Foster City, California

Super Hyphy

Leo Ryan Park Amphitheatre
Leo Ryan Park Amphitheatre
Twin Pines Park
Twin Pines Park

The Best Thing About Foster City?


When you ask locals to describe the best things about living in Foster City lots of different positives come up but location is on everyone’s list.

Foster City is just above the midway mark between San Francisco and San Jose, and for many being a bit more north is a plus because many go to San Francisco more frequently than San Jose for social occasions, events and weekend touristing. Foster City is right along the 101 Freeway, the primary thoroughfare for the west side of the bay area. Even cooler is that it is at the western end of the San Mateo Bridge. This means you can get to the east bay very fast and remove the Bay Bridge headaches that cities north of Foster City face. Finally, Foster City sits right on the bay so you get immediate access to the wonderful waterworld of the bay area without having to drive anywhere and it never gets really hot as the water keeps the area cool in the summer.

The Worst Thing About Foster City?

No Downtown

Foster City is one of the suburban cities lining 101 that has no downtown. It has shopping/malls and big box stores nearby but no fun, walkable downtown to build a commercial culture around. The city is close to other cities with downtowns; San Mateo, Palo Alto, etc., but a missing center is a sore spot for those who want a walkable chance for drinks and eats.

Lifestyle of Foster City

The city has done a nice job creating an outdoor culture in a suburban city. The streets of Foster City surround waterways on a peninsula that juts into the bay. That means water-based outdoor activities are always at your doorstep here. Additionally, the city is lined with wonderful bike and walking infrastructure. Families truly can spend a lot of their time on the water or on the paths, enjoying the A+ year-round pleasant climate. An additional bonus is that many of the parks in Foster City are built on the waterfront so locals enjoy both park and water play from the same spot. Boating, kayaking, paddleboarding, fishing AND then tennis, basketball, pickleball, playgrounds and open greenspaces are available throughout the city.
Outside of that you can expect a healthy family-focused suburban culture here. Tons of families, playing in little leagues and soccer leagues, enjoying an excellent school system and growing up in a highly educated population. The city is extremely safe, and plenty of kids bike around to friends and school without fear.

Community events are aplenty in Foster City, in spite of the absence of a downtown. Much of the action happens in the parks, community center and Amphitheater. This includes a year round farmer’s market, summer concert series, constant family movie and meal events, and great big family-centric holiday events like a big 4th of July festivity, Summer Day event, community bike rides, Halloween Festival and Holiday Tree Lighting festivities. Check it all out via the calendar of events.

Schools in Foster City

Foster City elementary schools are part of the San Mateo-Foster City School District and it’s one of the prime reasons families like to live here. It rates an A on and every school in Foster City is at the top of the rankings for the area. At the high school level the city is part of the San Mateo Union High School District that rates an A+ on so that’s all good. The only downside is there are no high schools in the district in the city proper so you have to head into San Mateo (right next door) for school.

Why You Should Move Here Now?

Waterfront Convenience

If you want to live in the Bay Area, on the water, and have that water-lifestyle built right into how your family lives then look at Foster City. There’s no suburban city quite like it for integrating the bay and waterways into how you live.