The other night someone told me that they enjoy reading my Yelp reviews which I do inconsistently. Never enough hours in the day.
My favorite travel guide is Frommer’s. The books are visually-appealing with an easy-to-read layout and structure, starting with an introduction and favorites things to do, fast facts, and visitor information. I also like that they include a map and useful phrases if you’re traveling outside the U.S. But I find most helpful the section on suggested itineraries for a week, two weeks, etc.
I’m not going to give a sample itinerary for a whole week in San Francisco (which is way too much time for this sleepy city), but here’s what I recommend for a weekend. This is for all my friends in the burbs.
Hotel Recommendation: Hotel Vitale on the Embarcadero. This place is new, has rooftop jacuzzis, is a hot spot for happy hour, conveniently located across from the Ferry Building, and there are no homeless people aggressively shoving their hands in your way asking for spare change.
Friday Evening: Arrive and check-in, stroll along the Embarcadero and checkout the Ferry Building, dinner at Slanted Door, walk to Union Square and have late night drinks at the Gold Dust Lounge. I love the nightly live band!
Saturday: head to the ocean for brunch at the Cliff House, checkout Golden Gate Park. Do not miss the De Young and the observation tower. Toward the evening, walk around North Beach, dine at House for the best fusion food, and catch the 9:30pm showing of Beach Blanket Babylon. Late night drinks at Vesuvio. We know people who work there. They’re the best.
Sunday: hop on a cable car near Market and California, do not be a tourist and stand in line at the Powell station. Stop at Grace Cathedral and meditate while walking along the labyrinth. Go to Golden Gate Bridge to take pictures, then have brunch at the Presidio Social Club. Finish off your weekend trip with some time in the Mission. Get salted caramel and honey lavender ice-cream from Bi-Rite. If you have time for dinner, go to Commonwealth.