Tomorrow by the Golden Gate?
January 5, 2018 7:59 PM   Subscribe

I just discovered that although I am currently in Davis, CA, I could very easily spend tomorrow in San Francisco! What shall I do?

I saw a previous thread about Dim Sum and would love to try Tom Kiang. This seems to put me in the Presedio and Golden Gate Park area. Can I do both? What else should I see in that area? Any other suggestions for things that are low-key but fun?

I’m normally a big museum goer but I think since this is such a spur of the moment thing I’d rather spend it getting to know the city a little bit more. Not interested in bars but wouldn’t mind a coffee house to crash in for a while . I am a solo female traveler, middle aged, relatively experienced in cities but currently residing in a small city and probably not be able to avoid looking touristy. I’d want to get back to Davis at a reasonable hour as I have to work the next day. Thanks!
posted by PussKillian to Travel & Transportation around San Francisco, CA (7 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Hike Land's End, near Tom Kiang and affords the best possible view of the Golden Gate bridge.
Stop by Trouble Coffee in the outer sunset for a unique coffee experience in a cool neighborhood.
Don't worry about looking like a tourist.
posted by garethspor at 8:10 PM on January 5, 2018 [4 favorites]

I visited the area about a month ago, so my recommendations are as a tourist and not as a local. Just FYI.

I second the Land's End hike. I started at Sutro Baths, which is a pretty spot also, and made my way east.

Andy Goldsworthy (nature sculptor) has a few pieces in the SF area, including Spire.

Palace of the Fine Arts is a pretty place to walk through. The scale of the buildings was bigger than I expected.

The Wave Organ is a sculptural piece that supposedly makes interesting sounds at high tide. The tide was too low when I visited, so I can't speak to whether it's worth the side trip. But the idea seemed cool.

If you're into quirky things, Musee Mecanique houses a ton of different old-timey arcade machines. Most are a quarter or two each to try. You can check out a lot of stuff for $5.

If you had the time/transportation, I'd recommend heading over the Golden Gate and into Marin Headlands. While it's a little less lush because it's winter, the coastal areas were pretty neat, like around Point Bonita Lighthouse/Battery Mendel. Also nearish here are Muir Woods, and if you've never had the chance to experience redwoods in a mossy/fern environment, I'd highly recommend.

I also had time to visit Oakland, and Berkley Bowl and UrbanOre were my favorite destinations. The former is a grocery store, known for its produce. I like to try fruits I've never had before. The latter is like a huge thrift store. I walked out with a small stack of books and a huge posable fuzzy spider for like $8. These two places are just a few blocks from each other.

When I travel, I'm drawn to the naturey stuff. Honestly, I enjoyed the spaces outside the city (Marin Headlands/Oakland) more than stuff in SF. YMMV. Regardless, I hope you have a great time whatever you choose to do!
posted by pdxhiker at 8:45 PM on January 5, 2018

Stu Dudley's San Francisco is the Fodors recommendation list, and it's pretty good. See also the Reddit /r/AskSF archive and FAQ.

San Francisco street crime is very prevalent. Do not leave anything in your automobile, not even in the trunk. Auto break-ins are up 28 percent this year, and still climbing.
posted by blob at 9:11 PM on January 5, 2018

Best answer: Agree with everyone about Land's End / Sutro Baths.

You could do:

1. Ton Kiang
2. Legion of Honor/Holocaust Memorial exteriors
3. Eastern edge of Lands End Trail to
4. Sutro Baths
5. Cliff House for a drink (crowded and overpriced but pretty views)
5. Japanese Tea Garden (has a tea house where you can get snacks and tea)
5. Nopalito (if you're hungry after all that walking, advantage is that you get to see a bit of The Haight, it'll be more commercial/urban, less residential than the rest of the route)

Hopefully this link to the route I just outlined on google maps will work
posted by mrmurbles at 9:56 PM on January 5, 2018 [1 favorite]

A friend of mine and I spent the day wandering around SF, and we had a lot of fun. Do you like South Indian food? Dosa in the Mission is great, or there's a smaller, less fancy but still awesome place called - I think - Udupi Palace a few doors down.
posted by Tamanna at 3:39 AM on January 6, 2018

Response by poster: Thanks for the great ideas everybody - I’m waiting to board my train now! Will report back.
posted by PussKillian at 9:25 AM on January 6, 2018 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Ate a mountain of awesome dim sum and then roamed the Legion of Honor and down into the trails, completely smitten by the perfect weather for rambling there and by the boom of the surf. Then headed over to Golden Gate Park where my resolve crumbled and I ended up in the De Young happily learning about Teotihuacan. Got a quick glimpse of ththe tea garden but it was closing soon so elected to come back some day when I could spend more time. A+ day would take AskMetafilter advice again.
posted by PussKillian at 7:04 PM on January 6, 2018 [2 favorites]

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