USA – California
home of Hollywood, Desserts, Forests and Bears
California is a state that has a lot to offer. From the cooler San Francisco with its famous Golden Gate Bridge up to the waterfalls and enormous trees in the national parks to the desserts of Joshua Tree, every hour driving shows a different landscape and surrounding. We decided to start our California trip in San Francisco, went over the National Parks Yosemite and Sequoia all to Los Angeles and from there further to the dessert Joshua Tree National Park before heading towards Nevada.
The city of hills, fog and a beautiful bridge
When we arrived in San Francisco, we decided to stay a bit closer to the airport and to use an Uber to enter the city. We had a few points on our sightseeing list that we definitely didn’t want to miss. So the next day we started our sightseeing adventure:
One priority of us was to visit the famous rock – Alcatraz! When we decided to go there it was already very difficult to find suppliers that had still tickets available. Usually the tour needs to be booked at least 3 month upfront. However we were lucky by using a third supplier and so the first thing in the morning after our arrival was Pier 33, the harbour of the ship that would bring us to Alcatraz. Arrived on the rock everything was very well organized. We got a brief introduction and could directly start the self-guided audio tour. It was very interesting and impressive learning about the time on the rock from prisoners and officers. We could see everything, cell blocks, the recreational area and all other rooms that were in use back then. After a 2 hour stay we took also our boat back enjoying the fresh breeze and beautiful view on San Francisco.
Pier 39 & Fishermen’s wharf
Not far walking from the pier that our Alcatraz tour was ending, is pier 39 and the famous and entertaining fishermen’s wharf. There you can find many restaurants, shops and artists to spend a few hours. For us the best part was the pier 39. We watched the seals talking a sun bath, playing and sleeping. It was an amazing and really funny stop and it it recommendable to enjoy some time there.
Cable Car & Downtown San Francisco
One of the traditional things to do in San Francisco is taking the cable car to discover the city. San Francisco is very hilly and therefore it is an amazing way to get from A to B. It took us quite long waiting until we could enter the cable car but it was worth the wait! We made our way though crazy curves all up and down the steep hills with a great view on the houses until we reached Downtown San Francisco. At Downtown we walked around, watched the restaurants, bars and shops and enjoyed the atmosphere of the city.
The painted ladies
For us it was very important to go to Alamo Square in order to watch the painted ladies. We both loved the tv show Full House and definitely wanted to see this park and the houses that were used for the intro. We were super lucky because parking was easy to find and so we could enjoy a small walk through the park until we had the perfect view on the painted ladies houses.
Another must see for us was the famous Lombard Street of San Francisco. We had already our rental car and therefore we even drove it down. The steep hill with the really heavy curves was super fun and it definitely a tourist attraction of the city.
Golden Gate Bridge
As a last sight we went to see the Golden Gate Bridge with its massive red poles. We drove over it enjoying the view on San Francisco and took all the way down to the lighthouse. The good thing of driving all the way to the lighthouse are the many viewing points. We stopped several times and enjoyed the different views on the bridge.
San Francisco is an amazing city with so many sights and entertaining places that just wait to be discovered. The charme of the city is special and we would definitely recommend to visit!