Golden Gate N.R.A., San Francisco
City residents dig China Beach because it is the only beach in San Francisco that is considered safe for swimming. Bordered by high coastal bluffs, the fairly secluded beach has great views of the nearby Golden Gate Bridge. Visitors take a steep trail down to the beach, which also offers changing rooms, showers, a sundeck, and picnic facilities.
China Beach is part of the Golden Gate National Recreational Area and is situated in the northern part of the city, making it perfect for those who want to escape the crowds at the more urban Ocean Beach. A lifeguard is on hand from April to October (located at Sea Cliff Avenue and El Camino del Mar).
There's a tiny beach, I think called China beach, we found when we were just driving around. It was a very peacefull rocky/sandy beach, great for relaxing. I wouldnt recomend swimming there, but just for a get away, it was nice. It had a wonderfull veiw of the Golden Gate Bridge.
Point Bonita Lighthouse (www.lighthousegetaway.com/lights/calif1.html): Go over the Golden Gate Bridge direction Golden Gate National Recreation Area. From there it is down a one mile road, through a tunnel and across a suspension bridge. You have a spectacular view over the bay and the Pacific. If the weather is good enough and the sky is clear you'll be able to see the Golden Gate Bridge. For people who would like to spend the night in that fantastic area, try the YMCA on top of the cliffs.
Marin headlands. This is a an enormous state park located across the bay from SF. It has gorgeous views of SF and old forts and buildings to explore. Great bike and hike trails, lots of flora and fauna. A good day out away from the city and a really short trip. This photo is a Blue Jay that I saw there.
Camera Obscura, antique camera, built in 1946 that provides a 360 degree live view of Ocean Beach and Seal Rocks. Admission is only $1.00. Located below the Cliff House Restaurant, 1090 Point Lobos Ave.
One place not to be miss, is the expenal colony of Alcatraz, at the Alcatraz Island. Famous residents were Al Capone, and many other bad guys from the roaring twenties era. It is easy to get there, just take a boat tour from a pier at Fishermen's Warf, they go every hour or so, and includes a tour of the famous jail.