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Top Tours

 
San Francisco Sunset Champagne Seaplane Tour
"Your seaplane tour takes off from Sausalito a waterfront town just 4 miles (6.4 km) north of the Golden Gate Bridge. While you sip a glass of Mumm Napa a California sparkling wine made in the traditional French method enjoy a gorgeous leisurely flight over San Francisco Bay before the sun sets. Relax during this magical time when the city and water are beautifully illuminated by the indirect light of the sun.Head out to the open Pacific Ocean and then south to the Golden Gate soaring over the iconic red towers as you make your way toward downtown San Francisco. Fly past Fisherman’s Wharf Pier 39 and the skyscrapers of the Financial District
From $239.00
 
San Francisco Combo: Ferry Building Food Tour and Alcatraz
"Meet your personal epicurean concierge (aka guide) in front of the historic Ferry Building Marketplace. It's a San Francisco landmark with its iconic 245-foot (75-m) clock tower. Built in the late 1800s the ferry terminal was renovated in 2003 transforming the concourse into the foodie haven that it is today. Local food purveyors and artisans peddle their wares inside and outside the building — one-stop shopping for anyone looking to experience a taste of San Francisco.Learn more about Boccalone's house-cured fennel salame and freshly made mortadella Acme Bread's fresh loaves and Miette Patisserie's delicate French macarons. Want more? Indulge in a cup of chili from the American Eatery and satisfy your sweet tooth with handmade chocolates from Recchiuti. If you’re visiting during one of the weekly farmers’ markets don’t be surprised if your guide points out some of the city’s revered chefs shopping for fresh produce to include on their menus.After you satiate your appetite
From $130.00
 
San Francisco Love Tour
"San Francisco Sightseeing Tours aims to provide an enthusiastic and authentic way to get-to-know San Francisco. Hitch a ride for an experience that mixes both our love for modern day living and our memories of San Francisco in days gone by. Our 1970’s Vo complete with neon blue seats beaded curtains and shag carpets foster a Hippie vibe that celebrates Peace Love Freedom & Adventure. You will see breath-taking marvels such as the Golden Gate Bridge Lombard Street China Town The Castro and so much more.Travel down unique streets where other busses are forbidden. Visit the homes of San Francisco’s counter-culture icons such as The Grateful Dead
From $48.00

S.F. Nicknames / Pride Tips (11)

Don't use the 'F' word!

San Francisco is a very proud city. Sometimes this pride borders on smugness. If there's one thing we San Franciscan's love to talk about, it's how great our city is (or was, if you're talking to a bitter oldtimer!). We're always willing to offer an opinion as to the best view, our favorite restaurant, directions (it's confusing even for locals!), and anything else about our lovely home town.

We only ask for one thing in return: never EVER refer to the city as "Frisco." If you want to instantly change a local's opinion of you from good to bad, try using the 'F' word! I don't know why this is the case - it just is. Don't do it!

Some hip-hop types try every so often to make "Frisco" an edgy, hip word. It just makes people hate them more.

San Francisco is universally referred to as "The City." If you say to anyone in Northern California that you're going to "The City," everyone knows you mean San Francisco. The term "SF" is acceptable, as is "San Fran," but they're rarely used. People from SF are called San Franciscans - or, rarely, "city-folk" - I'd like to see that one used more often!

A few more - Gough Street is pronounced 'Goff,' Geary is pronounced 'Geery,' Kearny is pronounced 'Kerny,' and Noe is pronounced 'No-ee.' Highways are referred to by just their number - as in "you take 280 South." Don't say "you take THE 280 South." Putting "the" in front of the number is the way SOUTHERN Californians say it - and, therefore, it's bad.

These gaffs are all excusable and trifling compared to the 'F' word, though.

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Karnubawax
Apr 13, 2008

The S.F. versus L.A. rivalry

I heard a comedienne once describe it thusly; "there's a huge rivalry between San Francisco and Los Angeles........ it's just that only San Franciscans know it exists!" I don't know if it's really essential to know this, but there is animosity between SF and LA, or, more accurately, Northern and Southern California.

