I surprised myself with how easily I scribbled (okay, typed?) down these notes for my awesome coworker last week! We were rapping about weekend plans, it was going to be a beautiful couple of days in the Bay after all. I encouraged her to explore SF since she hadn’t gotten around to much sight seeing since moving to Berkeley only a few months ago and since then being totally consumed with moving and other fun logistics. Figured I’d share some insider scoops, especially fun day trips for anyone coming from the East Bay or near a Bart Station, enjoy!
1. Take Bart from B-town (Bizzerkley or Berkeley for short) to SF’s Civic Center prepped to go for a few miles run! Run up Market until it turns into Haight after you pass Gough. It goes uphill for a bit but enjoy the view! Keep going all the way thru my hood and into Haight Ashbury where the hippies jam out. At the end you’ll hit Haight – run thru Golden Gate Park, check out the arboretum and palace of flowers it’s so beautiful. Instead of running along Haight if u want when u get to Masonic you can turn right and run thru the Panhandle park which is cool. Beautiful Victorians everywhere! If I moved back some day I’d wanna live there. Run straight to golden gate park, can’t miss it. Academy of Sciences and De Young museum are all situated near the Japanese Tea Garden too – very cool to stop in or make a day trip out of it; there’s certainly a ton to see.
If you keep running you’ll eventually hit Ocean Beach – it’s just a mile or two away from the museums! Look for the windmill! To the far right you’ll see the Cliff House and to the left is Judah – over there is the Java Beach House Cafe where you should totally get a sandwich!!! You can take the N Judah muni train back towards downtown..hop off at 9th and Judah to check out my middle school neighborhood, lots of cute stuff going on! Stay on the train to get back downtown or hop off at Carl to walk back thru the Haight: cute shops and restaurants everywhere. You can eventually get back to Bart either via bus on Haight or staying on the N train.
2. Another favorite is to take Bart to Glen Park. Go over there hungry to get a burrito at La Coroneta seriously the BEST!! Walk to Glen Park (the actual park, not the neighborhood) and check out the canyon. Not many people know about it but there’s a legit huge park with rock climbing and epic hiking right in the middle of the city – we used to party there when I was in high school, it was EPIC. Afterwards walk back towards Mission Street to check out some fun thrifting and more delicious food, you’re not too far from the heart of it all. Walk from 30th and mission to San Jose Blvd for FAMOUS Mitchell’s ice cream it’s worth the wait and it’s been a SF staple since the 40s maybe earlier. You can take the J church train back to Bart or downtown too.
3. Another fave urban hike is taking any above ground bus (6, 7 or 71) once u get off Bart from downtown to Fillmore street, then take the 22 and get off anywhere you think looks cool (heading towards Marina). I’d recommend hopping off at California street and walking up the hill..you’ll see epic hills and amazing views and huge mansions (this is by where I went to high school).
You can keep walking thru Pacific Heights, Cow Hollow (there really used to be cows there!) and the Marina: walk all the way to get to the Marina Green with Chrissy field situated to the left and the beautiful Park Presidio to the right. Take a right to wrap around the Marina till eventually you’re hitting up Fishermans Wharf.
Look towards the cable car turn around till you hit Broadway and take that down towards North Beach and Chinetown. Hungry for a delicious snack? MELT cafe is cute and has good drinks and snacks and sometimes live jazz. Washington Square Park is also on the way – so beautiful and across from the church on Filbert where Marilyn Monroe and joe DiMaggio were married.
You can see Lombard street and it’s famous curves from here too – look west. Oh and best pizza ever isn’t too far – North Beach or Golden Boy are old time faves. Keep walking south to get to Chinatown where Grant meets Columbus I think..then all the way to Market and Powell street Bart.