There are a ton of things that San Francisco is famous for – cable cars, the Painted Ladies Houses from Full House, Lombard Street, Golden Gate Bridge, Golden Gate Bridge, Chrissy Fields, Alcatraz – just to name a few.
I’m going to be honest and say that I only managed to do 1 of those things that I named above. My flight from the East Coast landed in SFO at 10:00am. After dropping off my bags at my hotel (Shout-out to the San Francisco Marriott Marquis!), I walked over to Powell Street to take a look at the cable cars. The line was 45 minutes deep, so I opted to take a Lyft down to Fisherman’s Wharf.
Fisherman’s Wharf is one of SF’s busiest tourist areas. There are souvenir shops and stalls selling crab and clam chowder. It also offers some of the best views of the bay and Alcatraz. I actually found a really, really good souvenir store called Safe Harbor, which I picked up some really cute souvenirs.
Before my trip to SF, everyone told me I had to go get some sourdough from Boudin. I put it on the list and made plans to visit on my first day in the city since I was going to Fisherman’s Wharf.
I had their clam chowder in a sourdough bread bowl. The bread really was the star of the show. The sourdough was soft and moist but still had a lot of structural integrity. The soup was really good was well, but it really was just a topping for the bread.
After lunch, I headed over to Pier 39. Pier 39 is very touristy. But it is one of the most visited destinations in San Francisco. It has two levels of dining, shops, and attractions. It also offers an incredible view of the bay – if it isn’t foggy, you can see the Golden Gate and Bay Bridges as well as Alcatraz Island!
Of course, the highlight, are the sea lions that sunbathe there every day. If you’re not sure where it is, just follow the huge crowd that’s perched on a corner of the pier. Plus the sounds will help guide you. They’re super cute and don’t really mind that their picture is being taken.
If you’re in town on a Thursday, the California Academy of Sciences holds Nightlife, a 21+ event where they open the aquarium, planetarium, and natural history museum up again from 6pm – 10pm. They offer a variety of adult beverages and keep the food venues open.
It was pretty neat to see all the exhibits without any kiddies running around. It really is different visiting an aquarium or museum without kids! They had a live music event during the night we were visiting, so tickets ended up being about $22 per person. Normally, I think if there aren’t any special events, tickets are $15 per person.
If you’re in SF in August, be very prepared that you’ll never get to see the Golden Gate Bridge. We tried 3 times – and each time it was too foggy to see more than 1/3 of the bridge.