Solo Travelling in San Francisco

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A must visit when you’re in the Bay Area, San Francisco (SF) is a charming city with a character of its own. From the unique architecture of the city to the various attractions available, it’s a perfect spot for a long weekend getaway from school.

Night Views in SF

 

A bustling city with a fairly good public transport system, there are 4 main ways to travel in San Francisco:

    1. Walk: Albeit tiring, walking through the city from one destination to another is a great way to sightsee. Having been blessed with good weather, clear skies and cool sea breeze, walking through the city allows you to take in the different sights around you and enjoy the ambience of the city.
    2. Public transport: A hilly city, taking the MUNI buses or BART trains in the city is a convenient way to travel, especially if you’re tired from climbing hills up and down every alternate block. The fares are $2.50 per ride, with a day pass available for $5. A useful app for checking bus routes would be Citymapper, which is useful for many cities such as riding the Subway in New York City.
    3. Cycling or e-scooters: As parking is known to be expensive in SF, most locals and tourists alike cycle through the city along bike lanes or alongside cars on the main roads. Rental bikes are available throughout the city and you can even rent one via the Lyft app! As the city is made up of steep hills, both electric and non-electric bike options are available for you to choose from. Uber also allows you to scan any scooter left along the roadside and take it for a spin throughout the city.
    4. Uber/Lyft: A pricier option, taking an Uber/Lyft is the fastest way to travel in SF, especially if you’re in a rush or visiting destinations further away. However, it beats renting a car and paying for parking everywhere you go!

 

Here are some recommendations on which attractions to visit, especially if you’re there for only 3 days or so:

Inside Alcatraz Prison
    1. Alcatraz Island: This small island was once a fort, military prison, and a maximum-security federal penitentiary. A notorious prison, Alcatraz was shut down in 1963 as it was too expensive to maintain operations. Ferry tickets should be booked in advance as there are limited time-slots available and they do sell out fast! Other than the prison itself, the island was once a fort and its structures still exist. Prison guards and their families live on the island as well. There was also a period of American-Indian Occupation of the island, with museums depicting its history.

 

2. Golden Gate Bridge: An icon of SF, the Golden Gate Bridge is situated at the top of the Presidio. Hiking up the Presidio takes about 2 hours at a leisurely pace, but the views are definitely worth the effort. There are bike trails along the way as well but be careful as the hills are quite steep!

 

 

 

 

3. Fisherman’s Wharf and Pier 39: Situated along the coast, SF is known for their piers, with the most famous being pier 39. There, you can visit the restaurants to try their fresh seafood platters and clam chowders! Of course, you can’t miss the sea lions sunbathing in the warm afternoon sun as well.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sea Lions at Pier 39
Chinatown

 

 

4. Chinatown: San Francisco’s Chinatown is known to be the oldest and largest in America, and it is definitely a welcome sight for those feeling a little bit homesick while overseas!

 

 

 

 

Of course, there are many more places to go to in SF, but these are the few places I managed to visit on a 3-day weekend trip. It was my first stint at Solo Travelling and I thoroughly enjoyed myself there!

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