1. The Golden Gate Bridge
The Golden Gate Bridge is an incredible sight. Declared a Wonder of the Modern World, The Bridge alone sees over 10 million visitors a year – and it’s easy to see why – it’s truly magnificent, whichever angle you look at it.
The Golden Gate Bridge is one of the most recognized symbols of San Francisco, and spans 1.6 kilometres. A good view of the Bridge can be found from multiple vantage points – one of them being from Alcatraz Island – next on the ‘must-see’ list.
2. Alcatraz Island & Penitentiary Tour
Alcatraz Island is roughly 2.5 kilometres from the shores of San Francisco. You can get there by boat, with multiple companies sending tourists over every day from the docks.
The Golden Gate Bridge can be seen both by boat and on the island – and if you manage to secure a night-tour of the penitentiary, you can watch the sunset over the Bridge.
Alcatraz holds many secrets and tales of daring escape attempts, having held many famous prisoners, including Al Capone. Walking through its walls and cells is slightly eerie, especially as night falls, however the interactive audio set you are given is incredibly fact-heavy and walks you through at your own pace.
It’s definitely worth seeing if you’re in the area – the history of such a place is definitely very interesting to learn about.
3. Fisherman’s Wharf
The Fisherman’s Wharf is a must-see while in San Francisco. There’s plenty to see and do, from shopping at the local market stalls, learning about the history of the area or getting some of the freshest seafood in the city.
Fisherman’s Wharf is close to public transport, the city and has plenty of car-parking. You can hire bikes, visit the old-school arcade or simply wonder along the waterfront. It’s close to the Aquarium of the Bay, Madame Tussaud’s Wax Museum and Ripley’s Believe-It-Or-Not Museum.
4. Lombard Street
Known as the ‘crookedest street’ in the world, Lombard Street has steep hills and curving corners that pass by some amazing Victorian Manors. The street is truly iconic and has amazing views.
Lombard Street attracts a large number of visitors every year, and provides a free, but very photogenic place to visit. It’s not far from the Fisherman’s Wharf and Union Square, so if you’re in the area, you may as well check Lombard Street out!
5. Cable Cars
The Cable Cars in San Francisco are the last manually operated Cable Cars in the world. There are only 3 left in the city, and are a delight to hop on.
You get some excellent views from the Cars, and all in all, it’s a (cheap) and fun experience. They run every 10 minutes or so, and can take you from Union Square to Nob Hill.
For the best views, don’t forget to choose the side of the car that will be closest facing to the bay!