More like "Off the Beaten Time Schedule".
People think I am crazy to get up so early to go to work every day. The beautiful San Francisco sunrises are the reasons I haul my butt out of bed before dawn to take the 5:50 am ferry to work.
This picture shows the view from the Embarcadero toward the Bay Bridge and Oakland. Nothing is more energizing for me that to see this sight as I begin my work day.
The way down from Bernal Heights is half the fun. The top of the hill itself is pretty bare and tree-less. On the way down, you see a semi-hidden staircase winding straight down into an alcove of trees. You take the stairs and find yourself winding down a foresty staircase toward a residential area. Across the street another hidden staircase leads back down the foresty hill .. and into a -- slide! A metal children's slide built into the hill. Slide down the side of the hill and into a sandbox before descending down the stairs onto another residential street. Suddenly, you're in a quiet, clean, paved East-Coast-esque little neighborhood. Make a couple turns and a couple blocks away you find yourself back in the heart of the mission, 20 minutes and 2 worlds away.
Bernal Heights overlooks the Mission, but on a clear day you can see much much more than that. When we went it got really foggy as we went higher. This reduced the view but added a fabulous spooky feel. As you walk along the top, there's one place where you can look out and see several teirs of landscape below: the hill below rising one way, the mission curving down beyond that, the 280 tilted up, Twin Peaks rising and Market/SoMA falling away. It's not as breathtaking as, say, Coit Tower or what have you, but I loved how it invoked that M. C. Escher picture of the stairs to nowhere, especially with the fog.
On the east side of Grant Ave, near Telegraph Hill (between Pfeiffer and Chestnut), we found a staircase between two houses. All it said was "Dead End." Led to a public deck with an awesome view. This deck is not marked in any manner, and you won't find it unless you either explore or know.
When building The Bay Bridge, the rock cut out for tunnel construction created Treasure Island. Treasure Island is located halfway between Oakland and San Francisco and gives you lovely views of the city.
Once occupied by the US Navy and Coast Guard, they have since vacated, and there are no plans for the site yet. As you enter, you wil see the first airport in San Francisco.
Location: Just over the Bay Bridge, towards Oakland
Starting point: Internet Cafe 24 FPS at Geary #608 (cross street is Jones) it is only 3 blocks away from Union Square. Have a cappucino, use the internet for a bit and prepare yourself for a good hike up Jones.
Are ya ready? Now hike up Jones Street all the way up up up. Don't be a puss now, keep on walking.
Boom, you hit California and see Grace Cathedral! Nice... Ignore the cable car, you don't need it.
Don't forget to look down at your right and see some awesome views of Bay Bridge. Keep on hiking untill you hit Broadway... make a right (it's a dead end here) and see a great view. There are stairs that will take you down to Taylor Street. You can head South down Taylor Street and see some cute architcture, or you can continue East down Broadway end up in China Town.
The view of the city on twin peaks is definitely breathtaking. We arrived something like an hour before sunset. It is a very nice place to watch the sun set and take some pictures. The lighted street is Market Street and the bridge on the top is the Bay Bridge. Of course if you want to make this kind of pictures a tripod is mandatory.
Beware though that it can be quite windy and chilly out there. We had taken our coats with us, but I would have appreciated an additional sweater.
I talked about this a bit on my San Francisco page, but it's just so great, I had to mention it again! It's such a gorgeous ride, whether on bike, car, or motorcycle. Try it.. You'll love it.. Here's a map!
Warning: If you get carsick. Be prepared to stop from time to time.. My young nephews had to stop several times to keep themselves from being sick.
When I don't have lunch plans, I will take a break from work and just walk. It's tough to avoid hills in San Francisco, which means any walk is great aerobic exercise. Go on up the hills - you'll be rewarded with outstanding views.
This picture is a view from Nob Hill looking toward North Beach, an eclectic blend of many cultures. On the other side of the bay is Richmond, a city of substantial diversity.
Van Ness Avenue, the widest street in the City, is home to San Francisco's city government.
The gold-domed City Hall was modeled after St. Peter's Basilica in Rome. Across the street is the Performing Arts Center comprised of the newly renovated War Memorial Opera House, the Veterans Building, Herbst Theater and Louise M. Davies Symphony Hall.
Twin Peaks is a pair of hills offering the best views of San Francisco. Mount Davidson, at 940 feet, is the City's highest point and is located south of Twin Peaks.
Both are accessible by car and offer stunning views beyond the City to the Golden Gate and to the East Bay.
take a photo of San Francisco, especially at night. It is the first exit off of the Bay Bridge (highway 80) - there really is nothing to see in the island and it is a totally residential place, but the entrance has a great view of San Francisco. The only reason that this place is not one of the highest priced land around SF is the fact that it has been closed to the public for around 60 years - it was a Military Base, so all the houses on it are pretty crappy (sorry residents)So if you have any interest in photography, this is the place
to take a pic from!
The site below is commercial and I am not advertising it, but it has some nice pics to give you a better idea than my poor quality photo.
I could go on forever, but for now, one of the most goregous views of the SF skyline, pacific ocean and the GG bridge. Drive north on CA 101, pass the GG bridge. Take the second exit, Alexander. At the stop sign a left turn. It will swing you back the direction you orignally came from but under the freeway. Take the road lead up the mountainside. When you see the ocean, park your car. This road leads to numerous vista, parks, include Muir Woods. If you time this excursion right around sunset, its breathtaking.
Noe Valley - 24th and Church. Spectacular views and area full of restaurants. Housing cost is the highest in this area because the amazing views and parks. See what is means to 'live' in SF and why it really sucks to live in BFN(butt-f**king nowhere) like San Jose.
Driving south along the I-280 towards San Jose. As you leave SF, you will immediately see great mountain views! The highway features nice sweeping turns and you'll feel as if you're no longer in an urban area, even though you're heading towards Silicon Valley. San Jose is about 45 minutes away, depending on the traffic.(heading from SF to SJ via the 101 and you'll see miles upon miles of suburbia).