San Fran is a city of steep rolling hills surrounded on three sides by water. It is also the most diverse cities in the states- home to techies, liberals, hippies, artists, immigrants and the world famous chefs 🙂

San Fran is also famous for its notorious summer fog named ‘Karl‘. Whether one is beside it, above it or in the thick of it, it is a mystical and magical play of nature to behold. You can follow the Instagram and Twitter handler of the anonymous Karl to get the glimpse.

Bay Landing Hotel

On my tour of West coast, I got a day to spend in SFO and luckily we stayed at Bay landing Hotel. This place has a feel of old world charm with its décor. Besides, the views of airplane landing and taking off near the bay right from your window and amazingly tasty and varied breakfast, I must say this hotel is definitely a great value.

View of Bay from my window
Views from the walkway near the Hotel Parking lot

San Francisco’s attractions are spread out and aren’t very convenient to reach. So, here is my post on how to make the most of your time in San Francisco and how to see and explore the city.

Golden Gate Bridge

The first thing you want to do in San Francisco is see the Golden Gate Bridge! The Bridge has been the subject of countless photos by very photographer who has ever in San Fran. There are literally thousands of angles from which you can see it and take enormous amount of pictures like I did 😉 I have listed few places to get the best Golden Gate Bridge view:

Fort Baker

Fort Baker is my personal favorite spots in San Fran to get the Panoramic View of Golden Gate Bridge. It is located below the Vista Point on the northeast side of the bridge. Standing at the waters edge makes for a really unique view and the true scale of the Golden Gate Bridge unfolds before you.

Golden Gate bridge
Golden Gate bridge from Baker’s Beach
Golden Gate bridge, SFO
Golden Gate bridge, SFO
Fort Point National Historic Site

The views from Fort Point are really unique as you are almost directly under the Golden Gate Bridge when you visit the site.

Cargo ship passing by near the Golden Gate Bridge
Cargo ship passing by near the Golden Gate Bridge
Golden Gate Overlook

The Golden Gate Overlook view point is located on the southwest side of the bridge. It offers the reverse view of the bridge. To visit the overlook, you’ll need to park at the Langdon Court Parking lot. It may not be a really good pic but if you take a closer look at it, you can spot the tiny vehicles running over the bridge.

Golden Gate Overlook
Walk Across the Bridge

Last but not the least, you can walk across the bridge if you want (recommended), this will give you a close-up look of a bridge and of course the Alcatraz Island.

Walk across the Golden Gate Bridge

Alcatraz Island

Alcatraz Island lies just 2.4 km from the shores of the city. It was once home to one of the most infamous prisons in the world- considered inescapable due to the treacherous waters surrounding it. It was shut down in the 1970s and has since become a national landmark people can explore.

You can take a guided tour of Alcatraz Island. You will have to take a ferry (15-minute ride) to reach the island and back (another 15 minutes), with a 1.50 to 2 hour guided tour at the island.

Alcatraz Island on left

Lombart Street

First thing you will notice while driving in San Fran is that it has crazy steep hills! The streets in San Fran basically go straight up. Yes, you heard me right. Walking was more like climbing!! One of the most fun things to do in the city is drive down the Lombard Street.

Lombart street
Lombart street with its crazy turns

Lombard Street was originally straight, but in an effort to keep the neighborhood safer and quieter, the curves were added to deter cars from running down the steep hill. Unfortunately, the plan seems to have backfired, as now there’s always a line of cars a mile long just to drive down this famous street!

Fisherman’s Wharf

Fisherman’s Wharf is a well-known neighborhood in San Francisco and quite popular with tourists. This touristy neighborhood is located along the waterfront area of San Francisco. It is filled with sea-food restaurants, cafes, and souvenir stores. This is a great place to spend a evening.

Fisherman Wharf (Image Source – Pixabay)


It is the oldest Chinatown in North America build in the 19th century and portrays the stories of Chinese immigrants to the country. The red lanterns hanging all over the neighborhood, along with the dragon gate will definitely take your heart away.

Everything here looks like you are in a different world altogether. It is worth taking a stroll here and enjoying the ambiance.

Chinatown (Image Source – Pixabay)

Alamo Square 

This square is famous for the row of pastel colored Victorian houses known as the Painted Ladies. In Addition, they are also known for appearing in the opening credits of Full House TV show. The view of the houses and the skyline in the background is a good spot to take photographs.

Alamo Square (Image source- Wikipedia)

Final Words

San Francisco is a stunning, creative, organic, serene and wild city. It may be small ( less than 50 square miles) compared to the enormous New York City (over 300 square miles), but it definitely packs with a numerous sightseeing vistas.  If this is going to be your first time in San Francisco, you’re in for a treat 😉

Don’t forget to let San Francisco charm you!!

Thanks so much for reading! Do let us know how do you like the post by commenting in the below section. Also, don’t forget to visit the blog on my entire West coast trip.

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