We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

TR -- Loved the city soo much we came back!

Galveston, Texas
Level Contributor
2,134 posts
89 reviews
Save Topic
TR -- Loved the city soo much we came back!

How this trip came about: We, [Mum, Dad and DD20] decided this year that we wanted to revisit New York and San Francisco again, BA had a sale on, and then the trip then evolved into other places we would like to visit, and in the end we came up, with this trip; NYC 4 nights [3rd visit], Boston 3 nights, Niagara Falls 3 nights [Canadian Side], Cedar Point 2 nights, Chicago 3 nights and San Francisco 5 nights [2nd visit], everywhere else were brand new locations we had never visited before.

Last year, we visited SF on part of a road trip for 4 nights, and didn't get to see everything we wanted, so came back this year! My TR might not be as detailed as I'd like. I stopped writing notes half way through the trip, so this is all from memory and photos all the way back from 7-12 Sept.

Anyway on with the TR....


Wed 7th: Flight out of Midway, Chicago at 7pm with Southwest, we also flew with JetBlue to Buffalo, a quick 1hr flight, and we were very impressed with JetBlue we received free drinks and snacks on board, full size cans as well. The best thing though was the live TV, and you didn’t have to wait to start watching it, only went off while taking off and landing. It was on already when we got on the plane! Seats were comfy too, good enough legroom. Whereas Southwest was 4hr flight, no entertainment what-so-ever; staff wasn’t as friendly or hard working as JetBlue, though we did get free snacks, that we could take as much as we liked. Would definitely choose JetBlue over Southwest.

Didn’t arrive in San Francisco until 10pm, collected luggage and brought 7 day visitor passes from the airport...still cash only at the airport too. Grabbed a taxi into the city, and checked into the Royal Pacific Motor Inn. Well, you guys were right the Pacific isn’t the place you want to spend your holiday on, the pillows were as flat as a pancake and it was dark dingy...that’s what you get for being cheap. So we checked out in the morning, and we didn’t get charge anything additional for checking out early, just paid the night’s stay.

Grabbed a taxi and headed to the Westin on Market St, one of the cheaper options left available on booking soo late, still a lot more than we paid for the Pacific Motor Inn. The check-in lady was very friendly and since we’d travelled such a distance to get here [England, not from Chinatown!], she put us on the 32nd floor, great views out of our floor to ceiling window. Much, much nicer hotel room too :)


Thurs 8th: Anyway we’ve kinda creeped onto the next day, before checking out of the Motor Inn, we grabbed breakfast at Isabella’s not far away, a little quaint cafe, with ok to nice food. We also rode the cable car that morning too, before heading back to the MI to check out, back in Chinatown the place was heaving, the sidewalks were full to the brim with everyone buying their fresh food.

Once checked in at the Westin, we then headed out into the city, the aim if today was to ride all the cable car lines, and visit the cable car museum. Which we managed to ride ALL the lines, both ways [last year we never managed to ride a cable car once!] and we even broke even on our passes that day, [the passes are definitely worth the money if you’re gonna use the cable cars a lot] the museum was interesting cool to see the wheels which run the lines. Riding the cars is soo much fun, you have to stand on the outside going downhill is FUN!

Next we were hungry, and had to have an In-n-Out Burger while in California so headed to Fisherman’s Wharf, but not before checking out the sealions [which there weren’t many compared to the amount we saw last year]. In-n-Out was crazy busy as usual, we ordered some stuff on the secret menu, my Dad’s on a carb-free diet so we got him a protein style double double no cheese [I love how specific you can be], got fries well done [not that, that helped them taste any better, McDonalds fries win hands down, no competition], and of course a chocolate milkshake...delicious.

Ghirardelli’s next for dessert, good as usual. Next we were going to get the cable car up to the top of Lombard St and walk down, but the queue at the turnaround was a expected huge, so we decided to walk it, we’d also ridden the lines both ways anyway. Well Hyde St up to Lombard St is steep! Go to the top of Lombard St, and walked down [last year we drove, so now we’ve done it both way], I’ve heard you can ride a segway down it, that’s the next thing!

