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San Francisco

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San Francisco

Golden Gate Bridge in the fog I dont normally like big cities, but San Francisco was excellent. Like all major spots, there is loads of information on the web so I will not be comprehensive here. I'll just list some impressions and describe what we really enjoyed.

This picture is the view back towards San Francisco over the bay after having driven over the Golden Gate Bridge, make sure you see it.

We were dissappointed with the drive over the bridge because of all the fog. However, with the fog rolling in and the fog horn groaning in the background the view looking back towards the city once you are over the bridge just has to be experienced. We saw this by accident on our way north from the city we pulled into the viewing area just after crossing the bridge and saw this scene. It is worth driving out to see even if you dont intend leaving the city in this direction.

For an Englishman, San Francisco was ridiculously familiar. So many of the sights and sounds had seeped into my subconcious from the many films and TV shows that for instance when I heard the bells ringing on the cable cars, it was a well remembered sound rather than a first time sound. My first recommendation is to ride on a cable car. Wonderfull experience to see the steep roads seen in so many films.

Fishermans wharf and in particular Pier 39 are excellent, go see them. Also Chinatown is a must visit location (see photo below)

thumbnail of china townClick image to see full size photo (courtesy A.Tonkin 2001)

Site visitor post 9.11.01 Part of our trip took us to San Francisco & of all the places we visited, I'd say San Francisco was probably one of the nicest & safest of them all.

The place seems pretty clean & the people are friendly, there's plenty of things to do & sights to see. A trip to Alcatraz Island is a must & ferries leave frequently from Fishermans Wharf Quay (tickets have to be bought by agents on the quayside, or in local Motels).

Site visitor post 12.12.01
Tip even though we were at Fishermans wharf at 11.0 am we only just got booked onto the last trip to Alcatraz for the day at 6.30 pm.(take a jacket !) Therefore book in advance of your visit over the net or try and get the energy to come down to book the day you arrive in San Francisco or else be disappointed !
Tip there is a free bus from Fishermans wharf to Union square, sponsored by a store on Union Square, departing about every half hour.
Tip if you plan to go up the Transamerica pyramid building it is only open Mon Fri.

Site visitor post 4.1.03
We spent two weeks in San Francisco and it is one of the most beautiful places. Everyone is SO friendly and we felt very safe there. One tip though is to take some warm clothes as it can get very cold. We ended up looking like typical tourists in our freshly bought San Francisco embroidered fleeces! Drive a few miles out of SF in any direction and the temperature rises.

Site visitor post 16.4.03
When visiting San Francisco, I recommend a trip to Muir Woods National Monument. This is the location of the Sequoia sempervirens, which are the tallest species of redwood tree.

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