Visitors enjoy yourselves for what the city offers for spectators to enjoy, but be vigilant the city is soft on crime, robbery is prevalent.
San Francisco by the Golden Gate
San Francisco has much to offer for residents, bay area visitors, tourists, and beyond. There is much to see, learn and enjoy, for this cultural, commercial, financial population density, in Northern California.
The city history was famous for the 1849 California Gold Rush, and traces to those early days of the explorers, which evolved into those young settlements, the canon still remains garding the Golden Gate for unwanted intrusions.
Famous for it’s restaurants, some of the best chef’s in the country call this home. With so much to do in this amazing city let us get started for places to go.
Visit The Golden Gate Bridge
The bridge which crosses the Golden Gate, carrying cars from San Francisco to Marin county is the most popular suspension bridge in the world.
Declared one of the modern wonders of the world. The bridge was opened in 1937 and at that time it was the longest suspension bridge ever created.
Made from the great gift of steel, with a total length of 1.7 miles it is the most photographed bridge anywhere is the world. There are six lanes of traffic on the bridge carrying millions of passengers every year.
Accommodations for Visitors
Parking is available for visitors car traffic. A visitors museum building contains information on the bridge, many interesting items to see. A short section of a main cable is on display there. Exposing a 36.5-inch-wide cross-section of the cable, containing 27,572 wires.
Accommodations for eating is provided.
Fog and The Bridge
The Golden Gate is notorious for fog. The fog comes in from the ocean laden with a small percent of corrosive salt, with coats the entire bridge. Great care is taken with painting the bridge, which goes on continuously. Even with this coat of protective paint the salt manages to do its dirty work, corrosion.
Since its opening in 1937 three quarters of the bridge has been replaced, an ongoing process. The Golden Gate Bridge is painted with its famous paint, the signature International Orange color.
Before the bridge was opened in 1937, access to the city or Marin county was by ferry. The ferry company was called Golden State Ferry Company, and was the largest operating anywhere. Take a tour of the Golden Gate Bridge from the Air by a Seaplane Tour.
Visitors to the Golden Gate Bridge a year is estimated to be ten million.
For facts on the Golden Gate Bridge go here.
Fisherman’s Wharf at the Waterfront
The most famous waterfront community is at Fisherman’s Wharf San Francisco. Here you can dine on some fantastic food and enjoy some great company while eating.
There are outdoor stands selling fresh Dungeness crab or various gourmet restaurants selling the freshest of fish from that days catch.
You can arrange to go on many different tours of the area including Segway, walking, boat and many more.
Golden Gate Park
Each year an estimated 13 million visitors visit Golden Gate Park, where you can explore one of San Francisco’s most amazing places.
The park spans 1,017 acres, which has many places with to explore or relax. You can witness the lakes, picnic areas, monuments, playgrounds and wonderful gardens.
Throughout the year there are a an extremely abundant of events and activities that take place in the park. Weddings or special event can take place in the beautiful gardens, and photographs can be taken to fill your albums.
Alcatraz Island, a Former Prison
It lies 1.5 miles off the shore of San Francisco. This tiny island was developed as a military fortification, a military prison as well as a federal prison. The most famous being the federal prison. This was between 1933 and 1963.
The thinking behind this as a federal prison was that the prisoners who caused continual trouble at other prisons would be locked up here and escape was not possible.
Many infamous prisoners have stayed here including Al Capone, and Robert Franklin Stroud. The island now has be come a tourist attraction and many people flock here each year to explore the depths of the prison.
Union Square a most visited neighborhood in San Francisco. Here you can visit a large collection of high end retail outlets, fancy hotels, cafes, art galleries , enjoy the very active nightlife.
With many live events to attend, and there is always something happening to keep you entertained.
Chinatown, with its Chinese Culture
Most major cities have a Chinatown, San Francisco has four and the one on Grant Avenue is the biggest Chinatown outside of China. as well as being the oldest in North America. The town is so big that is encompasses two hospitals, various parks and draws an overwhelming amount of visitors each year.
If you are looking for authentic Chinese cuisine in San Francisco there is no point looking anywhere outside of the four Chinatowns, where you can find real traditional Chinese food.
