Country: United States
Currency: Dollar (USD)
Peak Season: June-September, November
Shoulder Season: May, October
Median Temperature: 13.70 C / 56.66 F
Main Languages: English
Primary Modes of Transportation: Bus, rail, cable car, trolley, ferry, bicycle, taxi
Recommended Duration of Stay: 3 days
Recommended Pocket Money: $130.00/day
Tourist Passes: San Francisco CityPASS
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San Francisco – often referred to as “The City” or “The City by the Bay” by locals – has always been a melting pot of political, social, cultural, and tech-savvy values. The cosmopolitan city has drawn international attention for being a forerunner of gay and lesbian rights and not to mention nesting an array of new technologies via Silicon Valley. San Francisco is one of the most densely-populated metropolitan cities in the United States; in spite of this, it is also one of the best places to live and work, courtesy of its upbeat neighborhoods and unrestrained workplaces. San Francisco’s entertainment, historical, and sporting facilities make it a great tourist hub. Many foreigners usually set the city as their primary US itinerary, along with New York, Las Vegas, and Seattle.

The media has always associated San Francisco with auspiciously sunny skies and moderate climate, so one would mistake this to be the case all year long. The city, in actuality, has always been encapsulated in fog due its adjacence to the San Francisco Bay. And probably the most recognizable landmark of the city is the Golden Gate Bridge, which connects the San Francisco to Marin County, north of the city. It is the longest suspension bridge. The bridge itself protracts 2.7 kilometers; both its main towers rise to 227 meters above sea level; both slanting main wire cables span to 2,332 meters.

Packing List

  • Smart (or even surreal) clothing and added vestments for the cold—there are no bounds with what you wear in SF, so don your outfit with grace and elegance and never try to look conscious
  • Backpacks and comfortable walking shoes; public transport is nice, but it has been a tradition for tourists to venture the city by foot, only taking taxis and cable cars when time is of the essence
  • A decent camera and a map of the public transport system; the city is safe and has the reputation of being a geek circuit thanks to Silicon Valley, so strapping on all those gadgets won’t turn heads
  • Credit cards/ATMs for Haight, Fillmore, and Union Square shopping; independent designers and specialty shops proliferate the city to satisfy the cravings of SF’s many eccentric subcultures
  • Essential medication and toiletries; cough and cold medication can do wonders for the belligerent weather, while antihistamines are well-suited for those planning to munch on seafood

Things to Do

  • Visiting the eerie cells America’s most feared mob bosses and serial killers in Alcatraz Island (now defunct); a maximum security penitentiary, it was famous for incarcerating Al Capone
  • Visiting the eerie cells America’s most feared mob bosses and serial killers in Alcatraz Island (now defunct); a maximum security penitentiary, it was famous for incarcerating Al Capone
  • Eating scrumptious seafood from any of the restaurants in Ghirardelli Square at Fisherman’s Wharf—also the location of decommissioned WW2 submarine (museum), the USS Pampanito
  • Appreciating unconstrained visuals and tangibles at Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA); it houses masterpieces of famed 20th century artists: Warhol, Pollock, Matisse, and Duchamp to name a few
  • Interacting with the hands-on exhibits inside the Exploratorium; many of the 1000+ exhibits are presented by their own inventor; displays range from simple devices to über-complex contraptions

DON'T

  • Proclaim a conservative stance on politics and society, unless of course you’re ready to argue for hours with the mounds of liberals; do not be shocked to see every possible persona flung around
  • Say rude things to homosexuals and transgenders; San Francisco is as liberal and as retaliating as any city can get; don’t incite hate, or end up getting beaten by gays double your physique
  • Be hip when you’re actually not; some people like to dress up for California, but really just can’t—keep real to yourself and don’t let the city encroach you because you’ll only be there for a few days
  • Patronize too much of the “international brands,” as SF is has many independent establishments, so contemplate going for a unique, frothy brew before settling for Starbucks or Subway
  • Confine yourself to one district of the city; there’s plenty of artistry and waiting to be seen in SF, so utilize all public transport before rush hour, or else be trapped in a fleet of cars and buses