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97%
4.51 

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San Francisco:There is something for everyone
Jun 01, 2006 12:56 PM 2527 Views
(Updated Jun 01, 2006 03:03 PM)

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I visited San Francisco with my family in May 2003. We stayed with my aunt, who is a resident, for about a month in a place called San Ramon, about a one hour drive from SFO. Being a resident of SFO for several years, she showed us around the real SFO. Let me do the same for you.


Where to go:


There are many places that you can visit in this beautiful city…..


1) Golden Gate Bridge – This golden orange bridge is the landmark of this bay city. Its golden orange colour cannot be missed at any cost. You can either hire a bicycle or simply take a walk on the pathway alongside the bridge. Don’t forget to carry your camera! It is a beautiful spot for a photograph.


2) Golden Gate Park – Named after the Bridge, this park is one of the most versatile parks in the city. It is so large that one cannot cover the whole park in a single day without getting exhausted. This is where the famous 7 mile “BAY TO BREAKER” walk of San Francisco comes to an end.


3) The Crooked Street – This street has the distinction of being the most crooked street in the world. It is flagged by gorgeous quaint little houses all the way down. One can either drive down the street (which is so much fun!!) or simply use the stairs alongside the street.


4) Treasure Island – This island is just off Bay Bridge, the longest bridge in SFO and a master-piece of modern construction, isn’t exactly an island but sort of a dead end with an area that is restricted to the public. However, it offers an opportunity to take a nice picture with a backdrop of the city’s skyline.


5) Alcatraz Island – This is a historic prison turned tourist attraction just off the coast of SFO. There are various ferry services that one can take to reach the island. Once you are there, there is a guided tour that is included in the ferry charge. Don’t forget to carry something warm when you visit this island. It is always windy & cold.


6) Fisherman’s Wharf - This is where all the cruises start. There are a number of restaurants & shops at Ghirardelli Square that one can enjoy. If you are a non – vegetarian, don’t forget to try the famous “CLAM CHOWDER” that is a speciality of this area. You can also visit Pier 39, which is an open air market place sort of a thing.


7) Palace of Fine Arts – This is a beautiful piece of architecture (Roman I think!) Even if you are not interested in arts & science, you can skip the museum, but you must visit the surrounding area. There is this small lake which actually has bluish green water! The whole place has this unreal feel about it that one should see to experience.


8) SFO Cable Cars – You must take a ride on the famous SFO cable car. It is an amazing feeling zooming down the slopes of SFO! It is almost like a ride in a theme park!


9) Point Reyes – This is a beautiful spot around 2 hours from SFO. There is a light-house that overlooks the ocean below. It is used to guide ships passing the area which is generally foggy & misty. The light-house is on a rocky hill that juts out onto the ocean. You can descend a flight of steps to the light-house. Please be sure to check the weather forecast before you go there, as in case of bad weather the access to the light-house is disabled.


10) Marine County – If you like to hike this is the place for you. There are several trails that you can follow. We took the one that goes right up to the top of the mountain & then down to the ocean. But we had children with us, so we didn’t go all the way, as once you go down to the ocean, you have to head back all the way to where your car is parked. The trail ends in MUIRWOODS. This is a beautiful trail that passes through some of the tallest redwoods in the world! You can enjoy a warm cup of coffee in the cool air surrounded by woods.


Where to eat………


I was staying with my aunt so I can’t tell you much on this front……..


1) Fisherman’s Wharf – There are many restaurants that you can pick from. This place is mainly for seafood lovers.


2) Naan & Curry – This is a shady Moghlai restaurant in SFO city. It is shady to look at, but the food……yummmm!! Try their “Karela chicken & naans”


3) In & Out Burger – This is a burger chain, but it’s far from the regular fast food chains like Mc Donalds or Burger King. I am not a burger lover at all, but I went for a repeat order when I visited this place for the first time…….!


Where to shop…..


Now this is my favourite point……


1) JC Penny – Reasonable but trendy


2) Macy’s – Expensive but very in stuff


3) Walmart – Cheapest & good for casuals


4) Sears – Good for electronics


5) Target – An expensive version of Walmart


Tips : 1) Look out for newspaper ads……..there are lots of discount coupons & free gifts etc.


2) Look around before you make final purchases…….you just might find a better bargain


3) Always head straight for the discount racks first……I got a pair of formal trousers just for USD 6 & I’m still using the pair & it looks as good as new!


Hope this helps…..!!


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