(credit: Stuart Monk/Shutterstock)
Foodie or a thrill-seeker or romantic soul - the city and county of San Francisco tour has something for everybody. The sun, the warmth, the fog, the landscape and the architecture makes San Francisco a traveler's delight. Be it your first-time visit or a return to renew the memories, this city will never cease to amaze you.
City Buzz: Things to Remember
- This is a freewheeling city, so you can always take creative chances with the clothes you wear.
- Tipping is important as the city courteously serves you. 15-20% is the standard.
- Book your tickets in advance, as this city is a busy tourist spot.
- San Francisco literary invented sourdough bread and cookies and much more. So be ready to eat.
- For free unlimited transportation options on the rails to cable cars, you may consider buying a City Pass for up to 7 days.
- Though it is generally warm, remember to layer-up while dressing as coastal fog means it might get chilly even in summers.
- The downtown and the waterfront are flat and great to explore on foot.
- Buzzing with tourist, parking can get scarce and expensive.
- Hilly streets might get a little tricky to navigate.
- The area around Civic Centre called the ‘Tenderloin’ might get a bit dodgy, especially at night.
- Smoking in public places is not recommended.
- Alcatraz Island: The name is derived from the Spanish for pelican. With a spectacular view, originally a pelican nesting ground, this was the site of the first lighthouse in the western United States, which later became a federal prison, ‘the Rock’. The cell blocks along with an audio guide are open to visitors for creating the aura. The island sports five historic gardens, once tended by inmates and the wives of Alcatraz staffs. As one lands, the park representatives give an account of programs to be conducted on that day. It is free and worth a watch. A night tour, though can be eerie and spooky add on to the glory of visiting the island. Tip: Remember to pack food as there are no eateries in the island.
- PIER 39: A paradise for travellers is PIER 39, as it offers a feast for eyes as well as for the soul. Sea lions, the majestic view of the city and the bay along with California wines, this place is the soul of San Francisco.
- Golden Gate Bridge: One of the seven wonders of the modern world, this bridge spanning 1.7 miles from the San Francisco to the Marine Headlands has sidewalks for pedestrians as well as those in wheelchairs on bi-cycles.
(credit: Don DeBold)
- California Academy of Sciences: World class research and education facility with planetarium, aquarium (above), and museums - a must visit destination for fun lovers and history lovers alike.
In addition, San Francisco has dozens of museums and places of historical interest worth visiting. The Asian Art Museum, the Presidio, Golden Gate Park, and Yerba Buena Gardens are just a few places worth a special mention. Another site worth a mention is the mile-and-a-half-long trail along the coastline offering magnificent views of the peninsula shore.
Places to Eat
- Valencia Street houses amazing restaurants worth a try.
- Lunch at the Saturday farmers market is definitely worthwhile.
- Irish coffee, a combination of coffee and whisky and dark wooden bars at Buena Vista Café serves everything that San Franciscans love.
The city has plenty to choose from. Indulgence is the soul of the city of the county of San Francisco.