The most obvious manifestations of this are in baseball. Giants v. Dodgers games are always sold out, and chants like "Beat LA!' and "LA sucks" echo through the stands. I remember in the 80's when normally deserted Candlestck Park would get 50,000 fans on a chilly Wednesday night for SF/LA games. They could, and often did, get violent - fights in the stands were common. After one paticulaly nasty game (which I had the misfortune to attend), The Giants banned beer sales completely for nearly a year! The rivalry between Oakland and Anaheim is not quite as heated, but the 2002 world series between the Giants and the Angels fueled this rivalry anew!

Besides baseball, the rivalry exists in other sports as well - particularly college football. Cal vs. USC games are always intense no matter how poorly the teams are doing.

It would be one thing if this was only about sports, but there are very real and pragmatic reasons as to why this rivalry exists. Water being a main reason. Water is scarce in this booming area, and more than a few NorCal lakes have been drained dry in an effort to supply the Southland with water. The drought of the 70's saw many NorCal areas close to water rationing, while the TV showed Southlanders wasting it with impunity.

This goes back to the very beginnings of the state. San Francisco sees it self - quite rightly ;) - as the real California, with the gold mining areas of the Sierras as its protectorate. When Los Angeles surpassed San Francisco in population in the 1910's, the politicians had to secure water rights for their new booming area. Much of that water would end up coming from Northern California. The environmental damage caused by this is still very evident today; the windswept, desolate Owens Valley was drained by SoCal, and Mono Lake very nearly met the same fate. The California "Water Wars" have been the subject of many books and TV specials, and no doubt will continue to be, as the population of California continues to boom - and the political and business interests of the state continue to do nothing but make the problem worse.

Northerners tend to look at Angelinos as wasteful, shallow, a-moral "use and be used" types. Southerners look at Northerners as elitist, stuck-up "player hating" hicks. Whatever. I only include this to point out that there are really 2 Californias - and it goes way beyond Bonds v Gagne.

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Karnubawax
Apr 13, 2008

"Don't call it Frisco!"

The great Chronicle gossip columnist, Herb Caen wrote a book in 1953 with this title, yet even Caen lamented that the nickname had a long tradition among gritty longshoreman and sailors. One problem with the Frisco nickname is that it was used by Frank Sinatra in his song, "Hello, Frisco, Hello". San Franciscans percieved Sinatra's Palm Springs and Las Vegas roots as mob inspired, while contemporary Tony Bennett's signature song "I Left My Heart in San Francisco" was viewed as more appropriate for the city.

A more serious problem is the false linguistic amalgamation from the longer name San Francisco. In general, San Francisco artist are inclined toward lengthier names, not shorter ones. Leave the bubble gum for impulsive LA, the thinking goes. The labyrinith of streets, painted ladies, and the mystical fog suggest a preoccupation with reflection, such as is found in longer names "The Grateful Dead", "The Jefferson Airplane", "Dan Hicks and His Hot Licks" --a sharp contrast with bland blond headed beach twank of the "The Beach Boys", for example, or other famous bands of southern California with more terse names--"The Doors" or the "The Byrds". The name Frisco implies the cool foggy climate of the city, but for those that live in Northern California, most also know that the city is actually warmer in winter than surrounding Bay Area and Central Valley cities, often as much as twenty degrees warmer on a still January winter night.

For those who prefer to remain in tune with the sophisticated side of San Francisco, simply refer to it as "the city" and everyone local will know where you are talking about. Folks from NY and London think this nickname is a joke. But, the City deserves this nickname for more than it's complex romance, the cable car transit, a good aged bottle of wine, and fine dining with a view of the waterfront. San Francisco was for more than a century the ONLY CITY in the western United States. San Francisco was an island of urban entertainment and culture. Closest big cities were St Louis, Chicago, and New Orleans, and it rivaled these in sophistication early on. Meanwhile LA, Portland, and Seattle were by contrast hard to locate on the map, mere pueblos lacking any of the sophistication that makes a city. Thus, "Frisco" is cheap street language more familiar among tatoo parlors and B-rated Hollywood movies, where a margarita is more likely to be consumed on impulse than a bottle of wine. "The City", in contrast is the off handed reference locals have used for nearly two centuries.

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atufft
Oct 20, 2014

SF Nicknames

When you refer to San Francisco as Frisco or San Fran, you're marking yourself as an outsider. No one here calls it that, and those abbreviations grate on our ears. We say San Francisco or The City.

