Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Vacay to SF: Epic Sightseeing Adventure

Since this was our last day in San Francisco we decided to book a sightseeing tour. While I was napping yesterday Ms. Pool Shark found a tour that hit most of the highlights we wanted to see as well as a ferry ride so we could see the city from the water’s perspective. Sadly the tour time was 8:30AM, not exactly our favorite time of the morning, too early! We had to get up, pack, eat, get ready and get downtown in rush hour. With our taste testing from yesterday we knew exactly what we wanted for breakfast. For me the Bagel with cream cheese framage, bacon, hash browns and a bowl of the yummy strawberries.


With a bit of scrambling we managed to get parked and get to the correct pier just in time for our tour to leave. Our guide, Molly, was super duper adorable. A good guide can really make or break a tour experience and she was fantastically fun and knowledgeable.




We stopped at the oh so famous, steep one-block section that consists of eight tight hairpin turns, Lombard street.


We saw the now retired Alcatraz from the hilly mountainous suburbs.


We got to stop quickly to take a peek at the Grace Cathedral with the replicas of Ghiberti’s bronze ‘Doors of Paradise’.




We stopped at the trolley car museum and had fun reading about the history and how trolley cars in San Francisco still work on the old steam system.



We took a walk through China Town and learned a little of the history of how San Francisco was built.


We stopped to see the seven Victorian houses otherwise known as the painted ladies.


We spent 15 minutes exploring the Palace of Fine Arts originally constructed as a temporary structure for the 1915 Exposition and then rebuilt in 1965 to exhibit works of art. I think this was one of my favorite stops. The buildings were beautiful. I loved all the water and fountains AND I got to see a nesting Mute Swan!





Finally we made it to one of the lookout points to see the Golden Gate Bridge. What I didn’t realize the last time I was out on this lookout point is that you can also see a fantastic arial shot of the hotel we stayed at.




Our last stop was a sleepy little town about 15 minutes south of the bridge. Here we were let loose to get some lunch before taking the 45 minute ferry ride back to our starting point down town. Our guide gave us numerous suggestions for lunch, our top priority was to get something to eat right on the water. Although our food wasn’t the best, the fact that we were sitting and resting, our icy cold beverages and our view more than made up for it.


Besides if lunch isn’t fantastic there is always ice cream to make you feel better!


The ferry ride offered more fantastic views of the city. We were both really thirsty but realized that the on-boat bar only took cash, which we were sadly short in. The sweet bartender gave Ms. Pool Shark our drinks anyways for free, because we ROCK, and she ROCKS and sometimes you meet fabulous people that ROCK together. That bartender really made our day and made this dehydrated pregnant lady very happy!



We got back to the dock and walked out with our guide who also helped us validate our parking. We had such a great time on this tour.


Technically we were planning on heading home right after the tour but then we decided to stay one more day. After all we were so close to the Coastal Redwood Forest and there was still plenty to see tonight in the city. We checked in at a cheap Super 8, snuck in a nap and then headed to the famous Fisherman’s Warf. We walked around until sunset, and then followed the Salty sign to the Oh So Noisy California Sea Lions. They were crowded on platforms, some were resting but most were balling or fighting or playing or just being loud. I have seen them in singles but never in a large group like this.





Finally we headed to North Beach for dinner at Vicoletto where I got the Gnocchi. Ms. Pool Shark ordered Pork Chops and we had a nice long discussion about her Rabe. We were curious, it looked like broccoli but then there were parts that didn’t. We both love looking things up and sometimes dramatically debating our finds.




That discussion lead us somehow to the Cheesecake Factory Menu where Ms. Pool Shark looked up the name of her favorite dish and accidentally stumbled onto how many calories that dish has. Her shocked face was PRICELESS, not sure if she is going to ever be able to get her favorite dish with a clear conscious again!



paul peggy zeus said...

Ms Pool Shark: There are some things worth not knowing! lol. LOVED the Palace of fine arts, but it wasn't open on Monday when we visited last. That shot with your hair straight up, priceless!!

Inzodda said...

We are hilarious together! I am just getting around to reading some of these blogs about our adventures together now. Ahhhh, the memories we make. Love you!

^I hear ya!

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