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Fascinating San Francisco

Do you have any quirky outfits that are too much to wear on a casual night out but not quite enough for a full blown costume party? Well, pack them in your bag for San Francisco, because this is the place to show them off!

I’ll race you to the bottom!

San Francisco is an ever-changing city and these fluctuations are evident throughout its history. In 1849, the discovery of gold in the area caused the population to flourish. Miners flocked to the city and abandoned their ships in the bay. Eventually, there were so many unclaimed ships that the city decided to scrap the ships and use the wood to build houses. In 1906, a devastating earthquake hit leaving the city in ruins and setting fire to the wooden houses. Around 1950, modern day San Francisco began to set the stage. The next decade was a notorious time of drugs, psychedelic rock, and violent protests. By 1980, the population of the city began to rise as tourists and immigrants made their way to the bay area.

The technology boom of the 2000’s left the city divided but by 2010’s, San Francisco recovered as more high income residents moved in. Today, San Francisco is a fearless mixture of tradition, and avant-garde.

San Francisco always has something fun in store, no matter what your interests may be. Here are my top selections of “must-sees” In “The City by the Bay”:

  • Fisherman’s Warf – This exciting neighbourhood in the San Francisco Bay Area includes The Ghirardelli Square, Pier 39, and restaurants galore!
  • Golden Gate Bridge – Walk or bike across the famous 2.8 km Golden Gate Bridge into the naturally beautiful Marin County. Enjoy scenic views and lovely photo ops along the way!

Sea lions lyin’ around Pier 39

Here’s a Pro-Tip: Although not geographically connected to the bridge, The Golden Gate Park offers plenty of attractions, including the oldest public Japanese Tea Garden in the U.S. Arrive before 10 am on Monday, Wednesday and Friday and admission is free!

  • Alcatraz – Alcatraz Island used to be a Federal Penitentiary but has since been closed and converted into a gripping attraction. I recommend touring it at night for extra thrill!
  • Twin Peaks – For the best views of San Francisco day or night, you can hike (or drive) up Twin Peaks, the second tallest peak in the city.
  • Visit a Museum – There are plenty of museums in San Francisco covering an array of topics. Some of my favourites are The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Asian Art Museum and Exploratorium.
  • California Redwoods – For an enchanting adventure, reserve a daytrip to the nearby Muir Woods. You can hike about (or hug) redwood trees that stand nearly 260 feet tall!

SF has the oldest manual cable cars in the world!

Here’s another Pro-Tip: San Francisco weather can vary day to day, even street to street! Make sure to wear layers in order to be ready for anything.

The San Francisco International Airport is about 21 km south of the city centre, however there are plenty of travel options. The most recommended is the local SF subway system also known as the Bay Area Rapid Transit, or BART. This will take you from the airport to many different stations. Other options include ride shares, private cars, shuttles and taxis. When in the city, I highly recommend taking a cable car around for a classic San Francisco experience! Renting a bike or walking are other great ways to see the city.

Here’s another Pro-Tip: San Jose Airport is about the same distance from the city as San Francisco International Airport, so check both airports for the best flight options for your stay.

For a big city, San Francisco is fairly small, so wherever you stay will be in good proximity to main attractions. For lovely bay views, some of my favourite places to stay are Hotel Vitale, Lodge at the Presidio and Hotel Zephyr, while the classy Ritz Carlton and the music lovers Hotel Zeppelin are more inland and closer to the heart of the city. Hotel Zetta has it all with modern décor, eco-friendly amenities and an “adult playroom” complete with billiards and shuffleboard.

Sourdough bread bowl and crab, the best of both worlds!

San Francisco is incredibly flavourful, and I don’t just mean in personality! The food scene is assorted, although there are a few staples. Dungeness crab is my favourite city main, especially from Harborview Restaurant & Bar or Thanh Long Restaurant. Sourdough bread is another and has been since the gold rush. Stop by Tartine or The Mill bakeries for some of the best! Chinatown San Francisco is notorious for having some incredible spots like China Live,  Z & Y Restaurant or the unassuming Dim Sum Bistro.

For more flavours around the city, try One65 for French cuisine, Aziza for Moroccan or Cala for delicious Mexican. Finally, check out the SF Ferry Building’s extensive market place and food court for everything from handmade teas to artesian cheese boards.

Colourful cocktails to match colourful vibes!

Ready for a drink? The Interval at Long Now is part café, part bar and part museum, an entertainment trifecta! For a menu with over 100 different types of champagne check out The Riddler. Some of my favourite creative cocktail bars include True Laurel, 15 Romolo and The Beehive. Would a trip to the Pacific Bay Area be complete with out a trip to a tiki bar? Last Rites, Bamboo Hut and Pagan Idol are bound to be a colourful time!

San Francisco is one of the quirkiest cities in the country. It’s beautiful geography and flashy ways are the perfect recipe for a whimsical journey!

 

Love,

Isabella

Isabella’s Checklist

What to see: Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz (https://www.sftravel.com/)

Where to stay: Hotel Zeohyr, Hotel Zeppelin, Ritz Carlton (https://www.hotelzephyrsf.com/, https://www.viceroyhotelsandresorts.com/zeppelin, https://www.ritzcarlton.com/en/hotels/california/san-francisco)

Where to party: The Interval at Long Now, True Laurel, Bamboo Hut  (https://theinterval.org/, http://truelaurelsf.com/, https://www.bamboohutsf.com/)

Where to eat: Harborview Restaurant & Bar, One65, Cala  (https://www.harborviewsf.com/, https://one65sf.com/message/, https://www.calarestaurant.com/)

What to buy: Shop around the lovely Union Square

Let’s go to San Francisco!
Isabella’s Checklist

What to see: Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz (https://www.sftravel.com/)

Where to stay: Hotel Zeohyr, Hotel Zeppelin, Ritz Carlton (https://www.hotelzephyrsf.com/, https://www.viceroyhotelsandresorts.com/zeppelin, https://www.ritzcarlton.com/en/hotels/california/san-francisco)

Where to party: The Interval at Long Now, True Laurel, Bamboo Hut  (https://theinterval.org/, http://truelaurelsf.com/, https://www.bamboohutsf.com/)

Where to eat: Harborview Restaurant & Bar, One65, Cala  (https://www.harborviewsf.com/, https://one65sf.com/message/, https://www.calarestaurant.com/)

What to buy: Shop around the lovely Union Square

Let’s go to San Francisco!

0 Comments to “Fascinating San Francisco”

  1. Really enjoyed your blog. Such an interesting city, full of culture – and the food looks amazing

    Chelé at 4:18 pm

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