Best Time to Visit
I cannot stress this enough. Go to San Francisco in September or October even November. Autumn is really summer in San Francisco. If you go in May, June or July it is almost guaranteed to be cold and foggy. Yes there are some nice days in the summer but it's not the norm. I see so many tourists at Fisherman's Wharf wearing shorts and freezing in July. Plus without the fog you get spectacular view of the bay. What's the point of all those hills if you can't enjoy the view:)
Only in SF: strong legs required
Get yourself to the base of Telegraph Hill (try taking the F Market to Greenwich and the Embarcadero). Psyche yourself up for the climb by the tranquil gardens and waterfalls of Levis Plaza. Then head toward Telegraph Hill, via Filbert Street. Filbert dead-ends into a long stairway built into the side of a cliff. Take it.
If you are here in August, grab some wild blackberries draped over the railings. Mind the thorns.
Climbing this stairway, known as the Filbert steps, is one of the best ways to truly know San Francisco. As you ascend, the stairs become rickety and wooden, the gardens on either side amazingly lush, the cottages too quaint for words. The gardens were tended for years by Grace Marchant, a neighbor who had so much love to give the City and somewhere to give it. The homes on lanes like Napier and Darrell are among the oldest in the city.
Don't apologize for needing to break and catch you breath. The views behind you as you climb demand your attention.
At the very top of the hill take the trail toward Coit Tower and visit the Art Deco murals in the Tower lobby. The elevator ride to the top of the tower -- and the views from there -- are unforgettable.
NOW: you can head back down the way you came, or keep going, down the other side of Telegraph Hill. Filbert, Greenwich and Lombard Streets all lead into North Beach, the Italian neighborhood that served great coffee when Seattle was still pouring watered-down swill to Boeing employees. Try Caffe Trieste at 609 Vallejo at Grant, toward Downtown. There is no shame in sipping a latte. Sit for a while and listen: yes....that IS the beat of the Beatniks you hear.
All these streets lead to Columbus, which has buses, cabs and a cable car that can take you back downtown -- if you are too tired to walk.
I really liked to drive my car down the hills of San Francisco, it was such a thrill and scary sometimes you don't think the car will make it up! It's like in the movies, ... see picture on from page. The colorful architecture.
There are so many great things...
There are so many great things to do in SF, that it's hard choosing just one. One thing that springs to mind was driving across the Golden Gate bridge - it was totally exhilarating. San Francisco was a beautiful city. It had a strange feel of a small old town about it, what with it's beautiful wooden houses and lack of crowdedness. I'll keep forever the image of watching the fog roll across the bay.
promenade on the Embarcadero...
promenade on the Embarcadero under a starlit sky. Start at Fisherman's Wharf, past the seafood restaurants, ferry terminals & renovated piers, Pier 39 touristy venue, through the Harry Bridges palm tree lined Plaza, adjacent to the historic Ferry Building. Cross the street to the Justin Hermann Plaza, enter the award winning Hyatt Regency Embarcadero. Go for a quick elevator ride to the EQUINOX Restaurant,360 degree revolving rest./bar, & order your favorite drink, savoring the spectacular view of the world's favorite city in its night time splendor and romance. Running the Bay to Breakers Race, biggest street party in the City, held the second Sunday in May. It truly is a Roman spectacle---world-class runners, weekend warriors, crazy exhibitionists, moms with strollers, racewalkers extraordinaire(like the local Golden Gate RW club), serious college teams(crazy Aggies, yeah!), and reveling, costumed centipedes. The After Race Party is great: gourmet food, tasty libations, rockin' 'n a rollin' music, lots of laughs and cheers. ON THIS RACE COURSE WORLD RECORDS ARE BROKEN!!!