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Trip List by northbeachbum

Cable Car To Heaven

18 Jun 2006  Born across the street from the Golden Gate Park.
4.0 of 5 bubbles based on 11 votes

Galavanting through San Francisco on a 3-day freebie pass. All you need: sturdy shoes, a daypack, and lots of energy.

  • Explore locations featured in this Trip List: San Francisco, Marin County
  • Category: Walking tour
  • Traveler type: Culture, Sightseeing, Shopping, Active/Outdoors, Beachgoers
  • Appeals to: Couples/romantics, Honeymooners, Singles, Families with teenagers, Seniors, Budget travellers , Active/adventure, Tourists
  • Seasons: Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall
  • 1. Union Square
    Union Square, San Francisco, California

    Get a copy of the Golden Gate Trailblazer guidebook and turn to the downtown SF section. Start here at San Francisco's shopping center, home of all the biggie flagship stores. You will be tempted to start using your credit card for some shopping. Use it for an espresso on the square's terrace and do some people and pigeon watching. The day is young. For a birdseye view of the square, enter the St. Francis Hotel and wind through the lobby heading for the exterior glass elevator. Cool view.

  • 2. Market Street
    Market Street, San Francisco, California

    You could call this the historic Main Street of San Francisco. Again, a shopper's mecca but stow that card and hop on the Powell Street cable car. Long lines form in the afternoon, so get aboard early. Grab an outside seat and ride it all the way to Fisherman's Wharf.

  • 3. Pier 39
    Pier 39, San Francisco, California

    Ground zero on Fisherman's Wharf. A nice San Francisco sampler right on the water. You can opt for a ferry tour of the bay (they sail right outside the gate), sit and watch the entertainment, be a real touristo. Tours of Alcatraz start here, but you have to have a reservation. My suggestion is to take their night tour.

  • 4. Alcatraz
    Alcatraz Island, San Francisco, California

    This tour will eat up half a day and is run by the State Park system. The island is in the middle of the bay and the views are superb. See what cell life was like in the thirties. Go online to reserve ahead.

  • 5. Presidio of San Francisco
    San Francisco, California

    A walking trail extends from Aquatic Park on Fisherman's Wharf to the Golden Gate Bridge. Walking across the bridge on a foggy day is a real thrill and costs nothing. A feast for your point-and-shoot. After your crossing, stop in at the Warming Hut at Chrissy Field for some refreshment. Their sandwiches are delicious. The one place to buy quality SF souvenirs, t-shirts and books.

  • 6. Golden Gate National Recreation Area
    Golden Gate National Recreation Area, Marin County, California

    Pick up the trail under the Golden Gate Bridge and follow it to Baker Beach where the sand sparkles with gold mica and your point and shoot will get a work out. On most days the waves are big boomers. Bring a picnic lunch, tables are tucked away in the cypress trees of sit out on the beautiful beach with a fine view of the GGBridge.

  • 7. California Palace of the Legion of Honor
    Legion of Honor, San Francisco, California

    Here you'll get a feeling of old California. The Thinker statue is visible outside the museum entrance and the coastline views and trails worth the trek.

  • 8. Golden Gate Park
    Golden Gate Park, San Francisco, California

    Start at Ocean Beach and walk up the gut. Look for the windmill, it is on the main drive. It will take all day (bike recommended-you can rent them on the Haight Street side). Stop at Stow Lake, feed the ducks your leftover bread, head over to the DeYoung Museum tower for a spectac view of The City, and last but not least, the Conservatory of Flowers is worth the price of admission. You will need a map of the park to find the Playground Merry-Go-Round and Arboretum. The Japanese Tea Garden has an inexpensive terrace to contemplate the cherry blossoms and rejuvenate with Jasmine Tea and plate of sesame and fortune cookies.

  • 9. Haight Street
    Haight Street, San Francisco, California

    Peace and Love and all that stuff that was the hippie era took place here. This walk is interesting and somewhat untouristy, a bonafide San Francisco neighborhood with outstanding record store and cheap cafes.

  • 10. Shimo (Clement Street)
    Shimo, San Francisco, California

    If there's one restaurant to recommend on your walking tour. This is it. The entire Clement Street is walk through San Francisco's most authentic ethnic neighborhood. Dim Sum anyone?

  • 11. Pacific Heights
    Pacific Heights, San Francisco, California

    Hopefully you have a San Francisco city map. Find Sacramento Street. Walk it for a nice sampling of old mansions and upper class San Francisco boutiques. Running parallel is California Street. If you walk down to Van Ness you can hop the cable car to Market Street. You will pass San Francisco's most expensive hotels and get a better understanding of the words "steep" and "clang".

  • 12. San Francisco Museum of Modern Art
    San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA), San Francisco, California

    The best museum in San Francisco and if you're going to spend some money, it is worth the price of admission. Docent tours are worth taking. Building exterior and interior an architectural gem. The gift shop is extrordinay and so is the cafe. Outside table mandatory. Across the street are the Yerba Buena Gardens, worth a walk through.

  • 13. San Francisco
    San Francisco, California

    End you tour at the foot of Market Street at the San Francisco Ferry Plaza. A Saturday Farmer's Market featuring all local delicacies, shops in the old terminal and ferrries to Sausalito and Larkspur (you'll see San Quentin before you dock). Walking through the city of Sausalito can consume a whole wonderful day.

  • 14. Golden Gate Bridge
    Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco, California

    Park near the toll plaza. The walk across will take at least an hour and be prepared for wind. You can also walk under the bridge and continue on hiking trails that take you past WWII bunkers and outstanding views of the bridge from outside the bay.