Fodor's Expert Review Ghirardelli Square
Most of the redbrick buildings in this complex were once part of the Ghirardelli factory, which the prominent chocolate company purchased in 1893. Tourists visit to pick up the famous chocolate and indulge in ice cream sundaes at this dessert paradise (Ghirardelli's factory is now in the East Bay), though you can purchase the chocolates all over town and save yourself a trip to what is essentially a mall. But it's still a must-visit destination for chocolate lovers. Placards throughout the square describe the factory's history, and the giant Ghirardelli sign above the square, erected in 1923, remains one of the city's visual icons.