If you happen to be in the city during the Autumn Moon Festival you can visit this Chinese festival for free.
Ride The San Francisco Cable Car System
The cable car system is pulled up the San Francisco hills by a cable, just under an open track that the conductor can attach to whenever the trolley is ready to ascend. It is the last manually operated system in the world today.
Today just three are left. Nearly all of the people that ride the cars today are tourists looking to try this historic system. The first of the cable cars was opened in 1873.
In 1892 the first electric streetcars can into existence, the decline of the manual Cable Car began.
The San Francisco Giants can be Watched in their New Stadium
The stadium is on the San Francisco Bay and every time the Giants step into the park the stadium and city unites. The current stadium was completed in April 2000 at a cost of $357 million dollars.
The San Francisco Giants were originally the New York Gotham’s before moving to San Francisco in 1958. They have won the World Series 8 times, the most recent being in 2014.
The Palace of Fine Arts
The Exploratorium is one of the most interactive places to take your children, the setup is so fun that you do not even realize you are learning whilst you are there.
There are six galleries, with their great hand painted pictures, notice the wonderful brush strokes that make the pictures come to life.
Visit A trip to The Presidio Of San Francisco
The Presidio of San Francisco is a former military base that now has become a park. The park is situated on the northern tip of the San Francisco Peninsular, next to the Golden Gate. It falls under the Golden Gate Recreation Area.
The ownership of the area initially was held by the Spanish, it then moved to the Mexicans before the United States took ownership in 1948.
There are many places in the park where you can stand and overlook the Golden Gate Bridge as well as the Pacific Ocean. The site is also a recognized California Historical Landmark.
Aquarium of the Bay
The Aquarium of the Bay is situated on the waterfront of San Francisco.
Here you can enjoy an unforgettable experience as you come face to face with the local marine life. The aquarium has a mission to protect the bay and the animals that live in the bay.
Inside you can look through glass into the water and come face to face with a leopard shark and note the peculiar jellyfish. The Aquarium of the Bay sustains 20,000 animals from the bay and surrounding areas.
The Famous Ghirardelli Square
The history of this square is one that started as a chocolate factory that was owned and established by Domenico Ghirardelli.
Ghirardelli was born in Italy in 1817; he worked as a young confectioner before leaving for Uruguay at the age of 20.
As time went by Ghirardelli became a coffee and chocolate merchant, eventually ending up in San Francisco where the chocolate factory was set up.
The square is now home to many upmarket shops, restaurants and hotels.
The Ferry Building Marketplace
Offering everything from freshly caught fish to artisan cheeses, the Ferry Building Marketplace is one of the city’s most famous landmarks. The marketplace is located within the Ferry Building that sits at the bottom of Market Street.
A mixture of shops large and small. You can eat at some of the city’s finest restaurants that house some of San Francisco’s best chefs.
The Ferry Building was home to the ferries that transverses the bay, caring cars from point to point before the bay bridges came into play.
The Twin Peaks in San Francisco are a world famous tourist attraction and offer spectacular views of the Bay Area. The Peaks were initially called “Los Pechos de la Choca” meaning Breasts of the Maiden. The two peaks are adjacent to each other and stand at 922 feet.
Animals and plants are in abundance as you make your way to the top you are sure to see plenty. There is a 64 acre park there, that gives you an idea of how San Francisco looked before the development we see today.
Explore Modern Art In The City
San Francisco Museum of Modern Art
The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art was the first museum in this part of the country to show only modern art. There are currently more than 29,000 pieces of work on display including paintings, sculptures, photographs and architecture.
The museum is more than 80 years old and was initially housed at the War Memorial Veterans Building before moving to the location that is stands in today.
Coit Tower and its Spectacular View
Coit Tower has been standing at the top of Telegraph Hill since 1933. At the top of the tower is a viewing deck that gives 360 degree views of the city and the surrounding bay. The tower was named after Lillie Hitchcock Coit, she was a little eccentric and very wealthy.
When she passed aways he left a substantial sum of money to the city and so this tower was built to honor her. You can go up the tower by elevator all year round and tickets can be bought from the nearby ticket shop.
