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Top 10 Things to See in San Francisco

Written by: Catalogs.com Editorial Staff

April 10, 2012
Filed Under Places 

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A list of the top ten things to see in San FranciscoContributed by Aurora LaJambre, Catalogs.com Top 10 Guru

San Francisco is on the top of many must-see travel lists throughout the world, and for good reason.

From the Golden Gate Bridge and Alcatraz, to the ferry building marketplace, this beautiful city has many sights to see. San Franciscans live in the second most populated city in the United States, but they’re among the friendliest people you’ll meet.

Assume the forecast calls for fog and clouds. Layer up your clothing and check out these top ten things to see in San Francisco.


10. Fisherman’s Wharf

A list of the top ten things to see in San Francisco

To get a feel or San Francisco’s cultural history, stop by Fisherman’s Wharf. During the gold Rush era, hardworking immigrants who failed to find a fortune underground found it in the sea and built many of the area restaurants standing nearby today. Wear layers of comfortable clothing so you don’t catch a chill.

9. The Mission District

A list of the top ten things to see in San Francisco

Every great trip calls for some down time. The Mission District is a perfect neighborhood for strolling and admiring the street murals of past residents. Mission District is among the best San Francisco shopping, too. While the area demographic is rapidly changing, you can still find a dreamy array of cuisines to choose from, including the must-have burrito. The New York Times has this handy 36-hour guide to food and entertainment in the Mission District.

8. Chinatown

A list of the top ten things to see in San Francisco

San Francisco’s is the biggest Chinatown outside of Asia. Between tasty dumpling hopping, take a walking tour to hear the stories behind the daily hustle bustle, stop by the Fortune Cookie Factory and peruse the many small shops and open air markets filled with colorful souvenirs.

7. Ferry Building Marketplace

A list of the top ten things to see in San Francisco

The Ferry Building Marketplace is a foodie’s paradise. The best time to go is Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday when you’re super hungry. Pick up some produce, fresh cheese, pastries, gourmet treats and other picnic treats and head to a bench by the water to enjoy.

6. Exploratorium

A list of the top ten things to see in San Francisco

Rated the best science museum in the world by Scientific American magazine, the Exploratorium offers hundreds of hands-on science exhibits. This is a great place for families to spend a rainy afternoon. This place is a playground for kids and curious adults alike. And don’t miss the opportunity to touch a tornado!

5. Alcatraz Island

A list of the top ten things to see in San Francisco

Also referred to as The Rock, Alcatraz Island is situated in the heart of the San Francisco Bay. The island was home to a maximum security prison from 1934- to 1964. Al Capone, George “Machine Gun” Kelly and other infamous criminals spent time here, and now you can, too! The National Park Service now offer several tours around the island. Prepare for some of the most breathtaking views of the city you can find, and wear a waterproof jacket and sturdy shoes.

4. Golden Gate Park

A list of the top ten things to see in San Francisco

You can learn a lot about a city by wandering through its parks. Golden Gate Park is filled with trails and vegetation. Continue east towards Ocean Beach Park for unforgettable views of the Pacific Ocean and three miles of open beach. Before heading out on this trek, stop by one of the San Francisco’s clothing stores for something warm and stylish.

3. San Francisco

A list of the top ten things to see in San Francisco

The best way to get oriented in San Francisco is to take a double-decker tour around the city. You’ll see neighborhoods you may not have time to visit on foot, learn some historic trivia and see the city’s most iconic sites from the best vantage points without spending the energy to climb up San Fran’s many hills. Many of the tour buses depart from Union Square, and offer competitive discounts if you ask. Where something warm and keep your camera ready.

2. Cable Car Ride

A list of the top ten things to see in San Francisco

The cable cars are an iconic symbol, and among the top things to see in San Francisco. There are three cable lines to choose from, including one to Fisherman’s Wharf. The cable cars are moved by cables beneath the street and about 9-½ mph. If you fall in love, head to the free Cable Car Museum to learn everything there’s to know about its history.

1. Golden Gate Bridge

A list of the top ten things to see in San Francisco

Don’t settle for the pictures of the Golden Gate Bridge you see in the movies. The bridge is non-negotiable on the sight-seeing list. No one will believe you were there if you don’t come back with a picture of the bridge in all its glory. You can ride over on one of the city’s many double-decker buses or cross the sidewalks on foot or by bike.

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