San Francisco's Haight-Ashbury neighborhood saw its height of popularity during the Summer of Love in , but is still a haven for alternative lifestyles. Expect lots of colorful houses, funky cafes and shops filled with tie-dye and other '60s throwbacks.
Within its 1, acres, San Francisco's famed park boasts everything from playgrounds and picnic groves to windmills and wild bison. That's to say nothing of the museums to explore, lakes to row and gardens to stroll. Golden Gate Park is a place where you could spend a couple of hours or the whole day or several!
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Haight-Ashbury Neighbourhoods. Golden Gate Park Parks. Cliff House Historic Sites. Pier 33 , San Francisco, CA Alcatraz Island. Ferry Building Marketplace. Union Square. Lombard Street. Pier Golden Gate Bridge. Coit Tower. Golden Gate Park. Cliff House. No trip to SF is complete without a cable car ride. Many things are a go here in this eclectic city. Don't be afraid to take any and all fashion risks! If you like to cycle, rent a bike and ride along the waterfront.
Just be careful of getting caught out going up those famous hills! Use the ferries! You can take them to the seaside towns of Sausalito or Tiburon, on a journey around the San Francisco Bay or to one of the islands , or over to the hip East Bay. A generally pedestrian and bike friendly place, be sure to share the road no matter what your mode of transportation. If you ride the cable car more than once, one-way tickets can add up.
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Instead, buy a 1- or 3-day passport, good for cable cars, buses, and the Embarcadero's vintage streetcars. Don't miss: The famous show will come to an end on Janaury 1, So make sure you pay them a visit before then. The academy offers a bit of everything for science-lovin' folks. Are you into ecology? Check out a four-story living rainforest that boasts butterflies, birds and a variety of tropical plants. Added to the San Francisco skyline in , this monumental love letter to the city remains an iconic welcome for travelers westbound across the Bay Bridge.
Rooftop bars with spectacular views of the San Francisco skyline. Given our cold, foggy nights, you may not expect to find outdoor rooftop bars in San Francisco. But roof decks there are and they're some of the best bars in the city, but not just for the unparalleled views. Across the bay in Oakland, Oeste cultivates a low-key, backyard vibe.
Seasonal blooms bring new life and color to this beautiful garden. This 75 year old gem sprawls across 55 acres in Golden Gate Park. While the native plants are plentiful, it's particularly known for its assortment of flora from around the world, including the forests of Central America, South America and Southeast Asia. The garden lays claim to the fourth most significant collection of magnolias in the world.
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Wander amid mosaic-paved trails and stone-laden paths and you'll find the ancient plant garden, a quiet redwood grove, the rhododendron garden and the dwarf conifer pond. Don't miss: One of the most popular areas is the Garden of Fragrance, where plaques encourage visitors to sniff sweet-smelling plants like cascading rosemary, rockrose, lemon verbena, chamomile and lavender.
Originally constructed of wood and burlap for the Panama-Pacific Exhibition, the structures were so beloved they were preserved and rebuilt in the s. Off the Grid events can be found all over the Bay Area but two locations, in particular, are not to be missed: The Presidio and Fort Mason. Sunday afternoons, the Presidio picnics again in a popular family- and dog-friendly event full of lawn games and activities for little ones. The oldest public Japanese gardens in the country at the heart of Golden Gate Park. The Japanese gardens burst with color and beauty in the early spring as maples flame and cherry blossoms bud.
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Walk stone paths through manicured terraces, through pagodas and over the impossibly-arched drum bridge or meditate on the zen garden before heading to the picturesque Tea House for a cuppa. They are still on the menu, tucked into cookie plates and bowls of arare. Colorful Victorian and Edwardian houses that feature three or more colors. A short boat ride out of San Francisco Bay affords you a front-row seat to one of the most spectacular wildlife migrations, when some 20, gray whales traveling south in January and back north in the early spring months.
From April through November, humpbacks and blue whales—the largest animals to have ever lived—frequent these anchovy-rich waters. The bacteria responsible for the sour flavor, lactobacilli sanfranciscensis, has since even been named after the city—and this is the place to sample sourdough, period.
That rarest of modern American metropolises, San Francisco is crisscrossed with dozens of hiking trails. Other favorites include the trails at Mt. It may be miles from the ocean, but sunny Mission Dolores Park might just be the most popular "beach" in San Francisco. Any weekend above 60 degrees and every green inch of the park is guaranteed to be packed with barbecues, somethings lounging on inflatable couches, hula-hoopers and tightrope walkers.
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Recently expanded restrooms and an updated playground for little ones make the convergence a little more comfortable. Founded in by brothers Tyler and Justin Catalana, the indie brewery now makes nearly 20 varieties of craft beer, from a smoked altbier with charred manzanita to a tropical fruit-infused IPA. There's still some debate as to who created the first Mission-style burrito. Taqueria La Cumbre is generally credited with the creation — they introduced the tortilla wrapped combination of beans, rice, meat and cheese in Their neighborhood competitor, El Faro Folsom St , also claims have to have originated the delicacy, serving it up to local firefighters as early as If you want the best, though, head to La Taqueria Mission St , which consistently appears on top restaurant lists year after year thanks to its behemoth, rice-free foil-wrapped bombs.
The recent rebrand to TreasureFest from Treasure Island Flea is a fitting upgrade for this kid- and dog-friendly outdoor extravaganza. Expect handcrafted jewelry and ceramics, vintage clothing, antique art and furnishings. The chance to dress up and belt out Hollywood hits en masse. Check the winery list at NapaValley. For a more affordable experience, skip the tasting lines and spend the afternoon driving along the winding, scenic side roads between Napa and St. Helena, stopping to stroll the main streets of each little town in between.
Tasting prices are similar to Napa, though it may be easier to find discounts. Again, a leisurely drive is not a bad alternative.
Here, you can see hundreds of years of human history at a glance, from prehistoric native peoples, to Russian colonists, to Anglo ranchers, to American military. About 60 miles up the coast from San Francisco lies Point Reyes National Seashore , a wild and remote-feeling stretch of coastal grassland, windswept beach, and stunted pine groves.