When it comes to the parenting life, us Bay Area folks are beyond #blessed. We can ski, surf and summit a mountain in the same day, the local kids’ menus on offer are worthy of a Michelin Star (or two), and we’ve probably never known the struggle of trying to zip a squirmy toddler into a full-body snowsuit. Here are 35 reasons why we wouldn’t want to be a parent any where else.

Linden Alley, Hayes ValleyPhoto: Erin Feher

1. Forget the cheesy photo backdrops at Sears—our whole city is a family photo shoot waiting to happen.

2. Grocery shopping is never a drag, since our stores feature wine tastings, coffee bars, cooking classes and more. 

3. We have the most inspiring moms around, from civil rights defenders to top techies to business-dominating boss ladies. 

4. We have a Cheese Country. And it is just as delicious as it sounds.

5. Our shopping malls come with playgrounds!

SHN Cinderella

Photo: SHN’s Cinderella

6. Forget Frozen on repeat—we can take our babes to Broadway.

7. The first famous railway ended here, and now we have plenty of places for little conductors to get on board.

8. Our kids can eat free every day of the week.

9. Our playdate options go way beyond the playground—how about pie happy hour or a spin around the ice rink? 

10. Homework time doesn’t have to be a drag around the dining room table—we have lots of inspiring places for kids to crack the books. 

kid in barPhoto: Photo courtesy of Mo Riza via Flickr creative commons

11. We don’t have to find a sitter just because we want to sip on some adult beverages—our bars welcome our babes, too. And don’t forget Wine Country.

12. We can admire redwoods almost anywhere—even in the center of downtown, SF.

13. We can skip the crowded water parks and splash in our pretty urban fountains instead. 

14. We are just a drive away from one of the most beautiful places on earth. 

15. One of the best campsites is located right in SF, and it comes with dinner!

The Wave Organ, San FranciscoPhoto: Emily Meyers

16. We don’t need to go to a museum to see incredible art—it’s all around us! 

17. New York, Shmoo York—our park is bigger, greener and boasts nearly a dozen free things you can do every day.

18. We have the very best in second hand shopping, from Flea Markets to kids’ consignment stores.

19. Our playgrounds have the best views, hands down.

20. We turned our military base into one gorgeous playground.

sfmomaPhoto: Erin Feher

21. We have the new SFMOMA, and it is amazing.

22. Our hot chocolate is world’s away from powder in a pouch—do you prefer Mexican, dark or lavender-infused?

23. We can keep our cars at home (or not even own one) and still see it all with our families.

24. There is absolutely no threat of a carousel shortage. 

25. Thousand of tourists flock here every year. We get to do all this stuff whenever we want!

Starbird.Breakfast spread

Photo: Starbird

26. Our fast food is healthy, eco-friendly and DELICIOUS.

27. We invented Secret Breakfast, and since then our ice cream game has never been the same. 

28. We are the road trip capital of the world—there is so much to see and do just a short drive away. 

29. We have the world’s best museums, and as locals we can enjoy all the extra perks of membership.

30. Our city is so rich! In history, of course. And we can step back in time in our own backyards.

31. We get to enjoy all the pretty leaves, but don’t have to shovel any snow.

For Fashionistas: Neve and Hawk Photo: Neve and Hawk

32. The Bay is bursting local kids clothing designers, so your littles will always look fresh (and original).

33.  An incredible island vacation is less than an hour away.

34. The Bay Area ranks as one of the most book-lovin’ places on earth, and we still have plenty of great independent bookstores where we can get our fix.

35. The very best hikes are around our very own blocks.

What makes you thankful to be a Bay Area Parent?

–Erin Feher