05.18.14 – San Francisco

Thinking about splurging on a trip, but don’t want to deal with the hassles of a passport or customs?

San Francisco may be the perfect place for you!

The city has something for everyone – Alcatraz tours for the history buff, Golden Gate bike rentals for those looking to really break a sweat, building and city tours for someone who appreciates beautiful architecture, endless shopping downtown, and incredibly delicious food for the self-proclaimed (and closet) foodie.  The environmentalist will be happy to hardly see a plastic bag in sight, and thrilled when they see that even the buses are electric.

Get ready to walk (a LOT), and pad your budget by about 30% (their sales tax is 12%+).  If you live in a different time zone, prepare yourself to push through a *little* sleepiness around 8 or 9pm PST, and remember that you’re not in San Francisco ALL of the time.  😉

Public transportation is available (the BART runs underground, MUNI is the bus system, and cable cars, taxis, and bikes are all various ways to get around).  San Francisco is a little spread out (there is a LOT to do), but if you plan your trip carefully, you can maximize your time spent in different parts of the city each day.

Here are some shots from my recent 3-day May trip.  Thinking of traveling to California?  Let me help!  Allison at pvactravel.com

 

Too excited about our trip, I forgot to take a photo of the room.  So, here's the hotel website version of it.  We stayed at The Westin St. Francis off Union Square.  Central to a lot we ended up doing!

Too excited about our trip, I forgot to take a photo of the room. So, here’s the hotel website version of it. We stayed at The Westin St. Francis off Union Square. Central to a lot we ended up doing!

The view from our room wasn't half-bad!  Looking down on Union Square.  Don't be surprised to come across random unexpected festivals, demonstrations, or interesting people during your stay.

The view from our room wasn’t half-bad! Looking down on Union Square. Don’t be surprised to come across random unexpected festivals, demonstrations, or interesting people during your stay.

Be sure to ride The Westin's glass elevators to get amazing views of the city!

Be sure to ride The Westin’s glass elevators to get amazing views of the city!

Grab a cable car at lots of stops throughout the city!  Need some help planning your trip to San Fran?  I can help tell you where to pick up the cable car, and what time is best.  ;)

Grab a cable car at lots of stops throughout the city! Need some help planning your trip to San Fran? I can help tell you where to pick up the cable car, and what time is best. 😉

Flower vendors make the streets smell like lilies and roses in May.

Flower vendors make the streets smell like lilies and roses in May.

 

What's San Fran without Ghirardelli?

What’s San Fran without Ghirardelli?

 

Recognize the Chinatown Gate from any movies?

Recognize the Chinatown Gate from any movies?

 

Visit Alcatraz by one of the official ferries.  This is definitely a can't-miss stop in San Fran.

Visit Alcatraz by one of the official ferries. This is definitely a can’t-miss stop in San Fran.

 

A cool shot of the prison library.

A cool shot of the prison library.

 

Take a drive (or walk) down Lombard Street

Take a drive (or walk) down Lombard Street

 

Check out Fisherman's Wharf for fresh seafood, or try Boudin's famous sourdough bread.

Check out Fisherman’s Wharf for fresh seafood, or try Boudin’s famous sourdough bread.

 

Lucas Film is in The Presidio - and you, too, can have your picture taken with Yoda.  ;)

Lucas Film is in San Fran.  Do you know where you can have your picture taken with Yoda?  🙂

 

Stop by Golden Gate - or walk the length and then buy a t-shirt saying you trekked it!

Stop by Golden Gate – or walk the length and then buy a t-shirt saying you trekked it!

 

Try world famous pancakes or cinnamon sourdough French toast at Sears Fine Foods... and play their slot machine afterwards!

Try world famous pancakes or cinnamon sourdough French toast at Sears Fine Foods… and play their slot machine afterwards!

 

Outside the Ferry Marketplace, where you can buy fresh veggies, grass-fed beef, local honey and mushrooms, all natural cheeses and ice cream... if you leave here hungry, you're not human.

Outside the Ferry Marketplace, where you can buy fresh veggies, grass-fed beef, local honey and mushrooms, all natural cheeses and ice cream… if you leave here hungry, you’re not human.

 

The Ferry Marketplace reminded me of a cross between Charleston's Market and New Orleans' French Market

The Ferry Marketplace reminded me of a cross between Charleston’s Market and New Orleans’ French Market.  Pick a restaurant, grab a chair on the water side, and overlook the ships and the Bay Bridge down the way.

 

Baseball fan?  If it's during the season, catch a game!  Be sure to buy tickets in advance... most Giants games are sold out games.  With this view, how could you blame the fans?  (oh, yeah, and their home team isn't too shabby, either)

Baseball fan? If it’s during the season, catch a game! Be sure to buy tickets in advance… most Giants games are sold out games. With this view, how could you blame the fans? (oh, yeah, and their home team isn’t too shabby, either)

 

 

 

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