And while we're on the subject, the name of our state is California. Absolutely no one calls it Cali, and Cal refers to the University of California at Berkeley.

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Rixie
Oct 23, 2008
 
 
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Just call it The City or San Francisco

Don't call it Frisco, San Fran or any other weird thing you've heard. People will point and roll their eyes.
Oakland, and eastern cities are called the East Bay. San Mateo and close cities are called the Peninsula. San Jose and close cities are the SIlicon Valley and Marin and close cities are North Bay. There is no west bay, as San Francisco extends to the westernmost point.

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jzeidman
Dec 24, 2002

Please don't call it Frisco

The saying goes that, "Only thugs and bikers call it "Frisco." Whatever the case may be, most native San Franciscans find this nickname very degrading. Thus, when someone refers to the city as "Frisco," people immediately know that person is a tourist. Please just call it San Francisco or the City and you'll save yourself a lot of trouble!

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USCgirlie
Apr 08, 2006

Don't Call it Frisco!

The people of San Francisco are a very proud bunch to the point that some may think them snotty. I don't think that myself but rather that the natives are proud of the rich heritage of the area, its history, beauty, and diversity. That said they rather don't like it when people refer to their home in the abbreviated "Frisco." It is seen as a great slight and cheapening of its reputation of one of the great cities of the world.

If you feel that San Francisco is mouthful, it is acceptable to refer to it as "The City."

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Hopkid
Aug 02, 2008

Every San Franciscan is very...

Every San Franciscan is very proud of his beautiful city. Don't ever criticise it - if you can find something to criticise it about.
The city has an air of small town, although the Greater SF is the 4th largest city in the US. People there enjoy hanging out at the many squares in town.

OrlandoBR
Sep 08, 2002

Top 5 San Francisco Writers

atufft's Profile Photo

atufft

"Bagdad by the Bay"
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Karnubawax's Profile Photo

Karnubawax

"San Francisco - My Favorie City - By Default"
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Ewingjr98's Profile Photo

Ewingjr98

"San Francisco - "It's a free-for-all up there!""
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davequ

"SFO ... a declassé love letter to the CITY"
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Geisha_Girl

"San Francisco: Why this heart never leaves"
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1) calling san francisco 'san...

1) calling san francisco 'san fran' is the way tourists refer to this city; locals will know you're one right away. People from outside of san francisco call sf 'the city.' those who live right in the city call it 'San Francisco' or 'SF'
2) tax is a pain in the ass, it is 8.5%

crackerjack8
Aug 25, 2002

This is indeed one of the most...

This is indeed one of the most beautiful cities in the world and my own personal favorite. I have yet to meet someone who, after having returned from San Francisco, tell me they don't like the city. Never. You'll know what I mean when you come here. :-))

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Krystynn
Aug 24, 2002

Don't call San Francisco...

Don't call San Francisco 'Frisco'; at least when accompanied by a San Franciscan (not 'Friscoan'). It's insulting to them.

KaljaMaha
Aug 24, 2002

Things to Do Near San Francisco

Things to Do

Barbary Coast Trail

The Barbary Coast Trail is a walking 3.8 mile trail using 170 bronze medallions and arrows embedded into the sidewalks connecting 20 historic sites. The southern end of the Barbary Coast Trail begins...
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Things to Do

Fort Mason

Many people pass by the low water landscaped west side of the Fort Mason grounds, where there is also a wonderful expanse of lawn and great view of the Golden Gate Bridge. Here there are two (at...
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Crissy Field

The Former Airfield of the Presidio is now a mixed use area for the public now, Crissy Field is anchored by Marina Green on the east side, and Fort Point on the West. The park is home to a multitude...
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Ripley's Believe it or Not!

I was skeptical. Not much of an indoor explorer. But, I truly wanted to say that I had been to Ripley's in San Fran so we got the ticket and went for an adventure. I was not disappointed. It is one...
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49 Mile Drive

In 1938, The San Francisco Downtown Association created the 49 Mile Scenic Drive to highlight the city's beauty and to promote it as a business and tourist destination, so the route began at City...
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Market Street

What Street has given both history and Modernity in San Francisco than Market Street? Market Street is the back bone of San Francisco. To walk the length of the street is to travel throughout time and...
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