San Francisco 2011 (1 of 2)

It has taken me a long time to post these, but even a year later is better than never to post photos of my spring 2011 visit to San Francisco. This visit was my third and longest, and images of The City are still stuck in my mind. In my next couple posts, I will share some of favourite new photos of this city, adding to the ones I posted before.

Neiman Marcus is one of the many shopping destinations for tourists, and it provides a beautiful view of Union Square through its windows.

San Francisco’s streets are full of characters, and small shops everywhere. In each visit, I’ve found it quite enjoyable to just walk around with no particular destination in mind.

A sculpture outside the science centre in Golden Gate Park.

I caught a relaxing glimpse of a toad at the Aquarium on Fisherman’s Wharf.

San Francisco is a city known for its hills and expensive real estate. This view is very familiar to tourists looking out from the Pier 39 area. Note that street cars comprise the primary transportation method to this area, not buses or subways (though the stops for those aren’t too far away either).

These houses seem to lean when making the very steep Telegraph Hill seem straight. There’s quite a dramatic difference between the left and right sides of the houses.

The Bay Bridge, palm trees, and old buildings make another unique street view. Palm trees are not native to SF. They have been shipped from elsewhere and quite expensively too. Each tree cost, on average, $3,000-10,000.

Coit Tower overlooks many of the city’s neighbourhoods, with the Bay Bridge again in the background. The weather looks fine here, though it was quite windy and cold during most of this visit for me. Some areas of San Francisco which I didn’t visit apparently have harsh microclimates with colder temperatures and less sunshine than other parts of the city.

Evening begins to fall as a cable car prepares for its run. Sadly, San Francisco has fewer cable cars than it used to, but it has successfully resisted attempts to remove them entirely over the years. The forward-thinking minds of decades ago noted that tourists visiting the city don’t come to ride the buses. Friedel Klussmann was the resident who led the protest to protect the cable cars as they were going to shut down. This is just one example of locals contributing to the city. Coit tower is another example, which was built at the request of Lillie Hitchcock Coit who left one third of her estate to the city.

My trip also took me to wine country in the Napa Valley which comprises hundreds of small wineries.

The tours covered every step of the wine making process, including wine tasting samples.

Please check back soon for more photos from my San Francisco visit.

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