This post is about 10 Impressive Places To Visit In San Francisco. Some places are very cheap and some are expensive.
Fisherman’s Wharf is a popular historic neighborhood in San Francisco. It got its name in the 1800s when fishermen provided food for hordes of Gold Rushers and the Wharf became a home base for their fishing fleet. In the 1970s it became a world famous tourist attraction. Fisherman’s Wharf includes several interesting locations, such us: Pier 39, where you’ll find restaurants, shops, and other attractions, for example, sea lions, Bay cruises, carousel, Infinite Mirror Maze, aquarium, and many more. Visit the Cable car turnaround or take a ride on one of the famous San Francisco cable cars, the last working cable car system of its kind in the world. Or visit a Historic Pier 45 and Ghirardelli Square which was initially a chocolate factory.
The Palace of Fine Arts
The Palace of Fine Arts is a monumental structure built for the 1915 Panama-Pacific International Exposition to show to the world that San Francisco could be an international city, following a devastating earthquake and fire of 1906. In addition to the colossal Roman-ruins inspired architecture it features a lagoon and walkways, making it a popular location for art exhibitions, and a favorite spot for weddings. Take a short walk through this amazing architectural masterpiece. You can also visit The Wave Organ, a wave-activated acoustic sculpture, located nearby. The effects and intensity vary depending on the level of the tide. Sit back and enjoy the sound of the ocean.
Golden Gate Bridge
Golden Gate Bridge is one of the most recognized American symbols and has been declared one of the Wonders of the Modern World. It was built in 1937 and was the tallest and longest suspension bridge at the time of its construction. The bridge connects the strait between San Francisco Bay and the Pacific Ocean. With its “international orange” paint, and its picturesque surroundings it is said to be the most photographed bridge in the world. You can walk across the bride and decide which side hides the best spot for a selfie with this iconic piece of history.
The Sutro Baths is an open area on the ruins of what was once the largest indoor swimming pool in the world. Built at the end of the 19th century, it featured six saltwater and one freshwater pool. The baths struggled for many years due to high maintenance costs and in the 1960s transformed into an ice-skating ring, however, the facility burned to the ground short after. Nearby, you will find Camera Obscura, a rare device, based on a 15th century design by Leonardo da Vinci. It produces 360 degrees of live images of the Seal Rock Area.
Golden Gate Park
Golden Gate Park is a large urban park consisting of over 1,000 acres featuring hills, lakes, meadows, gardens, playgrounds, and buildings. The park offers a great escape from the city life and is an ideal place to take a walk, read a book, or have a picnic. The park is full of interesting locations, such as: Conservatory of Flowers, Japanese Tea Garden, Beautiful Stow Lake with Golden Gate Pavillion and Strawberry Hill, Alvord Lake Bridge which is believed to be the first reinforced concrete bridge in America, Dutch Windmill, one of the two windmills built to irrigate the park, and many other sights.
San Francisco is known for its rolling hills, and beautiful streets with cute and colorful houses and amazing ocean views. Don’t miss the following locations: Painted Ladies near Alamo Square, a row of Victorian homes with Edwardian elements, painted in different colors to enhance their architectural detail with a beautiful view of Downtown from the Alamo Square park above. 16th Avenue Tiled Steps – a neighborhood project where the community got together and raised funds to transform 163 steps into a work of art. Lombard Street with its steep, one-block section with eight sharp turns, claimed to be “the crookedest street in the world”. There are plenty more streets to discover.
Alcatraz Island got its name from the Spanish word usually defined as meaning “pelican” or “a strange bird.”. The island is famous for its abandoned prison, Alcatraz Federal Penitentiary. The first prison was constructed in the 19th century and rebuilt in 1911. It later became famous as “The Rock” and was believed to be escape-proof, due to cold waters and strong bay currents. It housed over 1,500 of America’s most ruthless criminals, such as Al Capone. The prison was forced to shut down in 1963 due to high maintenance costs and bad reputation. The island is now open for public.
The San Francisco Ferry Building is a terminal for ferries travelling across the San Francisco Bay. The building is located on Embarcadero, the street where San Francisco’s piers start, beginning with Pier 1, located right next to the Ferry building. The construction of the building was completed in 1898 as the largest city project at that time. The building features a food, retail, and restaurant hall, focusing on local and sustainable products and offers an amazing view towards the Oakland Bay Bridge.
Financial district is a Manhattan-like district, a concentration of tall buildings and corporate headquarters of numerous world-famous companies, such as Wells Fargo, PG&E, and Gap. The district underwent a construction boom in the second half of the 20th century when the building height restrictions were lifted due to better earthquake-proof building techniques. You can’t miss The Transamerica Pyramid, which was the tallest building in San Francisco until recent construction of Salesforce Tower.
While San Francisco has not one, but four Chinatowns, the one located on Grant Avenue is the biggest Chinatown outside Asia and the oldest one in North America. It was established in the mid 19th century and has played a major role among the Chinese immigrants in North America. It still retains its own customs, languages, and identity and offers a number of traditional Chinese shops, restaurants, and attractions, such as the Dragon Gate, Sing Chong Building, Tin How Temple, The Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association, and many more.