The stunning Contemporary Jewish Museum was once a PG&E power station that world-renowned architect Daniel Libeskind transformed in 1998. Today, it functions as an ode to both history and the future. The museum features rotating exhibits that are simultaneously Jewish and San Franciscan, and always human and well-curated. Recently, a collection of poet Allen Ginsberg's photographs told the story of the Beat Generation, and an exhibit on spirituality and art revered the timeless. The CJM also hosts a variety of programs and has discounted entry on Thursday nights.
The CJM is one of my favorite museums in the Bay Area. The exhibits, focusing on Jewish identity and history through contemporary art, are always thoughtful and innovative. You don't need to be Jewish to find something here that interests and excites. Nearby are cafes, the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, California Historical Society and the Museum of the African Diaspora. Spend a day exploring all this neighborhood has to offer. Close to Montgomery Street BART train station.