golden gates and cable cars

We finally made it in to San Francisco on Monday. Monday was beautiful. First we traveled down into Muir Woods to see the Redwoods and they are big! At first we didn't think they were even going to be as big as the piney woods in east Texas.

We were wrong. They are pretty amazing trees and it's understandable why people make trips out to see them and walk among them. We stopped up on Hawks Hill to look at the Golden Gate Bridge then drove down to Point Bonita and walked over to the light house out on the edge of the continent. This was by far the best view we will get the whole time we are here. It was breathtaking and amazing. Just as we were driving up the hill it started to get foggy. It was simply amazing. We were both in awe that something like this existed and it isn't all that talked about.

The Golden Gate is an amazing structure but the Lighthouse has the real views. You can look back at the bridge, or off into the ocean, or down at the waves crashing on the rocks. It almost feels like you're off in New Zealand. It was a surreal afternoon.

Then we took the scenic drive back, made a stop at Sausalito beach and headed through a tunnel to get back to the bridge. We made one more quick stop at Fort Point for one last look at the bridge. Then we made our way over to our hotel which is awesome and just west of Downtown and Union Square. We are staying at Hotel Vertigo (which was once the York Hotel, which was the building called the Empire Hotel in Alfred Hitchcock's Vertigo). It has recently been renovated (well halfway, they haven't finished yet). We both think it's got a lot of character. It's definitely a cool place to stay.

That night we made our way down into the mission, which turned out to be quite an experience. Lets just say its a very diversified and not the safest feeling place at night. First we headed over to Bi-Rite to try the famous Ice Cream. It was pretty good, actually really good. But, I have to give Austin credit on this one. We both felt like Amy's Ice Cream was a better experience and was more fun to go to. After that we walked over to Weird Fish were we waited for our table outside on a bench. Well we enjoyed the people watching until we were approached by a really, really drunk hobo who was preaching on love. At least that's what we think he was talking about but being Hispanic and drunk, he was a little hard to understand. Oh well, we got a good laugh out of it before dinner. Weird fish didn't really meet my expectations. It was a cool place but the food wasn't as great as I thought it was going to be. Oh well so far we were striking out in the SF food scene.

The next day we attempted to eat breakfast at Mamas in North Beach only to find a line at 9am on a Tuesday that was about 30 people. Instead we opted for Cafe Greco and had some good coffee/chai and a smoked salmon bagel. We did the normal peir 39/fishermans warf tourist thing and enjoyed the seals for a while.

These guys are loud and boisterous. They just lay around and yell, climb on top of each other, and fight. We could probably have stood there for a couple of hours watching these guys.
We checked out Ghirardelli square and had a cupcake at Kara's Cupcakes (Delicious -watch out Sugar Mama's). Then we headed to the Ferry Building (The last operating World Fair Building) and strolled through the farmers market. Snacked on fresh cherries and fruits. We had lunch there at the Slanted Door (also good, very fresh, but not up to expectations). Maybe our expectations were just too high. After visiting a few shops and riding a bus through Chinatown we ended up strolling around in some cool galleries and checking out Union Square. It was busy and full of tourists. I think it is one of those things you have to do while you are here but I don't really care for the hustle of it. For dinner we headed over to Little Star Pizza, who gets the Best Meal of San Francisco Award so far, and is way up there in our Top Pizza places ever list.

The pizza had this thick, crunchy cornmeal crust that held all the toppings in place. It was deep dish but you could it eat with your hands without it all falling off the crust. Perfect, was good. We then walked over to Alamo park to check out the Painted Ladies and the "Full House" houses (although it wasn't actually the house they lived in). We took a few fun pictures and enjoyed the scenery. Claire was enthralled with the detail of all the Victorians. This area is a stark contrast to the mission area.

More coming soon!


frogponder said...

My parents used to keep their sailboat at that wharf. Before the large mammals showed up! I love SF - my brother and his family live there now.

Anonymous said...

Ah, looks like such a fun trip!! Love the pictures in front of the Full House houses!

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