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San Francisco Vibrant city with many highlights

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San Francisco

San Francisco Vibrant city with many highlights

SF is known for its open character, Victorian architecture, hilly landscape, and cultural diversity. It is a wonderful city to walk through, enjoy the sea air and you can mark a lot of points off your bucket list.

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San Franciscois also called the most liberal city in the United States. Everyone is welcome and nothing is too crazy. You can eat, drink and go out fantastic, but there is also a lot to see. Grab a bite to eat in Chinatown, cycle across the Golden Gate Bridge, and definitely take a ride on an old cable car. San Francisco will no doubt charm you.

San Francisco Vibrant city with many highlights

 

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Golden Gate Bridge

To the northwest of the city is the iconic Golden Gate Bridge. This bright orange suspension bridge is the symbol of San Francisco and an ingenious feat of engineering. The bridge is nearly two kilometers long and connects the city with northern Marin County. A popular way to explore the bridge is by two-wheeler. You can cycle on both sides, and you have fantastic views of the city and the bay along the way. Also visit the nearby Golden Gate Park, a beautiful green city park.

Alcatraz Island
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Alcatraz Island

Just off the coast of San Francisco is tiny Alcatraz Island. From 1934 to 1963, this was a prison that held the most serious criminals in the United States. The prison was closely guarded and escape was impossible, although several prisoners tried to do so. Alcatraz’s most notorious prisoner was mafia boss Al Capone, who was imprisoned here for 4.5 years. Today Alcatraz is a museum and you can get guided tours of the cells.

 

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Cable car

The manual cable cars are a well-known attraction in San Francisco. Traditionally, they were pulled over the steep hills by horses, but in the 19th-century horsepower was replaced by a system of cables. At the height of the tram era, hundreds of trams ran through the city, but in recent decades many of them have been replaced by buses. Today there are three more tram lines in use: the Powell-Mason line, the Powell-Hyde line, and the California line. All three pass a number of well-known sights.

 

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Chinatown

In the 19th century, San Francisco was overrun by Chinese migrants. A large Chinese community with its own restaurants, shops, and temples arose within the city limits. Chinatown has now become one of the city’s most popular attractions. The entrance is marked by an enormous Chinese entrance gate, the streets are lit by red lanterns, signboards are decorated with Chinese characters, and the buildings are fitted with pagoda roofs here and there. You imagine yourself here in Asia.

 

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Lombard Street

San Francisco is built on 43 hills, and it shows. Take Russian Hill for example. The top between Hyde and Leavenworth Street is so steep that it is too dangerous for cars to drive down a straight road. The city council, therefore, decided to build a winding one-way road. Thanks to the eight sharp hairpin bends on Lombard Street, drivers can now drive down without any problems, and that is always nice to see.

 

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Alamo Square

San Francisco’s most photographed buildings are the so-called ‘painted ladies’. These colorful Victorian houses are located on Alamo Square, a beautiful green park on top of a hill. From here you can see large parts of the city, and the view of the beautiful houses and the backyard business district is world-famous.

 

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Fisherman’s wharf

Fisherman’s Wharf is San Francisco’s old sailors’ neighborhood, and today one of the city’s most vibrant spots. For years this has been the place where the fishing boats dock and sell their catch of the day. It is a lively area full of seafood restaurants and shops. The yard is also very popular among a colony of sea lions. Every winter since the 1989 earthquake, hundreds of sea lions swim to this part of the city to settle on the pontoons. Here they have shelter from strong currents and natural enemies. The sea lions and their intense roars are a beloved San Francisco attraction.

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Union Square

Union Square is San Francisco’s central square and the city’s main shopping area. In the streets around the square, you will find well-known chain stores, boutiques, and souvenir stalls. In addition, here is the theater district of San Francisco, with dozens of theaters, cinemas, and cultural centers. The square itself is also a nice place to be because when the weather is nice it is full of terraces.

Getting to San Francisco – How to Get There?

The journey from Amsterdam to San Francisco takes approximately 11 hours. KLM and Delta Airlines have direct connections to the city, and the price for a direct return ticket starts at € 800. It is usually cheaper to transfer somewhere, but it will take you a lot longer.

It is then only a short distance from the airport to the city. There are buses and taxis, but the airport also has an excellent direct train connection to the city.

Once in San Francisco, public transport is very well organized. There are metros, trams, and trolleybuses that take you to your desired destination in a short time.

San Francisco Vibrant city with many highlights

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