Sightseeing San Francisco in One Day

During our time camping in San Rafael this past July, we decided to make a day trip to San Francisco. It was only about a 40-minute drive and it was well worth it. I feel that I got to see quite a few things during one days time.

After we found a reasonably priced parking spot via Spot Hero, we decided to head to Chinatown to find some lunch.


While we were looking at menus in the various restaurant windows, a lady from one establishment came out and basically invited us in. We felt rude to say no, plus we were starving, so we just went with it.


It turned out that going inside was a great decision! We got some great Chinese food and had a great experience.

After we ate, we walked down to the Port of San Francisco. Our original plan was to get some vegan ice cream at a shop there that we found online. Unfortunately, they no longer served vegan ice cream. That was okay though, it was still nice to walk around and explore more of the city.




Public toilet in the middle of town


After walking around, and up and down, the many hilly streets, we decided to get our car and explore a couple of places that were not so easy to reach by foot.



You know the sidewalks are steep when they have stairs


Our next stop was the Painted Ladies. I have always wanted to see them in person, and parking in front of them was surprisingly easy!


Afterwards, we wanted to see Lombard Street a.k.a. “the crookedest street in the world.” I thought our GPS may just take us to the bottom so we could watch the cars slowly descend. Our GPS had other plans, because we ended up going down the street ourselves.

As we approached the 5-mile per hour street sign, I figured that it was about to get interesting.


Every turn was basically a stop in the road, so there was no going even the designated 5mph. The houses and shrubbery around the street are all very beautiful, and someone even parked their Porsche in a spot on the street that I am assuming lives in one of these houses.


Our last stop of the day was the Golden Gate Bridge. We had visited it once before, but not quite like this. We even visited one of the beaches that is almost underneath the start of the bridge.



It is quite a lovely area, and there are many parks and beaches to explore around the bridge.


Have you visited San Francisco? What was your favorite thing to see or do?


27 thoughts on “Sightseeing San Francisco in One Day

  1. Great overview of my hometown! I love San Francisco and it’s many fun spots. If you return I recommend going on a saga for the fortune cookie factory in China Town! And taking a stroll through Hayes Valley Aka “Lower Haight”. Also if you didn’t get a chance to do so next time you’re in San Rafael hit up Sol Food your stomach will thank you!!!

    • For parking in the city, I highly recommend getting the SpotHero app. You’ll see plenty of expensive parking, but with this app we were able to get it for $15! If you visit the Painted Ladies or Lombard Street, we had no issues getting free parking spots right by these areas. The view we had of the bridge was from Moore Road Pier. You could also visit Marshall Beach for a similar view! I hope you have an awesome visit!! πŸ™‚

  2. The Haight Street, Ghirardelli Square (being a chocoholic) and a ride on a Street Car…my fave moments in SF! That spot almost below the Bridge in your blog looks very interesting πŸ™‚

  3. Lovely pictures, you seem to have had a great day! I got the chance to visit San Francisco for five days just a month ago. Im from Sweden so its quite the long trip. Loved every minute of it, but dipping my feet in the ocean on a beach overlooked by the golden gate bridge was my favourite moment. πŸ™‚

    • Oh I’m glad that you enjoyed it! San Francisco is definitely a beautiful and wonderful place. I’ve always wanted to visit Sweden, so hopefully I can within the next year or so! πŸ™‚

      • I hope you get to visit Sweden, its very different from the states and actually also from the rest of Europe. Scandinavia really is its own thing. πŸ™‚ Let me know if you need any destination tips.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.