Monday, August 26, 2013

San Francisco: the Sights

The Bridge from a lookout in Presidio National Park
It turns out that to see the Golden Gate Bridge the best place actually isn't Golden Gate Park (which would have been my guess). The better view (besides physically crossing the Bridge) is in the Presidio. FYI. Because who knew?

The Presidio is home to several small museums, including a Walt Disney museum, and a fort. When we went there seemed to be some construction going on, and I had not worn the right shoes for a hike, so we didn't get to see as much as I would have liked.

In Golden Gate Park there is a museum called the California Academy of Sciences. It was so cool! My husband and I spent most of an afternoon there and we didn't regret it. It has an awesome aquarium, an earthquake simulator, a three story rainforest exhibit, an African wing, and more. I'd never seen an albino alligator before, but they had one of those too.

At the Pier, we got the full tourist blast. It wasn't really our thing, especially since we live in Orlando and we can go to CityWalk or Downtown Disney anytime and get the same over-commercialization and crowds.
That's Alcatraz. Waaaaaay over there.

However, it was neat to see Alcatraz from the Pier. Ticket were sold out three weeks ahead of time. Yikes! So we didn't get the tour, just a distant pic.
Can you see those seals? There were tons hanging out on the Pier.

The Aquarium at the Pier was neat, but not as neat as the one at the Academy of Sciences. It has more sharks, and some otters, but otherwise it offers less variety, space, maintenance and cleanliness. Go if you won't get to Golden Gate Park, but if it's a choice between the two I'd suggest the Academy of Sciences.
I did get some awesome pics of jellyfish...

...and starfish.

Chinatown was neat to walk through. If you're interested in Chinese-American culture or food it's worth the visit. I mostly wanted to see the gate and window shop.
There's the gate to Chinatown.

For a quieter moment, Yerba Buena was a nice park to hang out in. There's plenty to do in a short walk of the park, including a contemporary Jewish museum, but the park itself is a pretty place to relax.
A neat visual juxtaposition near Yerba Buena

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