"San Francisco: An Alternate Take" San Francisco by richiecdisc
San Francisco Travel Guide: 9,173 reviews and 19,518 photos
San Francisco is a hard city to not fall in love with. With an astonishing physical setting and a jumble of architectural styles from an assortment of eras, the former California Gold Rush capital captivates like few others. Surrounded on three sides by glorious water, this peninsular hill-laden marvel would be a candidate for National Park status if they'd never built a city here in the first place. In fact, much of what surrounds the man-made structures is part of the National Park system. Spacey modern skyscrapers and turn of the century relics intermingle effortlessly, salted generously with Victorian and Edwardian homes to add color.
Ethnicity is at the forefront with the nation's most colorful Chinatown, a sprawling Hispanic neighborhood, and a taste of Italy right in the city center. So, you know there's food to be eaten in them there hills. But what you notice as you wander up and down the forty-five degree inclines, aside from a confluence of spectacular views, is the utter silence of this gem of a town. There are no honking horns and people seem to speak in whispers. Perhaps they're trying to keep a secret about the place they live in. Can you blame them? Because when cities dream, they dream they're San Francisco.
My first visit to San Francisco was back in 1994. I liked it so much I returned a few weeks later. It really has to be my favorite city in the world. My new wife and I came in 2005 as a belated honey-moon of sorts and she immediately fell in love with it too.
We returned in 2008 as part of a six-month camping trip around the Western US National Parks so it was a brief stop of only two days but we got to revisit some old friends and firmly establish our continuing affair with this great city. I've added a few new tips, updated others, and added some much improved photos thanks to going with a digital SLR before embarking on the trip. Enjoy!
San Francisco's Chinatown is the best in the US and like walking right into an Asian city sans flight. We arrived... more travel advice
In the spring of 2008, we stopped in San Francisco as part of a six-month camping trip around the US Western National... more travel advice
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