New Year's Day in San Francisco
November 27, 2013 10:11 AM   Subscribe

I'm spending New Year's in San Francisco so my partner and I can get married (no gay marriage allowed in Montana, so we're headed to the home state of both our families). We plan to be there with our parents and siblings for the event, but are not sure what to do with ourselves on the day of the 1st.

Seems like a lot of the standard fare (like museums and shops) will probably be closed for the holiday. Any ideas on what might be open on this day? We like to do things outdoors like hiking and beachcombing, but will have members of our group who aren't as vigorous or mobile as others (i.e. no climbing Mt. Tam), so indoor activity suggestions are appreciated as well. We'll have a 12-year old in tow as well, so kid-friendly venues are an option, too.
posted by ikahime to Travel & Transportation around San Francisco, CA (9 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Not in SF, but the Tilden Park Steam Trains and Merry-Go-Round will be open on Jan 1. Fun for all ages! Add an easy walk around Lake Anza, take in the view at the Lawrence Hall of Science, and you have a nice day out.
posted by TDIpod at 10:34 AM on November 27, 2013 [1 favorite]

Mazel-Tov! How exciting!

The Exploratorium at Pier 15 might be an option (they explicitly say they're open on the 30th, but no info on New Year's Day.)

Chinatown is ALWAYS open. Dim Sum might be a fun thing for you to do. Or, just old-school Cantonese, my favorite place is Woey Loy Goey, but that's mostly from sentiment (I've been eating there since I was four years old.)

Most of the stores will be open with some really good sales, so if there are shoppers in your pack, that can be a thing.

If you hit Macy's on Union Square, check out Burger Bar. Hubert Keller's joint. Really yummy burgers!

The Hop-On-Hop-Off tour can be fun. If you don't hop on or off, it takes 75 minutes, but you can get off in Chinatown, check that out, then get back on the bus, etc. Seems like a pretty good way to hit the high points and check out the neighborhoods.

Movies will be open, so if anyone seems like they need to rest. The Castro is a gorgeous old-fashioned movie theater and I love seeing movies in the deluxe surroundings. It's Breakfast at Tiffany's on the 1st. There used to be a beautiful theater on Clement street too, but I think it only shows Chinese movies now.

Any of that appeal?
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 10:37 AM on November 27, 2013

Chinese food is traditional on the first. Dim Sum?
posted by small_ruminant at 10:43 AM on November 27, 2013

Since you will be celebrating the first day of the first year of your lives as a married couple I suggest you send your families and children away to one of the many suggested outings above while you and you partner stay together in your hotel room and have lots of sex.
posted by elizardbits at 10:49 AM on November 27, 2013 [2 favorites]

If y'all are football fans, hit my memail and I'll give you the address of a bar/restaurant where you can (i) eat, (ii) drink, (iii) be merry, (iv) watch some sports, and (v) be absolutely celebrated by the staff & regulars--we love weddings and are all so excited that same sex marriages are finally legal.
posted by janey47 at 10:52 AM on November 27, 2013

Response by poster: Elizardbits - we're doing the deed on the 2nd, so it will actually be the last day as "single ladies." But yes, point noted.
Thanks for ideas so far! Good ones, and keep em coming.
posted by ikahime at 1:09 PM on November 27, 2013

Seconding dim sum, Ton Kiang would be my recommendation. Not in Chinatown but my favorite sim sum in the city for value, quality, and variety. They open at 9:30 on New Years Day and you need to get there early or you'll end up waiting a really long time to get seated. Then I would head out to Golden Gate Bridge, park on one side or the other and get out and walk onto the bridge, all the way to the middle if people are up for it. Hop back into your car and drive to the north side of the bridge and up the hill toward the Marin Headlands. Unless its completely socked in, the views from up there - and the photo ops - can't be beat. Then head into Sausalito for a coffee at Caffe Trieste or any of the other little cafes/bakeries. Of course, you might want to check before to see what's open, but just driving around and enjoying the view would the drive. Chinatown would be fun, too, and not necessarily mutually exclusive to the bridge/Marin Headlands trip.
posted by ms_rasclark at 3:14 PM on November 27, 2013

I always recommend the free walking tours given by San Francisco City Guides. They're wonderfully informative and lots of fun. (Donations are accepted if you're so inclined.)

On January 1, you could take: Congratulations on your wedding! I hope you have a lovely time in San Francisco!

posted by kristi at 12:58 PM on November 30, 2013

Response by poster: Thanks all! We ended up heading to Chinatown, having dim sum at Good Mong Kok, and avoiding the crowds at the base of the hill by riding the trolley down. All were pleased and it was a great day for our variably mobile group. My partner and I successfully got hitched the next day at City Hall and hope to get back to SF sometime soon (by ourselves) to take advantage of all the other things y'all suggested. Thanks again!
posted by ikahime at 9:25 AM on January 10, 2014 [1 favorite]

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