San Francisco, California: Sightseeing, Shopping and Dining
by Sandra Shin
Although it was almost impossible to enjoy the numerous world-famous attractions of San Francisco during my short stay, I tried my best to experience every aspect of the city as much as possible: from the iconic Golden Gate and Bay bridges to the waterfront Fisherman’s Wharf. From the very beginning of my trip landing at the convenient San Francisco International Airport, I discovered that San Francisco was full of life with people who were enjoying a variety of culture, food, sights and more.
Enjoying the View of Downtown San Francisco from the Twin Peaks
In addition to the stunning view of the Golden Gate Bridge, I wanted to visit a place where I could see the whole city at a glance. While driving along the hilly road of Twin Peaks Drive, I could see two adjacent peaks. And when I reached the top, a spectacular, postcard view was spreading in front of me. With the view of the Golden Gate Bridge to the far left, downtown San Francisco to the front and the Bay Bridge to the right, I could literally see the whole city of San Francisco at a glance. Gazing at this one-of-a-kind view from an open field rather than from the inside of a tall building was even more fantastic.
Vibrant Union Square: Shopping, Performances, Events and More
While the Twin Peaks offered the whole city view of San Francisco at a glance from a distance, I was able to experience the charm of downtown closely and vividly in Union Square. The area was busy with hotels, restaurants and shopping malls, and was vibrant with eye-catching street performances and public art here and there. In addition, there were several stores where I could sample the diverse offerings of San Francisco. Among them, the experience at Gump’s was quite unique: The store displayed a variety of works from both local and international artists, which made me feel like I was walking through a museum. Above all, the famous cable cars passing through the streets added further romance and charm to this wonderful city.
San Francisco’s Culinary Experiences
Besides the variety of cultures and foods, you would probably not be able to talk about San Francisco without discussing wine. I visited Ram’s Gate Winery in Sonoma. It was another great pleasure to visit the wine regions that are conveniently located near the city and taste wine on site. One of my favorites was Ram’s Gate Winery in Sonoma. You can also try Napa and Sonoma’s fine wines in many restaurants in San Francisco.
There were so many places I wanted to visit if time allowed: North Beach, which is called Little Italy; Haight Ashbury, the center of Bohemian culture; Alamo Square, where you can enjoy the Painted Ladies; Fisherman’s Wharf, where you can fully enjoy the charm of this port city, and so much more. San Francisco makes its own unique culture out of a variety of different aspects. It offered me a great amount of memories and fun, and I can’t wait to go back.