San Francisco

Even though San Francisco is only 47 square miles, the city has an astounding amount of attractions to visit and enough things to do to keep you entertained for more than just a few days. Whether you’re into museums, music, or dining, you will not be disappointed with your visit to the Golden Gate City!

It will take a full day to see all of San Francisco’s iconic attractions. If you are visiting for more than one or two days, there are many neighborhoods worth taking the time to explore not to mention plenty of incredible dining options.

If you are an outdoor/nature lover, make sure you add a day trip to Muir Woods State Park to see the towering Redwood trees. Other day trip idea’s you could add to your travel itinerary include Point Reyes National Seashore, Oakland or Napa Valley.

Top Attractions In San Francisco

What you can’t miss in San Francisco

Visiting San Francisco

San Francisco sits on the tip of a 32 mile long peninsula between San Francisco Bay to the east and the Pacific Ocean to the west. At the geographic center of the city you’ll find Twin Peaks where you can enjoy a bird’s eye view of the city. Other popular area’s to visit include the Fisherman’s Wharf, China Town, Russian Hill and the Mission District. You can learn more about each neighborhood below.

If you’re visiting San Francisco for the first time there are a handful of attractions that are iconic to the city that you should not miss. Obviously, the Golden Gate Bridge is at the top of this list. If you have time, be sure to walk across the entire length of the bridge for an up close inspection of this fantastic engineering achievement and for the marvelous views of San Francisco Bay. Alternatively you can rent bicycles to get across this three mile long bridge. If you are short on time you can view the bridge from Golden Gate Bridge Park which is situated on the southern side of the bridge.

Another can’t miss attraction located at Golden Gate Bridge Park is Fort Point. Fort Point was built in the mid-1800’s to defend San Francisco Bay during the Civil War. The building which is considered a National Historic Site has some of the most incredible and unique views of the Golden Gate Bridge.

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Getting To San Francisco

Getting To San Francisco By Air – The main airport in San Francisco is San Francisco International Airport which is located 14 miles south of downtown San Francisco. The trip between the airport and the downtown area is approximately 35 minutes. You should allow yourself an extra thirty minutes of travel time to/from the airport if you are traveling by car during peak hour traffic.

The Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) provides transport on electric trains between San Francisco Airport and San Francisco city. This is the best way to get to or from the airport as it is fast, inexpensive and allows you to avoid traffic. Look for signs to the AirTrain (a free tram service) and take the Blue or Red line to Garage G where you will find the BART station at International Terminal G. A one-way ticket from the airport to downtown San Francisco will cost $9.65.

Getting To San Francisco By Train – Amtrak has four routes connecting San Francisco to Chicago, Seattle, Los Angeles, Sacramento and the San Joaquin Valley. The California Zephyr runs between San Francisco and Chicago. Some of the stops along this route include Omaha, Denver, Salt Lake City and Oakland. The Coast Starlight runs between Los Angeles and Seattle. This route has stops in Portland, Eugene and Santa Barbara. The Capitol Corridor connects San Francisco with San Jose and Auburn, California. The San Joaquins service operates between San Francisco and Bakersfield with stops in Modesto, Merced and Fresno.

Muni – Muni is the name of San Francisco’s bus and rail system. Look out for bus stops and bus shelters or train stations around the city or download the app to find locations and schedules. You can also look up Muni routes and schedules online.

Cable Cars – San Francisco’s historic cable cars provide transport around the downtown area. The cars run on three different lines: Powell-Hyde (runs from Hallidie Plaza to Fisherman’s Wharf via Powell and Hyde Streets), Powell-Mason (runs from Hallidie Plaza to Fisherman’s Wharf via Powell and Mason Streets) and California Street (runs from Market Street to Van Ness Avenue via California Street). Exact change is required if you are purchasing tickets on board.

PresidiGo Shuttle – The​ PresidiGo Shuttle provides free transp​ort to an​d around the Presidio along three routes which operates seven days a week.

Rideshare – Uber and Lyft both offer their services in San Francisco. You can request a private pick up or a shared ride service for a discounted price.

CityPass – If you are visiting for more than one day consider purchasing a CityPASS which allows unlimited rides on the Muni and unlimited rides on cable cars for three days. The CityPass will also provide admission to top San Francisco attractions that include San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Aquarium of the Bay, California Academy of Science and a one hour cruise around San Francisco Bay.

Weather In San Francisco

San Francisco’s climate can be defined as ‘Mediterranean with cool summers’. Summer’s are unusually cool in San Francisco compared to the rest of California because of the cold current that flows along the coast causing the city’s infamous fog. September is the warmest month of the year with an average high of 69 degrees. January is the coldest time of year with an average temperature of 45 degrees.

Summer – Summer can be quite cool and foggy in San Francisco. On average it has some of the coldest daily temperatures in comparison to other major U.S. cities during the summer period. Towards the end of summer is when San Francisco experiences its warmest temperatures however it can still be foggy. Average temperatures in July range between 54 – 67 degrees.

Winter – Winters in San Francisco are cold (but not freezing) and when it rains the most. Average temperatures in January range between 47 – 58 degrees.

Spring – Spring is cool and slightly cold at night. Days become milder and can sometimes be warm with the rain beginning to decrease. Average temperatures in April range between 50 – 63 degrees.

Autumn – Autumn is usually still quite warm but begins to get colder and rainier towards the end of October. Average temperatures in October range between 55 – 70 degrees.

MONTHTEMP (MIN)TEMP (MAX)
JAN4555
FEB4661
MAR4863
APRIL4864
MAY5268
JUNE5472
JULY5572
AUG5573
SEPT5573
OCT5470
NOV4863
DEC4557
MONTHTEMP (MIN)TEMP (MAX)
JAN713
FEB816
MAR917
APRIL918
MAY1120
JUNE1222
JULY1322
AUG1323
SEPT1323
OCT1221
NOV917
DEC714

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