San Francisco – California is one of those cities that’s a bit different from its host state. Perhaps one of the biggest differences is the attitude of the people. They just seem more down to earth than the other Californian cities, who by comparison are lean towards the self absorbed, materlistic clones with catalogue noses, tits, hair, lips and some pretty strange ideas.
Back to San Fran, it’s rich in architectural gems despite 80% of the city being destroyed in the earthquake of 1906. With a population of 7.5m it’s the liberalistic capital of the U.S. being a focus for the Summer of Love, the gay rights movement and epicenter for organic food. Known for cool summers, great food and a nearly as much fog as Britain it’s one of the top tourist cities on the planet and here’s our Top 10 things to do in San Francisco:
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- AlcatrazOnce a native American paradise now more famous for incarceration of criminals like Al Capone and The Birdman. Get there early and allow at least half a day.
- The Golden Gate BridgeCompleted in 1937 by some men with a big bucket of orange paint, it is one of the most famous suspension bridges in the world. It features art deco towers and is well worth a walk or leisurely bicycle ride.
- AT&T ParkHome of the San Francisco Giants baseball team. If you are visiting in the spring or summer catching a ball game (no pun intended) is a fantastic experience even if you’re not a sports fan.
- Ride the cable cars/trolleysI get confused with the difference between a trolley and a cable car (basically one is powered by overhead electrical lines the other is pulled along by underground cables and pullies). Either way they are a great way to see the city – check out the California Line. If you do and like seafood, we recommend a visit to the Swan Oyster Bar.
- SaulsalitoA pretty waterfront town a short ferry trip from San Francisco. Well worth heading to Napa Valley Burger Co. for a beer and a gourmet burger.
- Golden Gate ParkThis is a massive park close to the Golden Gate bridge, Lombard Street and Ghiridelli Square. There is a stack to see and do most notable is the Japanese Tea Gardens
- Legion of HonorBeautifully grand art museum featuring works from Europe and other parts of the world.
- Fishermans WharfIt’s a bit touristy but worth a peek and a spot of lunch.
- Ferry Plaza Farmers MarketsIf you are a bit of a foodie then this will be like an Aladdin’s cave with a spectacular selection of goodies from local growers, much of which is organic. Open Tuesday and Saturday just off Embarcadero.
- Lombard StreetReputedly the crookedest street in the world (as in bendy not dishonest). The series of hairpins and well tended flowerbeds is one of San Francisco’s iconic post card shots.
And the bonus destination because it’s so close to San Fran The Napa Valley.Pretty countryside, great wines – visit Beringer and stay in Yountville where you can sample of Thomas Keller’sfood.
So there you have it San Francisco, be sure to wear some flowers in your hair and avoid The Tenderloin – its dodgy and accounts for ¼ of the cities crime – believe me you don’t want to get lost there. San Francisco video