So lately I’ve been missing my life in the city. As you may or may not know, my family moved from San Diego to San Francisco when I was about 6 months pregnant with Olivia. It was a very tough decision for our family but ultimately it was the best move for us at the time for my husband’s career. After living there for a year my husband was able to get a job with a new company which brought us back to San Diego and back to our home. Don’t get me wrong, we have a beautiful home and it’s nice having a yard for our pup, but there was something so fun and spontaneous about living in a city like San Francisco. There were so many neighborhoods with different vibes and you could eat at a different restaurant every day! I really miss walking everywhere especially. Life back in suburbia is more driving everywhere and back to chain stores and restaurants LOL!
So I thought I’d do a little post on my favorite things to do in San Francisco in case you ever make it to the city. There is seriously so much to do I could go on and on but I’ll include a bunch of my favorites here in no particular order.
1. Battery Spencer– The Golden Gate Bridge is a MUST SEE when visiting SF! You have to drive across the bridge and walking it is so much fun too! But the best viewpoint for pics is Battery Spencer. This lookout point is located on the north side of the bridge and gives you the perfect angle. The pic above is from the lookout. There is a road that will take you up the mountain for all sorts of different viewpoints but this one is the best. Just a heads up… get there early if you are going on the weekend! Parking is free but very limited and it can get very crowded with tourists. It’s also super windy and chilly since it’s right on the bay so make sure to dress accordingly.
2. Alcatraz– I would say this is something fun to do if you have a few days in the city. Make sure you buy your tickets at least a few days in advance, and if you are going on any holidays I would buy them as far in advance as you can. THIS is the official site for the Alcatraz Tours. Be careful of people trying to sell tickets randomly on the streets as they could be fake. You’ll want to bring a jacket really no matter what time of year you visit since it’s always so cold right on the bay and the prison itself is really windy and chilly. They give you headphones at the beginning of the tour and give you all sorts of information about the prison and the famous prisoners who were here as you walk the grounds.
3. Coffee Shops– I’ve talked about this so much on my blog and on my Instagram. I’m obsessed with finding the best coffee shops in the city. I dedicated a whole post HERE where I break down my favorites as well as where they are located in the city. IF you have time, bring your laptop, have a cup of coffee and a pastry. My hubby and I used to have coffee dates every weekend and it was the best! The yummy pastries here are from Mr. Holmes Bakehouse. The cruffins are out of this world!
4. Little Italy– The BEST Italian food! YUM! Our favorite pizza place was Tony’s and I still think about their pizza all the time LOL! They do not take reservations so I recommend doing an early lunch or early dinner, otherwise you will probably have to wait 2 hours for a table. It’s for sure worth the wait but it’s tough waiting that long when you have little ones. They also have a few other locations around the city called Slice House where the menu is more limited but you can grab a quick slice to go and you won’t have to wait that long. We used to go to the location in SOMA all the time!
5. Painted Ladies– The iconic houses from Full House! I couldn’t wait to see these the first time we went to SF to visit and once we moved there we went back quite a bit when we had friends and family in town. They sure are gorgeous to see and you have amazing view points of the city. Perfect picture op!
6. Marina District– This is one of my favorite neighborhoods in SF. The houses are all so beautiful with so much character. I would LOVE to live in one of these houses one day! From here it’s only a short walk to restaurants and boutiques and you also have a nice view of the Golden Gate Bridge from the park near by. This is one of my favorite picture spots in the city!
7. Baseball Game– If you’re in town a few days during baseball season I recommend catching a game! It’s so much fun! We took Olivia before we moved when my inlaws were in town and it was such a fun day! Make sure to bring a jacket for sure as the park is right on the water and it gets very windy and chilly. There are so many restaurants near by that you can make a full day of it!
8. Union Square– I know this is super touristy but if you are visiting you need to go. This is where most of the shopping is downtown. There’s a huge mall and a 5 story Nordstrom! The Nordstrom Cafe on the top floor has the best views! There are so many good stores all in walking distance and you can easily catch the cable car here and it takes you over the hill down to Fisherman’s Wharf. Make sure to have your camera ready!
9. Fisherman’s Wharf– This is another spot you need to see if you are visiting. It was fun to see once but VERY crowded and touristy. There are a ton of shops and restaurants and you can easily walk to Pier 39 and see all the sea lions! There are so many of them!
10. Delores Park– One of my favorite spots in the city! I recommend going during the week as the weekends get so crowded and it’s tough to find a spot. Bring a blanket and a picnic lunch and you’ll have the best day enjoying the views of the city. They have a nice playground too for the kids and a lot of people bring dogs too! It’s especially nice if the weather is warm.