After Lombard St, we headed back to the hotel. Dad hit the Gym and Mum and I hit Union Square and did a bit of shopping and stopping off at Super Duper Burger for dinner on the way back, second burger for the day, but good also! Back to our lovely hotel room, and bed.


More to come...

Ferry Building Marketplace
Shopping Malls, Points of Interest & Landmarks,
Heart of the City Farmers' Market
Flea & Street Markets, Farmers Markets
San Francisco...
Level Contributor
1,289 posts
15 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: TR -- Loved the city soo much we came back!

Sounds like fun so far. I look forward to the rest of the story!

Galveston, Texas
Level Contributor
2,134 posts
89 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: TR -- Loved the city soo much we came back!

Fri 8th – Today we were biking the Golden Gate Bridge, we biked it last year into Sausalito without Dad, this year Dad came and the aim was to bike all the way to Tiburon. Before a long bike ride the first thing you need is a good breakfast, and we headed to Sear’s Fine Food. I had the famous 18 Swedish Pancakes, which I managed to demolish [usually if I get pancakes I can’t eat them all, but these I managed] and they were good. The slot machine at the end is also good fun, a nice thing for the restaurant to do, we didn’t win but we saw/heard a few other people win stuff.

Next we headed to Blazing Saddles, the same place we rented from last year, the location near the Ghirardelli’s. The bike fun was fun; the bridge was busy and hard to bike on. Very fogged up Golden Gate Bridge though [we still don’t have a clear photo of the bridge], stopped in Sausalito for lunch, got burgers at Hamburgers [can you see a reoccurring theme?], burger was good then good ice cream from Lappert’s.

We had a wander around town, and relaxed in the park where they were setting up for an event, before hopping back on the bikes heading to Tiburon. There was a few hills but we managed to bike up most of them, got a little lost in Strawberry and headed up a huge hill, realising we weren’t going the right way. Turned back and got to ride back down a great, long hill....soo much fun! Got on the right track, and had a nice easy flat road to ride on, with some very pretty views of the bridge, saw kids playing soccer with rolling hills behind with the fog beginning to set in them...so pretty. Managed to pick up a lot of speed on the bikes at times too.

Arrived in Tiburon and the ferry was just there, but decided to wait for the next one, as we had just arrived in Tiburon, we should see some of it. They were also setting up for an event that evening on the shortest Main St. Had another ice cream, and just relaxed in the sunshine. Tiburon or Sausalito would be such a cool, relaxing place to live, and just a ferry ride to San Francisco commuting to work.

Got the ferry out of Tiburon, back to the Ferry Building. Dad and I sat on the top of the ferry, which was freezing cold, but amazing views on the sun setting, the fog setting in, Tiburon disappearing in the distance. Then on the other side seeing the San Francisco skyline appear. We disembarked and biked our way along Fisherman’s Wharf. Arriving back at Blazing Saddles just before they closed at 8pm. It was a long bike ride, but GREAT!

We then wait at the turnaround for the cable car, and headed back to the hotel, we were full and only needed something light for dinner so just grabbed a salad a Walgreens, before heading back to the hotel and watching a movie in the room. Overall a fun day.

Galveston, Texas
Level Contributor
2,134 posts
89 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: TR -- Loved the city soo much we came back!

Sat 10th – Today we hit the Farmer’s Market for breakfast; we got sandwiches from Cowgirl Creamery, and had a wander around the market sampling some fresh fruit. The place was very busy and popular hard to walk through the crowds at some stages.

Next we got the F Line down into Castro, this was our first time on the F Line, and we were in a yellow street car, I can’t remember where from though. We had a wander through Castro stopping a Starbucks, saw the Theatre and through Dolores Park, before heading back to the hotel.

