Charmed was one of my favorite shows when I was growing up, and ever since I’ve watched that show, I’ve wanted to travel to San Francisco. Now that I live in Las Vegas, the opportunity to go to San Francisco presented itself with open arms. With low gas prices and cool fall weather, my boyfriend and I drove 10 hours to the Golden Gate City (okay, my boyfriend did all of the driving). We stayed at Pacific Heights Inn for the three-day stay. The affordable hotel is located about four or five blocks from the piers, and we were fairly satisfied with its amenities.
We arrived in San Francisco in the late afternoon on a Wednesday, and the Coit Tower was closing in two hours, so we had to book it to the lookout. We climbed up several steep streets, and we arrived with an hour to spare. I was huffing and puffing – I really need to get in shape! We rode the tiny elevator up to the 13th floor to the top ($8 per adult). We could see all of the major landmarks of San Francisco – the Golden Gate Bridge, the Bay Bridge, Alcatraz and more.
Thursday met us with clouds and fog, and we walked to Pier 33 to take the ferry to Alcatraz ($30 per adult). Alcatraz resembled a creepy movie with old buildings and outdated amenities. We listened to real prisoners and guards that were at Alcatraz on the audio tour at the cell house. The jail cells looked like small dorms with a basic bed, sink and toilet.
After the Alcatraz tours, we walked around Pier 39, viewed the sea lions, and we had a bite to eat at Bubba Gump’s Restaurant, and afterwards, shopped around. We went to a shop called Out of the Box, and I attempted to solve several puzzle devices. We walked along the piers and Ghirardelli Square and later that evening, we walked to Pier 15/17 to the Exploratorium ($15 per adult). The Exploratorium building occupied an entire pier, and inside were hundreds of mini stations where you can experiment and learn about different sciences. In the evening, we went to a surf and turf restaurant, and I had some delicious clam chowder.
The next day we went to Marin Headlands and took pictures together with the Golden Gate Bridge. Afterwards, we went to Golden Gate Park and walked around the beautiful Botanical Gardens, and I saw some rare and exotic plants and even redwood trees as well. We made a quick stop to the Mosaic Steps then we went to the Cliff House and Sutro Baths, and we had lunch at a historical restaurant called Louis’. The food tasted good, but unfortunately, they only accept cash and their ATM did not work with Wells Fargo cards, so I waited awhile for my boyfriend to obtain cash. After that fiasco, we had a quick nap and went to a Swedish restaurant to have some type of meat fondue.
I felt sad to leave San Francisco on Saturday, but I felt happy to experience an amazing city with my boyfriend. Before we left, we stopped at Lombard Street, and we snapped several photos of the crazy, eight hairpin turns. We then drove to the Ord area near Seaside, CA, because I was born there. The old army post had dilapidated buildings with wooden boards covering the windows, and even though I was glad to have the opportunity to see my birthplace, I was sad that the area was no longer alive with daily hustle and bustle. We drove on Highway 1 next to the coast to see the gorgeous views of the Pacific Ocean. The drive was a bit terrifying with its twists and turns, but it was exciting and interesting. We turned off the highway to make our way back to Sin City.