TipUnited States of America
San Francisco is the cultural, commercial and financial center of Northern California. If you only have 24 hours to spend in this fun and exciting city we want to help you make the most of your time. Check out our list of fun things to do in San Francisco.
Walk the Golden Gate Bridge
The Golden Gate Bridge is an iconic structure connecting the city of San Francisco to Marin County California. The Bridge spreads for almost two miles across the Golden Gate. The Golden Gate, constructed in 1933, stemmed from the desire to connect San Francisco to its northern neighbours. Since the Golden Gate opened to the public in 1937 it is recognized as an engineering marvel in addition to also being a picture-perfect landmark. With an average of 259 sunny days per year in San Francisco the probability that you will be in San Francisco on a bright day is high.
Ride a cable car
Since the late 19th century cable cars have been used to transport people around San Francisco. The San Francisco cable car system is the world's last manually operated cable car. The cars run on tracks and are moved by an underground cable on three routes. They have an iconic and familiar bell which can be heard ringing from blocks away. Tickets can be purchased from a cable car conductor for 7 USD (3.5 EUR, 3 GBP). You can also purchase your ticket at ticket booths near the cable car lines. Be ready for spectacular views of the city's celebrated hills as well as exhilarating transportation.
Visit the "Rock"
Alcatraz Federal Penitentiary was a maximum high-security federal prison on Alcatraz Island which operated from 1934 to 1963. Some of the United States most notorious criminals were incarcerated here and although several tried to escape, no inmate ever made a successful escape from the famous "Rock". Recorded prison tours are available allowing visitors to learn about the prison as they explore the buildings and grounds. To reach the island you must take a ferry from Pier 33. Making a booking in advance is always recommended as this place is popular amongst tourists.
See some sea lions
Pier 39, a festive waterfront marketplace, is located on Fisherman's Wharf. A community of sea lions has now settled in the Pier 39 Marina and visitors queue to see their antics. California sea lions are known for their intelligence, playfulness and noisy barking. They are also protected by the Marine Mammal Protection Act so it is unlawful for unauthorized persons to feed, handle or harass them. From Pier 39 it is a short walk to San Francisco's Dungeons and Madame Tussauds. Here you will encounter the historic Boudin Bakery and multiple favorite food options including famous crab vendors.
Shop in Union Square
Union Square, San Francisco, is the United States' third largest shopping area. Union Square became San Francisco's shopping epicenter in the early 1900s and today upscale stores and hotels surround Union Square. Union Square is the place for serious shoppers with major department stores and the most exclusive designer boutiques line the streets. Some popular ones are Post, Sutter, Geary, Grant, Stockton and Powell.