This summer I went on a trip to San Francisco with my husband and his family, we stayed there for a week and we got time to visit a lot of places and eat in some great restaurants! We stayed at the Grand Hyatt Hotel which is close to Union Square, it was a great location with lots of shops and restaurants. Now I am going to put a list and tips of what to do and where to eat in the city.
What to Do
Since we had a week there we did a lot of things but I am going to suggest the top 5 things you can’t miss while visiting San Francisco:
1.Go to Golden Gate Bridge: or you can walk or bike across, it is one of the most famous bridges in the world and the view of the city is just incredible from there, but sometimes the fog is so strong that you cannot see anything, so before you go, check how it is. And wear a jacket, this is the best advice I can give you, it is really windy there.
2.Ride a cable car: OK, few locals ride cable cars, but it is part of a San Francisco experience, everyone should do it at least once. We went during school vacations so the city was really full and it wasn’t that easy to get on a cable car, you need to be very patient, and a tip, don’t count on cable cars to be your main way of transportation, it can be really frustrating.
3.Drive down the Lombard Street: is one of the most unique vertically curvy street and is a great stop to add to any itinerary, you can either walk or ride down the street. On the top of the Lombard Street is one of the most beautiful views of the city with the sea and the houses there are all so charming (poor people that lives there!).
4.Day trip to Napa Valley: if you are going to be in San Francisco for more than 3 days you should definitely go to a vineyard in Napa, it is 1h40 minutes ride but it is so worth it. We went to the Starling Vineyards, that was a recommendation of our hotel and it was great, we did some wine tasting and a visit to the vineyard and in the end you can enjoy your last wine with the most amazing view of the place.
5.Do the audio tour in Alcatraz: it really is much cooler than you think. Once home to some of America’s most notorious criminals, the federal penitentiary that operated here from 1934 to 1963 brought a dark mystique to “The Rock”, you can do an audio tour through all the prison narrated by ex-guards and ex-prisoners telling you the history of the island and its the most beautiful view of San Francisco.
Where to Eat
Here is a list of some restaurants that we went that I really like, some in San Francisco and in other close cities:
1.The Franciscan: located at the pier 43, has the most beautiful view of San Francisco Bay, the Golden Gate Bridge and Alcatraz. It is a restaurant specializing in crab and has great sea food. For appetizer, we ordered the Iron Skillet Rosted with mussels, shrimp and crab, and our main course was the famous crab and clam chowder on the bread bowl.
2.È Tutto Qua!: a real Italian restaurant, the staff are really welcome and the food is great! Everyone on the table ordered pizza, for me the best pizza flavor was the Italiana with prosciutto, arugula, fresh mozzarella and shaved parmesan.
3.Hakkasan: located on the second floor of the iconic One Kearny building in downtown San Francisco, it is one of the best Chinese restaurants in town. All the dishes are to share so everybody on the table can eat a little bit of everything, we ordered hakka organic pork belly, baked lamb chop, spicy prawn and three-style mushroom. The food was delicious and the decor is really cool.
4.The Spinnaker: only a minute’s drive across the Golden Gate Bridge, in Sausalito is The Spinnaker. The restaurant has a floor to ceiling glass walls with a view of San Francisco skyline, Sausalito Waterfront, Alcatraz and the Bay Bridge. There you can appreciate a delicious sea food with an amazing view!
5.Cascal: if you are going to visit Apple and Google you should definitely stop at Mountain View and have lunch at Cascal. The restaurant concept is to mix the traditional Spanish food with the warm hospitality of Latin America. The decor is so pretty and the food is amazing, we ordered fried olives, beef empanadas, braised pork belly, wild mushroom empanadas (one of the best things I ate in my life, really!) and Peruvian ceviche for the whole table.