hassle of owning a car, many residents choose to walk or bike to work, giving the city sidewalks a large number of walkers and the streets a large number of bikers. This number only grows in neighborhoods with younger demographics such as The Mission. However, this doesn't mean this area's sidewalks become any more congested than what you'll find in central and north-central parts of San Francisco where walking tourists abound.
Mission Dolores Park may have its early Spanish settlers to thank for its characteristically European feel. Slight grassy knolls and slopes cover the park area, giving picnics and sun-bathing an ideal setting during warmer West coast days. In addition to playgrounds and sports fields, there are canine play areas for your doggo to enjoy and run wild, unencumbered by a leash.
SoMa West Dog Park is a quaint dog-friendly space just north of the Mission District. Although next to a busy highway, highlights of the spot are the public wall murals, doggy water fountains, artificial grass to protect your pup from messy, muddy paw prints, and designated fenced-in areas for small and large breeds.
Another greenway you can enjoy with your pet that's a rests just outside of the Mission's borders is Eureka Valley Dog Run in Dolores Heights. It's a neighborhood favorite due to its convenient location next to homes and apartments.