Learn All About Asian Art
The Asian Art Museum in San Francisco has one of the largest and most comprehensive collections of art from Asia in the world today.
There are more than 18,000 pieces of art in the museum, including some pieces that are more than 6,000 years old.
The museum was founded when Avery Brundage donated a large sum of money to the city to found the museum. A millionaire and a collector of Asian art himself. The pieces of art focus on all major Asian countries, the museum also attracts many traveling exhibitions.
Wander Amongst The Redwood Trees
Muir Woods is a ways from the city, you have to travel to get there as its some distance from San Francisco.
It is an area of land covering 554 acres which forms part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Center. 240 acres of this park is full of redwood trees.
At one point there were approximately 2 million acres of redwood trees in California, so much of it is gone, but new little trees have been planted and when grown can be harvested.
There are many trails of varying difficulty to enjoy on a day out.
Visit The Oldest Japanese Tea Garden In The U.S
San Francisco’s Japanese Tea Garden is the oldest public Japanese garden in the country. The garden was created for an exhibition in 1894, when the exhibition closed a gentleman’s agreement was reached and the garden remained. As time went by the garden expanded to the size it is today, approximately 5 acres.
Today the gardens are hugely popular with tourists who come to see the pagodas, stepping stones, arched bridges and native Japanese plants. There is also a koi pond and Zen garden. If you are hungry or thirsty on your visit you can stop for some traditional Japanese refreshments.
Ferry To Angel Island
Angel Island is the second largest island in the bay. There is a small population of about 60 people that live permanently on the island. You can travel here by ferry from San Francisco.
There are some fantastic cafes and bars serving up delicious food. The views of the Bay from the island are spectacular and worth the cost of the ferry alone.
There are often events on the island that feature live music, so it is worth checking out what is happening in advance to make sure you go on a day when lots is happening. Supposedly there are deer on the island.
Take A Trip Across the Bay Bridge
The Bay Bridge is officially known as the San Francisco -Oakland Bay Bridge. The bridge connects San Francisco Bay and Oakland,
240,000 vehicles a day pass over the bridge on one of the ten lanes designated for vehicles. There is also a cycle and pedestrian lane.
The old part of the bridge from Oakland to Yerba Buena Island initially carried trains on the lower deck but once the Key System Transit line was closed it was converted to vehicles. The old bridge with its upper deck carried vehicles. One way and the lower carried them the other way
The old bridge has been demolished, and replaced with a new one, with only one deck. Its huge, with lanes going in opposite ways for vehicle travel.
Take A Stroll Along Ocean Beach
Ocean Beach is a beautiful quiet beach with gorgeous white sand and very few tourists. The beach stretches out in front of you for 3.5 miles and is very quiet, quite often it can just be you, the birds and the ocean waves. The water is good for surfing but only if you are experienced as it can become very choppy.
The beach is part of the Golden Gate National Park, because of this you will get no high rises or ugly buildings to look at whilst you explore. Instead you will see beautiful natural views and also the Golden Gate Bridge.
Find Culture At Yerba Buena Gardens
Yerba Buena Gardens
At The Heart of the downtown cultural district is Yerba Buena Gardens. Here you can find restaurants, cafes, museums and theaters. There is also a memorial to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. that is certainly worth taking the time to see.
There is always something happening and every year hundreds of free outdoor events are put on for the locals and visitors. You can go bowling, ice skating or take a ride on the historic carousel. The park has been voted among the top 30 urban parks in the country and once you arrive it is easy to see why.
Enjoy The Walt Disney Family Museum
Walt Disney Family Museum
The Walt Disney Family Museum is a must see for anyone who is a fan of their movies. Here you can learn about the life of Walt Disney. The museum covers an area of 40,000 square foot and features some of the historic items that brought Walt Disney’s imagination to life.
You can take a look at some of the earliest drawings as well as a 12 foot replica of Disneyland. There are 248 awards in the museum which were won by Disney during his glittering career. Part of the museum is a Fantasia inspired theater which shows Disney classics daily.
Where to stay:
San Francisco has many Hotels. Where to stay should be planned in advanced. If not planned in advanced, Hotel Brochures are available in the city, denoting their locations.