Discover California’s San Francisco Bay Area

It’s home to a little bit of everything, and because it’s quite geographically small, the best thing about visiting San Francisco Bay is that it’s entirely possible to visit many places, see lots of sights and landmarks, and do quite a lot in a relatively short amount of time. It’s also pretty easy to spend a number of weeks in San Francisco and still miss out on seeing everything that this amazing city has to offer. If you’re planning on making a trip to San Francisco, read on as we’ve put together a list of the best places to visit and things to do.

Walk Over the Golden Gate Bridge

No visit to San Francisco is complete without seeing this iconic landmark. One of the most well-known and visited bridges in the world, the Golden Gate Bridge impresses even the most traveled of visitors with its 1.7 mile length. Each day, approximately 1,200 vehicles drive over this bridge, and it’s said to be one of the most photographed things in the world.

Ride a Cable Car

Since the late 19th century, cable cars have been a main mode of transport used in San Francisco. Running on tracks, the cars are controlled by an underground cable on three different routes. Tickets are only seven dollars, and they can be purchased at the end of each route at the cable car turnarounds. It’s an exciting experience that will provide you with stunning views of the city.

Visit the Rock

Once a notorious prison, Alcatraz is located on an island in the center of San Francisco Bay. Once home to some of the most dangerous and notorious criminals in the USA, none were ever able to successfully escape ‘The Rock’, although many tried. Closed down in the 1960’s, the stories about Alcatraz have become legendary. Today, it has become a tourist attraction and provides fascinating tours of the cells.

Shop in Union Square

Union Square is a popular destination for serious shoppers, and since it’s so central, it’s easy to get to from most hotels including the Palo Alto hotel, Nest Palo Alto. Home to an impressive number of both major department stores and designer boutiques, The Westfield San Francisco Shopping Center proudly boasts the second largest Bloomingdale’s in the US outside of New York City.

Visit North Beach

Names can be deceiving – North Beach isn’t actually a beach. It’s a romantic neighborhood with boutique sidewalk cafés, restaurants, and shops. Located near Washington Square, it’s also home to the beautiful Church of Saints Peter and Paul, a landmark which must be seen. If you’re planning to take some stunning photos of the bridges and the Bay, you can visit Coit Tower, on Telegraph Hill which is an excellent vantage point for photographers.

Have you visited San Francisco in the past? Where are your favorite places to go to and things to do and see in this amazing, vibrant city? If you’ve got any advice for first-time visitors, we’d love to hear all about your experiences in the comments below.