|Downtown view at night as seen from Twin Peaks|
We walked to the Embarcadero area and wandered into the Historic Ferry Building. It is a terminal for ferries that travel across the San Francisco Bay, a marketplace, and also has offices. On top of the building is a 245-foot tall clock tower, with four clock dials, each 22 feet in diameter, which can be seen from Market Street, a main thoroughfare of the city. I was surprised to see many high end "fancy food" stalls set up inside. Olive oils, cheeses, breads, pastries, coffees, and meats. We walked around a bit before seeing the San Francisco Fish Company. We ordered some food and took it outside to sit out on the marina/pier with a view of the Bay Bridge.
San Francisco is famous for its hills. There are more than 50 hills within city limits. Lombard Street is an east–west street in San Francisco. It is famous for having a steep, one-block section that consists of eight tight hairpin turns. The street was named after Lombard Street in Philadelphia by San Francisco surveyor Jasper O'Farrell. I can't imagine how people who live on this street manage to drive in and out each day.
San Francisco's Chinatown is the oldest and one of the largest in North America with the largest Chinese community outside Asia. Visitors can easily become immersed in a microcosmic Asian world, filled with herbal shops, temples, pagoda roofs and dragon parades. It was not the right time to eat when we visited, so we only walked around and explored. I liked all the street art.
The next morning we went to the Pier 39 arcade and ate breakfast at the Eagle Cafe overlooking the San Francisco Bay. We had a planned boat tour at 12 noon, which took us along the bay under the Golden Gate Bridge to Alcatraz and back.
|Close up view of the prison.|
|View of Alcatraz with the Golden Gate Bridge in the background.|
|Yummy Dungeness crab!|
The Ghirardelli Chocolate Company was incorporated in 1852, and is the second-oldest chocolate company in the United States, after Baker's Chocolate. After lunch, we walked around and came across the Ghirardelli Square. This landmark once featured over 40 specialty shops and restaurants. Some of the original shops and restaurants still occupy the square, while others are undergoing an extensive renovation. That night we went to the Noe Valley area and had dinner at Top Chef Master Chris Cosentino's restaurant, Incanto.
On our last day in San Francisco we planned to check out the SFMOMA and see my favorite artist, Cindy Sherman, whose exhibition was currently on display. It was much sunnier this morning, and Keith quickly looked up a place for breakfast. He found one walking distance from our hotel, so off we went. We found Brenda's French Soul Food with a large crowd of hipsters waiting outside and I immediately thought I was in an episode of Portlandia. After another full day of sight-seeing, we had our last dinner at Foreign Cinema.
I really enjoyed this trip to San Francisco. There are still so many other things to do and places to eat, so I am sure we will return. I'd love to rent a car and drive up the coast towards California's famous wine country. Have you visited San Francisco before? What are some of your favorites things to do and places to eat? Please share in the comments below!