Then Dad went to the Gym at the hotel and Mum and I went shopping in Union SQ, not on Thursday as I said. Afterwards we then headed out for a late dinner in North Beach, where we had an enjoyable meal at Sodini’s, on Green St. Last year we had previously eaten at the pizza place Caffe BaoNecci a few doors up, a very good meal also. At Sodini’s they obviously noticed we were tourists and automatically added their tip on, I hate when restaurants do this they don’t state it on their menu, it’s so rude. We know how to tip! I know others tourists might not tip, but at the end of the day is it optional, puts a downer on a good meal.


Sun 11th – Today was our last full day in SF, and we were to spend it in Golden Gate Park. First we had a nice enjoyable breakfast at Zazie’s on Cole St in Cole Valley. We had about a 20min wait or so for the table and went and grabbed a coffee from Tully’s while we waited. I had read about both the gingerbread pancakes and Tahiti French Toast, so I ordered one of each, while my parents both had the “Un, Deux, Trois”. We got great seats outside, I had just requested 1st available table, but it was nice to sit outdoors when the weather was great too. We all enjoyed our breakfast, one of the best we had in SF [Sears was good too].

Next we walked to the park, there was an Opera concert being set up, we had seen a leaflet about Segways tours, and had never been on a Segway before so decided to give it a go. They didn’t have any availability on the 12pm tour, so we booked ourselves on the 4pm instead. Next we headed to the Japanese Gardens, which I hadn’t read where a bit of a waste of money but my parents were interested, as expected the place was a bit of a letdown.

We then walked to Stow Lake, and saw and watched the birds and ducks and turtles while relaxing in some SF sunshine, we then got on the shuttle bus around the park, doing the full loop. Before heading to the DeYoung Museum and heading up to the Observatory Deck. Next we grabbed a late light lunch, hotdogs from the vendor behind the bandstage, where the Segway Tour departed.

Before we knew it, it was 4pm and time for our tour. This tour was great fun; we’d never ridden Segways before and we were a little nervous. You get a practise session before you head out into the park, basically you just lean a little forward or backwards similar to a Wii Fit Board. We headed out in single file, you all get headsets so you can hear the tour guide. TBH it’s just fun riding around on the segways going uphill’s, downhill’s, speeding up then stopping etc... Highly recommend this tour; they also do one where you go down Lombard St, which would be soo fun.

After the tour, I’m not sure what we did the photos stopped and I don’t know what we had for dinner!


Mon 12th – Last day in San Francisco, today the plan was Mama’s for breakfast, then the Exploratorium. Guess what, both closed on Monday’s! So we were by Washington Square Park, and ended up having breakfast at Cafe Divine, it was good I had a smoke salmon bagel which I enjoyed. Next as my guide book said the Exploratorium was closed, we ended up doing some things we’ve already done, or things we hadn't done yet. So we rode the cable cars some more, got the bus to Haight St, had a stroll around saw some nice houses around the Panhandle park. Then we got off at City Hall which has lots of really nice different architectural buildings, before grabbing a late lunch at Super Duper Burger before getting on the BART to the airport. The BART was an easy ride to the airport, but buying tickets was confusing you don’t just put in your want 3xtickets to SFO then put the money in. It weird you have to put in multiples of what you want, it’s just strange. TBH I’d stay if you had a large suitcase each, not to ride the BART, there isn’t anywhere to put them, and some people are just rude, there should be a storage area for them.


Overall though we had a very enjoyable stay in SF, and got to see lots more than before. The Westin was a really nice hotel in a good location.


Level Contributor
165 posts
Save Reply
4. Re: TR -- Loved the city soo much we came back!

Lovely report you clearly had an amazingly fun time. I was there not long after you and must go back too.

5. Re: TR -- Loved the city soo much we came back!

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This topic has been closed to new posts due to inactivity. We hope you'll join the conversation by posting to an open topic or starting a new one.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

We remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason.

Removed on: 26 October 2012, 02:17