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San Rafael

The location

Student life



Please use the menu below to see what sightseeing, shopping, entertainment and dining options are available in San Rafael.

San Rafael has more than a hundred great restaurants that offer a variety of cuisines ranging from American to Basque, Chinese, Thai, Indian, or Italian. Many of these restaurants are very near the Student Home. The following are our favorites:

Restaurants and Food Court at Northgate Mall

There are many inexpensive restaurants and coffee shops at Northgate Mall. Try the Thai restaurant – it's really good!

The Northgate Mall food court is the nearest group of restaurants to the Student Home. It's only 1½ blocks north and can be reached in just a few minutes.

Chili's Grill & Bar

A favorite American restaurant with a bar area. It's great for burgers and beer, and (like the Food Court at Northgate Mall) is within easy walking distance of the Student Home. Try it for a relaxing “all-American” evening!

Sushi To Dai For

This is our favorite sushi restaurant outside of Japan! It not only has the most delicious, authentic sushi but also a fun atmosphere! Sit at the counter so you can watch the sushi chefs prepare the fish!

Bay Thai

There are many wonderful Thai restaurants in San Rafael. However, the tiny Bay Thai not only serves excellent food, it's also very inexpensive. And they have the best Thai ice tea. Give it a try to experience the authentic tastes of Thailand!

Taqueria San Jose

Don't miss this local favorite! Their burritos and tacos are absolutely delicious, and the green salsa on the tables, for eating with chips while you wait for your main course, is absolutely perfect. Very spicy – watch out!

Little Mandarin

A favorite of Dominican students! This restaurant serves simple Chinese food at very low prices! Alice, the owner, will be happy to accommodate your special requests.

Bamyan Afghan Restaurant

Kabobs and other delicious, authentic Afghan cuisine prepared by a married couple from Kabul. This is a pleasant restaurant with a friendly, quiet atmosphere; the place is decorated with Afghani paintings, clothing and scarves on the walls.

Muffin Mania

This local coffee shop offers more than 30 different muffins! All are home made and really, really good! The coffee is delicious (and strong) too! We know of local regulars who haven't missed a breakfast at Muffin Mania for more than 20 years without getting bored! Try the strawberry cream cheese muffin – it's much better than it sounds!

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