6 Things To Do in 6 Hours: San Francisco

After a couple of days touring the wine country, I headed back down to spend the day touring San Francisco. With only 6 hours available before heading to the airport to catch a red-eye flight home, I had to be very selective about what I wanted in a city with so much to see and do. The itinerary was a bit ambitious and at times felt like a treasure hunt, but it was definitely a lot of fun and gave me a distinct and varied set of experiences.

Although these attractions may not be on everybody’s list, here are my top 6 things to do in San Francisco (in chronological order):

1. Muir Woods National Monument

Muir Woods was declared a national monument in 1908 by Theodore Roosevelt in order to preserve this stretch of hundreds of years old redwoods from demolition and destruction by the logging industry. Named after the famous conservationist John Muir, Muir declared the woods “… the best tree-lovers monument that could possibly be found in all the forests of the world.” Several scenic trails wind through the ancient redwoods, gathering places, rustic structures, and memorials making for a pleasant and relaxing nature walk. For those with more time, it is also recommended to take the Dipsea Trail to Stinson Beach for a spectacular panoramic ocean view.

2. Seaside Lunch in Sausalito

Sausalito is a picturesque bayside town with a variety of activities on offer from browsing through the quaint shops and various art galleries, hiking nearby Mt. Tamalpais, taking a sailing trip, cycling, or lounging on the beach. With only an hour or so to spare, we headed straight to Scoma’s for a seafood lunch overlooking the bay to Alcatraz and downtown San Francisco. The lobster and crab stuffed sole and the view were outstanding!

3. Iconic Photo of the Golden Gate Bridge

A visit to San Francisco would be incomplete without a photo of the infamous Golden Gate Bridge. Be sure to take the drive (or walk if you’re ambitious and have the energy) up Conzelman Road on the north side where there are several scenic overlooks from which to catch a shot.

Golden Gate Bridge

4. Balmy Alley Street Murals, Mission District

I love art. So whenever I can I like to head over to a town’s art district, markets, and galleries. In San Francisco, Balmy Alley in the Mission District features the local’s gritty and colorful street art that began in response to the political and human rights abuses that took place in Central America. The alley (and the rest of the district) is a living gallery and changes as new murals continuously appear, adding a unique flavor and culture to this increasingly gentrified and trendy area.

Click to enlarge and view slideshow

5. Lombard Street

This beautiful one block twisty stretch of Lombard Street is known as the “crookedest street in the world”. Paved with red brick and lined with beautiful blooms and gorgeous homes, it makes for an interesting drive down!

lombard street

6. Pier 39 at Fisherman’s Wharf

I am not really of a fan of the cheesy and touristy seaside piers. I don’t like the bright lights and crowds, arcade and fairground noises, or super sweet and super fried foods. But I did want to see the sea lions at Pier 39 along Fisherman’s Wharf. Unfortunately, with such a whirlwind day planned, it was getting dark by the time I arrived and I couldn’t get the best view. Nevertheless, it was worth a visit and a perfect ending to a perfect (and exhausting!) day.

sea lions pier 39

What are your top choices of things to do and see in San Francisco?

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8 thoughts on “6 Things To Do in 6 Hours: San Francisco

    • adelicia says:

      Comments = blogger feed 😉 I loved Sausalito and would have loved to sail around the bay and can see why it’s your favorite area. And dang, that place looks cool! Should have asked you before I went. Next time definitely.

  1. Emily Sabo (@Emily_for_real) says:

    Muir Woods National Monument looks so neat! We were only in San Francisco for an afternoon/evening so just did a lot of wandering but not well planned out. We wanted to check out the famous painted ladies but happened to miss out, so we will certainly be making another stop out that way!

    • adelicia says:

      Thank you for stopping by! Muir Woods was beautiful but really deserves a full day to appreciate it all. The Painted Ladies is another thing I would like to have seen. At a minimum, I think you need a full weekend to see the best of San Francisco and it’s definitely a city worth more than one visit. Hope you make it back soon!

  2. Alison says:

    You certainly made the most of your short time in the Bay area. What a beautiful city San Francisco is, and your photographs show off some of its best assets. Well done!

    • adelicia says:

      Thank you! San Francisco is definitely a beautiful and interesting city and one that I think I’d be happy to live in if it wasn’t so darn expensive! Guess you have to pay for such beauty though.

    • adelicia says:

      Admittedly it was a rush and we didn’t get much time at each location. It would be nice to go back and spend more time to properly explore. But it was enough to get a little of the flavor.

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