San Francisco counts only 800’000 inhabitants but it s famous worldwide for its skyline, which includes the Golden Gate Bridge and its liberal lifestyle. It is truly a unique city in many ways. It is also the main city in the Bay area, which includes the Silicon Valley contained in the San Jose, Oakland, and SFO triangle. The entire area is home to 6.6 million lives.

You are in America, so get yourself a rental car or a limo for the day, as without a car you will have a hard time closing the proposed loop in one day.

1. The city skyline and the Golden Gate Bridge

Weather you decide to go to the Golden Gate in the morning or in the evening for the sunset; you must exit the motorway on the North side of the bridge and climb the Conzelman road for a mile. That way you will have an amazing view of the Bridge and the city. If you have time on the way down, park the car and walk half way through the bridge and get a sense of how magnificent it is.

2. Land’s end to Telegraph hill, or the backbone of the city

Next drive to Land’s end, through the Presidio and return via Lincoln Way along the Golden Gate Park then turn on to Oak street until you reach Fillmore Street. Park the car and stretch your legs along this popular street, full of coffee shops and boutiques.

Then climb to Pacific Heights (Alta Plaza Park) and take another look at the view to the North embracing the bridge and Alcatraz.

Drive down to Lombard Street and follow it up all the way until you get to the windy part between Hyde and Leavenworth Street. That particular strectch says a lot about the hills in SFO. Then continue to Telegraph Hill and the “Coit” tower another amazing viewpoint over the Bay.

3. North beach and China town

Go to Columbus and Broadway, drop your car in a Parking lot and again stretch your legs around the downtown area before heading to the waterfront at Pier 39 to enjoy a clam chowder or some other seafood.

Enjoy the day…

Golden Gate Bridge, seen from Land's end

Golden Gate Bridge, seen from Land’s end

Alta Plaza Park, close to Pacific Heights

Alta Plaza Park, close to Pacific Heights

Fillmore Street on a party day, my favorite

Fillmore Street on a party day, my favorite

Lombard street, famous windy part

Lombard street, famous windy part

Sunset on the Pacific in Half Moon Bay

Sunset on the Pacific in Half Moon Bay


5 thoughts on “One day in San Francisco

    • Read: Why “One day city tour” ? (about the blog)

      In short I have lived or spent time professionally in those cities. All photos are by me and it shows :-).

      I often had visitors for a short period and had to prioritize what to show them. Over time I felt I had a good understanding of the essential places of the city and packaged them into a one-day tour.

      It is frustrating enough to be a business traveller and never have the time to visit a city but often people would use this as an excuse not to visit at all, which in my view is a pity.

      I would also agree that they are many different views to what can be done in one day, but decide I would share my view.

  1. Yes I keep Switzerland for the end but I have more European cities to cover 🙂 By the way it is part of a bigger exercise on travel. I am just warming up.

  2. Pingback: De la “blogosphère suisse romande” | Climb to the Stars

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