San Francisco: Golden State Park and Muir Woods


On the morning of our last full day in San Francisco we decided to explore the Golden Gate Park after securing our parking reservation for Muir Woods in the afternoon.  We walked through the beautiful Botanical Garden which had a large number of exotic plants from different countries, including New Zealand and Australia. We strolled over to the Japanese Tea Garden, but the uneven and elevated paths proved too difficult for me to navigate completely.  We ate our lunch consisting of a hot dog, chocolate covered ice cream bar and soda (very unusual foods for health-minded folks like us!) and headed off

Just outside of San Francisco, not far from the north side of the Golden Gate Bridge, is Muir Woods, a National Monument. This is a beautiful setting full of redwoods, along with other trees and plants.  After walking together for about 1/4 mile, Fran took off to hike one of the trails while I sat and rested my knees at one of the benches provided in this scenic haven outside of the city.

After leaving the park we returned to our hotel and then walked to the Dim Sum Club for dinner. This was some of the best Chinese food I’ve eaten! One could tell that it was authentic due to the number of Chinese families eating there.

We were really blessed to have beautiful weather during our three-day stay in San Francisco. The fog only rolled in the night before we left for our next destination: Monterey Bay Area.


Hyde Street Pier: San Francisco Maritime National Historic Park

Enjoying our day out in the city, Tracy, Fran, and I made our way down to the San Francisco Maritime National Historic Park on Hyde Street Pier. Tracy and Fran explored the old boats while I observed a number of people swimming in the frigid waters. There seemed to be a group of some sort who wore swim caps, but not wet suits, near the beach.  It seemed a little odd, but they seemed to be enjoying themselves as they swam laps in the water.

This is a different perspective of Alcatraz and the Coit Tower, as seen from the Eureka:

When we finally made our way back to the hotel, we bade goodbye to Tracy, who departed for Santa Barbara. We finished our evening with ice cream at Bobo’s Burger Bar across the street from our hotel.

San Francisco: Fisherman’s Wharf

After stopping at the Exploratorium, a cool place designed for the young at heart with hands-on activities, we made our way to Fishermans Wharf via a bike taxi.  That young man earned every cent as he pedaled his way to our destination! We had a late lunch at one of the restaurants there, then walked along the piers and street. Fran enjoyed seeing the colorful boats and the “Love Tours” van, which she thought was so symbolic of San Francisco.

And what is San Francisco without its famed cable cars?  Unfortunately, we didn’t get a chance to ride one on this trip.


San Francisco: First views and Coit Tower

We arrived in San Francisco in the late afternoon after stopping in Sausolito. Our hotel room had a nice view of the city landscape and the Golden Gate Bridge. After Tracy got settled in at his hotel, we walked to dinner at Helmund Palace, a cozy Afghani restaurant on Van Ness Street with an authentic decor and food to match. The food was very good and abundant–we couldn’t eat it all! This is a great place to dine if you ever visit the area!

After breakfast the next morning we called a taxi to take us to Coit Tower via “the crookedest street in the world”, otherwise known as Lombard Street. There were beautiful flower gardens and lots of tourist on this street, which made it a little more hazardous. We told the taxi driver that we wanted to see if he could navigate it, which brought a great laugh from all of us.

At Coit Tower not only were the views of the city great, but the murals inside were quite interesting. We had the good fortune to have a personalized tour due to my mobility issues with stairs. Our guide was full of stories about San Francisco and the tower itself, which were pretty insightful. She took several of pictures of us, capturing the views from various angles, and suggested a couple of places to visit near Fisherman’s Wharf.  So off to our next leg of our adventure!