Nau­ti­cal but nice

So much more to do in San Fran than wear flow­ers in your hair

Sunshine Coast Daily - Caloundra Weekly - - FIND A - Greg Dawkins The writer was a guest of ↘ Sam­sung at the 2017 Sam­sung De­vel­oper Con­fer­ence.

San Fran­cisco is the must-see city for trav­ellers to the United States. The 7x7, which the city is dubbed as it mea­sures seven miles by seven miles, packs a lot of punch.

This makes get­ting around the city easy, even with all the hills.

Ma­jor tourist at­trac­tions, highly rated restau­rants, and plenty of shop­ping op­por­tu­ni­ties are in walk­ing dis­tance.

Ca­ble cars and bikes are al­ter­na­tives for those not up for a walk.

New York might be higher on peo­ple’s bucket lists, but even a lay­over to break up that bru­tal ad­di­tional travel time to the east coast is worth con­sid­er­ing.

The big-ticket items – Al­ca­traz Is­land tour, Golden Gate bridge, ca­ble cars, Pier 39 and Lom­bard Street – could be packed into a day or at a more re­laxed pace over two.

After the big boxes are ticked, San Fran­cisco still has plenty more to of­fer in­clud­ing some sur­prises.

My trip was busi­ness but I was de­ter­mined to mix in some tourist time, so I spent a day walk­ing to, and eat­ing my way around, the sites.

After check­ing in at Pier 2620 Ho­tel with its nau­ti­cal

theme I felt like I was in San Fran­cisco as op­posed to a chain ho­tel.

It was an easy walk to the fa­mous Fish­er­man’s Wharf sign, with two fan­tas­tic photo op­por­tu­ni­ties in a mat­ter of min­utes.

Be­fore head­ing to Pier 39 I stum­bled across a charm­ing mu­seum while I was tak­ing in the area bustling with tourists, sounds of buskers and the fresh breeze com­ing off the bay.

It was a step back into his­tory at the Musee Me­canique, where I found yes­ter­year’s ar­cade games, mostly in orig­i­nal work­ing con­di­tion.

With for­tune teller ma­chines that re­minded me of the movie Big, to more modern (un­til I re­alised it has been a while since I was a kid) video ar­cade games, it was an un­ex­pected trip down mem­ory lane.

I had heard the clam chow­der soup in a sour­dough bread bowl was a thing.

Pos­si­bly a touristy thing but def­i­nitely a thing.

After check­ing out the sea lions at Pier 39, I had my lunch at Chow­ders that claim to have the orig­i­nal sour­dough bread bowl – and took in the view of Al­ca­traz. Next stop was the

Ghi­rardelli Cho­co­late Shop (an­other orig­i­nal).

So much cho­co­late good­ness and if I had not earned it al­ready I was about to earn the hot fudge sun­dae.

From there catch a ca­ble car up to Lom­bard Street – the most crooked street in the world.

I de­cided to walk up it – how hard could it be? It’s steep and got the heart rate up.

There are a lot of chain restau­rants but the city has so many other op­tions from Ital­ian, Chi­nese, Mex­i­can and new Amer­i­can to choose from. There was one ex­cep­tion. My Amer­i­can friend in­sisted I try the west coast burger joint In-N-Out Burger.

Or­der like a lo­cal and get the dou­ble-dou­ble with an­i­mal fries (like loaded chips, they are not of­fi­cially on the menu but still up for grabs for those in the know) and a shake. For a night­cap head to The Buena Vista, a quaint bar with a mix­ture of lo­cals and tourists. The Ir­ish cof­fee was the per­fect end to an en­joy­able day.

PHOTO: ISTOCK

SAN FRAN SIGHTS: A vin­tage street­car rolls by the en­trance to Fish­er­man’s Wharf.

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