The SF public library offers free walking tours all year long at all the major attractions and neighborhoods in the city. Check out http://www.sfcityguides.org/
and then click on schedule.
Tours are about 2 hours and absolutely free. They ask for a donation at the end of the tour. Guides are knowledgeable and personable. There are 6-10 tours offered daily throughout the city and several going on at the same time.
Loads of tour options to choose from.
Fondest memory: I've taken the Nob Hill tour and the Golden Gate Bridge tour.
Both were excellent.
This is a classic San Francisco photo op from Alamo Square, located on Hayes, just east of Divisadero. Alamo Square is a patch of green located at the top of a hill in the heart of the city.
The blend of Victorian houses with modern buildings is one of the striking things about this city.
Walking, walking and some more walking. We had our hiking boots on!
During our hikes through the city we saw a lot of great things, which were either very visual, or just hidden away.
Have a look at this Dungeon Crab, all the way hidden in under a tree. You will miss out on these thing whenever you're exploring the city by car, cable car or else...
As you can read on our "transportation" section we recommended that you must explore San Francisco by footh.
Why is it so great to walk around the city? Well ... have a look at the picture which belongs to this topic. The streets of San Francisco are beautiful. Everywhere you will find something new which will fascinate you. At least it did to us!
If you look carefully you'll see great houses like this... Enjoy!
Favorite thing: San Francisco is a dense metropolis condusive to pedestrians, and the traveller should take avantag of this fact. Walking around allows one to best experience the sights, smells, and people of San Francisco's unique streets and neighbourhoods. And while the city's steep hills may look formidable, trudging up them makes for good excersize- and yields spectacular views. Although below I swear religiously by the city's public transportation, it should only be used when one is tired of walking or needs to reach a location quickly. Don't worry about following predetermined routes to various locations and attractions- get lost. You'll find your way to a major thoroughfare or public transit line eventually. The experiences begat walking around San Francisco will far surpass any one has on a tour bus.
Ghirardelli Square is located at 900 North Point Street between Beach and Larkin Streets at the West end of Fisherman's Wharf, two blocks East of Van Ness Avenue and one block West of the Cable Car turnaround at Beach and Hyde Streets.
The big Ghirardelli sign is 25 feet tall and 125 feet wide.
Shopping, dining, art galleries, walking tours, events, are just some of the entertainment on offer here.
The walking tours are offered on weekends between July and September and are 20 minutes long. They are given by guides who are dressed in traditional Victorian costume to emphasise the history behind Ghirardelli Square.
This is an interesting and informative tour, if nothing else the tour is free plus you receive a free square of Ghirardelli chocolate!
Walk across the Golden Gate Bridge, and bring warm clothes (SF can get warm in the daytime, but its almost always chilly at night, and it rains fairly consistently from January - March).
Fondest memory: I used to go to the roof of my building and watch the sunset. The views in every direction from SF are breathtaking - and there's nothing quite like the Pacific Ocean! This was taken from my old roof (if you click on it, you can see the Golden Gate Bridge to the left side, and Mt. Tamalpais on the right side, in the distance). Mt. Tam (as the locals refer to it, perhaps because no one is quite sure how to pronounce 'Tamalpais'?!) is the largest mountain in the immediate area at 2571 feet, along with Mt. Diablo to the east (3849 feet, visible on a clear day from the taller hills around SF, as well as from the Golden Gate bridge). Mt. Tam is sometimes called the Sleeping Lady.
San Francisco is blessed with a great mixture of characters from fabulous cross-dressers to street preachers and those who experience better living through chemistry. You have to just hit the streets, provided you are street savvy enough to do so. This little square of California is truly alive and it just gives you the general feeling that something cool is happening. We met an old woman who told us of an affair she once had with Salvadore Dali. That just doesn't happen every day in other parts of America.
Fondest memory: My husband and I were in a Korean bar and some guy rushed in and offered to sell a wooden figurine of Confucius for $20. My husband, after a few Korean beers, said, " I'll give you $10." The guy agreed and took off quickly, leaving a gorgeous statue carved out of a single piece of hard wood. The bar-owner wrapped it in paper for us and we lugged it back to our friends' apartment. En route, we accidently got off in "The Tenderloin" and in spite of a few scarey moments, we everntually made it back with Confucious in hand. We still have him.
Walk along the water with your significant other and enjoy the crisp, salty air.
Fondest memory: I was on a business trip for a few weeks and my boyfriend came to visit me for a weekend. We walked around the Embarcadero and the Financial District. We got lost in Chinatown which was really interesting because it feels like you're really in another country!
Be prepared to do some walking if you REALLY want to get a feel for the city. Try not to drive; parking is sparse and lot fees are high. To get to those places that you can't walk to, take public transportation, which SF is well equipped with.
Fondest memory: Looking at all the different types of architecture; SF is full oif style and appeal.
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