San Francisco Journals

San Francisco: The City by the Bay

A March 2005 trip to San Francisco by queserasera

Marina Inn Photo, San Francisco, California More Photos
Quote: Eight Fantastic Days in San Francisco

San Francisco: The City by the Bay

Overview

Lombard Street Photo, San Francisco, California
Quote:
San Francisco exceeded my expectations, and the 8 days that my husband and I spent there were beyond compare. Don't miss the Golden Gate Park, the Palace of Fine Arts, the bay cruise, the Marina District, and Chinatown. Quick Tips: Weather: We visited in March and had sunny, mild days mixed with chilly wind and a day or two of rain. Money-Saving Tip: If you'll be in town for a while, consider purchasing a City Pass. The pass includes a bus/cable car pass and gets you into five attractions:• Blue & Gold Fleet Bay Cruise (You'll see Alcatraz and the Golden Gate Bridge and great views of the city. Fun but windy!!!) • Exploratorium (This hands-on, scienc...Read More

Marina Inn

Hotel

Marina Inn Photo, San Francisco, California
Quote:
The Marina Inn was a simple, clean hotel. The bathroom was in need of some repairs and the shower head was low, even for petite me, but everything worked okay. We didn't have a good view but were in a quiet room that didn't face busy Lombard. The bus stops at the end of the block on Chestnut Street, making it easy to get around the city. The basic continental breakfast was plenty for us, and we couldn't have asked for more for $80/night. We could walk to the shops and restaurants in the Marina District, which we adored. It is a great place for budget travelers!

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on January 17, 2006

Marina Inn
3110 Octavia Street
San Francisco, California 94123
(415) 928-1000

The Cartwright Hotel

Best Of IgoUgo

Hotel | "Cartwright Hotel"

Quote:
If you need to stay closer to the heart of the city, the Cartwright Hotel is a good, reasonably priced option. We preferred the Marina District to the Union Square area, but the Cartwright was quite nice and welcoming. They serve a continental breakfast with lots of options, and there is a lovely manager's reception in the afternoons. Our room was tucked into a tiny corner at the back of the hotel, and the bathroom was quite small, but the bed was nice and comfortable and the room featured a desk.It's a few blocks to the bus stop and quite a bit uphill hike to the cable cars (maybe my legs were worn out by the time we stayed here for last 4 days of the trip), but cabs abound...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on January 17, 2006

The Cartwright Hotel
524 SUTTER STREET
San Francisco, California 94102
(415) 421-2865

Blue & Gold Fleet

Attraction | "Blue and Gold Fleet Bay Cruise"

Blue & Gold Fleet Photo, San Francisco, California
Quote:
This bay cruise was included in our City Pass pack. You leave from the pier where all of the seals and sea lions lounge around. It was incredibly windy but perfectly clear on the day of our cruise. The highlights were seeing Alcatraz, the underside of the magnificent Golden Gate bridge, and the city of San Francisco--domes of the Palace of Fine Arts, Coit Tower, TransAmerica Pyramid, etc. The narration was quite interesting and virtually (if not entirely) free of cheesy jokes. Don't miss this!

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on January 17, 2006

Blue & Gold Fleet
Pier 41 Marine Terminal
San Francisco, California 94133
(415) 705-5555

Palace of Fine Arts

Attraction

Palace of Fine Arts Photo, San Francisco, California
Quote:
I had seen the Palace of Fine Arts, a structure built for the 1915 Panama-Pacific International Exposition, on television, but it was even more spectacular in person. What is it? Well, I think that it would be best described as a park.

The National Park Service's website does a better job than I can: the Palace is "a classical Roman rotunda with curved colonnades in an idyllic park setting. Visitors may picnic, stroll by the lake, or visit the Exploratorium's hands-on science exhibits in the adjacent museum." Beautiful and fun to explore! Children will enjoy the educational, hands-on exhibits in the Exploratorium.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on January 17, 2006

Palace of Fine Arts
At the corner of Baker and Beach streets
San Francisco, California 94123
+1 415 563-6504

Golden Gate Park

Attraction

Golden Gate Park Photo, San Francisco, California
Quote:
We met up with some friends to explore this large, lovely park. It's a great place to walk, picnic, and relax. The Japanese Tea Garden was a highlight and worth the modest admission fee (less than $4 when we visited). According to the San Francisco Parks Trust, it's "the oldest public Japanese garden in the United States."

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on January 17, 2006

Golden Gate Park
501 Stanyan Street
San Francisco, California 94118
(415) 831-2700