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2 Days in San Francisco--Best stuff to cram in? To do, see, eat, shop, walk?

2 Days in San Francisco--Best stuff to cram in? To do, see, eat, shop, walk?

Dec 13th, 2007, 12:54 AM
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 868
I wouldn't do an organized tour in SF. The city is very compact and very walkable. It's probably one of the best cities to walk in the US. There is no reason to spend your precious time on a bus in traffic. Get a good map and walk around Union Square, Pacific Heights, Fisherman's Wharf, Golden Gate Park, Haight, etc. There is plenty to occupy your 2 days just doing that. Walk around, shop, eat great food, etc. You'll love it.

I wouldn't go to Muir Woods on this trip. It's really too much to pack in. I think 2 days is just enough to walk through the major parts and soak in the city. If you really want to add something else to this trip, then you can take the BART to Berkeley or Rockridge.
smartcookie is offline  
Dec 13th, 2007, 07:13 AM
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 14,786
I'f you're going to walk around San Francisco instead of taking public transportation, you will also need a topographical map. For example, if you want to wander around in the Marina area and then Cow Hollow a bit, and then want to explore Pacific Heights, you'll be in for a big surprise. You should do the above itinerary in reverse.

Same for Fisherman's Wharf to Russian Hill, or Union St to Russian Hill.

Golden Gate Park is too far away to walk to from the other areas mentioned in the above post.

Stu Dudley
StuDudley is online now  
Dec 15th, 2007, 12:51 AM
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 19
LOTROP, San Francisco is a joy to visit, even if for only 2 days. Just read up on any San Francisco travel guide and do what appeals to you.

I been to Alcatraz, it's an interesting tour, but in the end it's just an old prison, and it's not my idea of entertainment.

I liked Muir Woods, I enjoyed the ride there and I enjoyed my short visit.

Cable cars and Lombard St. is a MUST DO.

I enjoyed Fisherman's wharf, Chinatown and the Embaracdeo.

Coit tower for me was just a nice view. Maybe it's just me.

I loved Golden Gate Park.

I loved Sausalito.

Read a guide book and do whatever appeals to you. The only right way to do SF is by your heart. The cool thing about SF is that there is something for everyone.
Cherish is offline  
Dec 15th, 2007, 09:42 AM
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Coit tower for me was just a nice view. Maybe it's just me.

Hey Cherish, I've lived here for 35 years and it's still just a "nice view" to me, too!
Dec 15th, 2007, 09:59 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 91,368
I've been in San Francisco several times for 1-2 days only and several times solo.

I stay near Union Square. One place I LOVED for lunch was Mocca, at 12 Maiden Lane (just off Union Square). Very comfortable solo because of the style of the place. Interesting excellent food.

Plan to do a LOT of walking, that's the best way to get around.

I already posted my usual itinerary for a couple days above (Union Square, Embarcadero, Chinatown and Fisherman's Wharf). You could ride BART somewhere, that's kind of fun.

Belden Place (an alleyway with a row of very good restaurants in the financial district) would be comfortable for an early dinner solo(gets crowded later on). www.belden-place.com

suze is online now  
Dec 15th, 2007, 02:05 PM
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 1
Coit Tower. Ok, so the real point of the visit is not the view but the murals inside the tower. They are wonderful. The view is nice, the walk down the staircase is fun as you get to see a more personal side of the city.

My advice for 2 days:
1) Skip Muir Woods - save it for your next trip (there is another ancient redwood preserve slightly further north in the middle of wine country)
2) take a city tour. Take the money you would have spent on Muir Woods, combine it with the cost of a city bus tour and hire a car/driver for your own personalized tour of the city. Use the '49 Mile Scenic Drive' map as a starting point. Hit all the spots that are hard to get to on foot.
3) take StuDudley's acvice about Chinatown. Stockton st is great.
4) you can buy a 3 day pass for all bus, cable cars and streetcars for only about $18. This way you can hop on/off of any passing public transportation to speed your path around the city.
5) dont miss Golden gate park. AND while you are out there check out the Beach Chalet. Located at the ocean end of Golden Gate park, the upstairs is a restaurant (overpriced and noisy) but the ground level is a lovely gallery with more 1930's era murals of San Francisco. Also lots of mosaic tile work.
Olive346 is offline  
Dec 15th, 2007, 02:33 PM
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 4,963
Like Chocolate? Ghirardelli Square.
Like Irish Coffee? The Buena Vista near GS.
Like gourmet goodies galore? Ferry Plaza building.
I see I've repeated what others have said. Also I like Swan Oyster Depot and Red's Java House. I keep meaning to try a couple of the Belden Place restaurants myself. EasyTraveler and Shanghaiese posted some good places for dim sum in the city on another post.
trippinkpj is offline  
Dec 15th, 2007, 08:40 PM
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 9,285
I am in SF right now for a quick weekend with my son and we love it. In addition to everything covered so far, I have a couple of food recommendations. Years ago, I loved the food at the Slanted Door. It is divine Vietnamese food. They used to be in the Mission district and appear to have moved to more posh digs. I still can't get reservations there and I've tried these last two trips albeit with 24 hr notice. Next time, I'll have to call before my trip. I guess it is still going strong. The decor at Farallon is gorgeous and I have enjoyed many great meals there but haven't dined there in a while. I love a mid afternoon coffee or hot chocolate stop in North Beach, there are lots of cool places there. We are hoping to check out the Golden Gate Park and the Exploratorium or DeYoung museum tomorrow or maybe the Ferry building and lunch at Fog City Diner. We had lunch today at Sears Fine Food; a historic restaurant near Union Square. The corned beef hash was unique and awesome and the 18 little swedish pancakes were really cute and delicious. It is a fabulous city. So much to see and do....would skip Muir woods for sure. An eclectic area to check out is around 25th and Clement....an Asian melting pot that is very uniquely ethnic. I like Chinatown but it IS very touristy. This area seems more real. Also loved the Hyde street pier with the historic ships....if you have any affinity for that sort of thing, the Balclutha is just gorgeous and I think some of the best views of SF are from this ship.
ncounty is offline  
Dec 26th, 2007, 12:14 PM
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 148
My favourite place to stay in SF is Union Square - can walk to incredible shops (second only to NY), fantastic restaurants and the wonderful market in the Ferry Building. I never miss SFMOMA (close to Union Square) which I like only slightly more to NYC's MOMA. I like the Harry Denton's Starlight Room at the top of the Sir Francis Drake Hotel - you feel like Cary Grant is going to walz by you as you gaze over the city and the Bay. The breakfast at the Garden Court in The Palace Hotel is ridiculously expensive but in one of the most beautiful restaurants I've ever been in. The Redroom in the Clift Hotel is a fantastic bar and is packed on Thursday nights. I am on my own most of the time but feel incredibly safe. BART is dead easy to use to get to the airport. Enjoy your trip!
ValCanada is offline  
Jan 17th, 2008, 07:49 AM
Join Date: Jan 2008
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