I am going to San Francisco…. !!!

Because she’s awesome, a blogger, from San Fransisco and I like to take every opportunity to show off this photo.

That’s right, in less than two weeks I’ll be taking San Francisco by storm for the first time!  Excited?  Please. That word doesn’t even come close to sufficient.  You haven’t a clue the choreographed numbers my insides have put together in anticipation for this trip.

So, like any self respecting blogger, I come to you, the blogosphere, for guidance! I’ve done some internet scouring, talked to friends and family, read up on Maggie’s SF to-dos and put together a pretty good list of musts (yes, the obvious trip to Alcatraz and Golden Gate Park, etc have already made the cut).

Here’s the thing:  I’m a city girl (duh) so I understand the importance of seeing a city like a local.  The not-for-tourists locations. So fill me in internets,  where does a girl who loves art, music, food, coffee, adventure and exploring go to pretend she’s not a tourist in San Francisco?

I want some super great restaurant advice and also the best place to go grocery shopping (cooking at home WILL be a part of my trip).  How about some craft and/or art supply stores?  Any great video arcades?  What’s the best place to sit and people watch?  As a photographer, where must I go for some great shots to take home with me?

I’m also thinking a meetup is in order so if anyone is going to be in the area in February, let me know! More on that later.

Ok, so now’s the part where I sit back and wait for my inbox and comments to fill up with radical suggestions, right?

8 Comments

  1. Reply
    Annie January 20, 2011

    Do you know what part of town you’ll be staying in yet? Neighborhood won’t matter much, but when it comes to things like groceries, you won’t want to haul them for miles.
    Am crazy jealous. One of my top 5 favorite cities.

  2. Reply
    steff January 20, 2011

    yay! that sounds awesome, ry. i’m sure you’ll have a blast. unfortch i’m probably not much help in suggestions of things to do that are non-touristy in SF. the last (and only) time i was there, i was 13 and i was hanging out with a septagenarian and my grandmother. and no, they werent the same person. i DO remember having a great time and loving the city though. i’m sure you’ll find your way easily once you get there, PLUS you’ll probably want to hit up the cliched spots at least once while you’re there: lombard street, haight ashbury and fishermans warf are all way over-exposed but still a must see. just avoid the trolleys. im pretty sure ONLY the tourists take those.
    great to hear about you finding a new lease on life. i also have not had a smoke since the new year and just started working out again and in those few short weeks already feel like a new person. or at least on my way to getting there.
    good for you! glad to see you’re back.

  3. Reply
    Dumblond January 20, 2011

    I can’t wait to see your photos of your trip!
    I’ve never been to SF so I wouldn’t know where to begin. Good luck!

  4. Reply
    Jason S January 20, 2011

    This post could take me days to write if I only just focused on restaurants.
    Food:
    This is a great list of things to eat.
    http://www.7×7.com/eat-drink/2010-big-eat-sf-100-things-try-you-die
    My absolutely favorite restaurant in the city is Boulevard but it’s quite pricey. There are so many great places to eat from dives to 3 stars. What part of the city are you going to be staying in? Eating at a taqueria in the mission is a must. I love Little Skillet, a hole in the wall down an alley.
    For buying food, we have some good farmer markets. The farmer market at the ferry building is high end and pricey. The real deal farmer market is the Alemany farmers market which can be hard to get to depending on where you are staying. Honestly, I shop at Safeway and Whole Foods. Some people love Rainbow Grocery which is a hippie market paradise.
    http://www.yelp.com/biz/rainbow-grocery-san-francisco
    Yelp is heavily used here.
    There are ton of art stores here. Flax and Blix are awesome and both on Market Street.
    I would love to go on a photowalk with you. Do you have a Canon? I just picked up a 100mm macro lens. I love that lens. You’re welcome to use it if you’re interested. Look on craigslist and on calumet site for organized photowalks.
    No great video arcade that I know of. Sucks. This city needs more pinball machines.

  5. Reply
    Jason S January 20, 2011

    One more thing. Do you ski? If you so, you should take a 1 day trip up to Tahoe via the ski bus. Tahoe is awesome.
    http://www.bayareaskibus.com/

  6. Reply
    Gary January 22, 2011

    Ah, San Francisco. Great city. Been there a few times doing the regular touristy stuff right out of the guide books. For something better, you might try contacting this guy – http://powazek.com/. But watch out – he can be a tad bit mercurial at times. I know him only from his blogs (which is to say I don’t really know him at all) and it’s not like he’s into the travel agent stuff, but he seems to know and love San Francisco and I’m thinking if you catch him at the right time he might help a fellow blogger out. Worth a shot, anyway.

  7. Reply
    Gary January 22, 2011

    Ah, San Francisco. Great city. Been there a few times doing the regular touristy stuff right out of the guide books. For something better, you might try contacting this guy – http://powazek.com/. But watch out – he can be a tad bit mercurial at times. I know him only from his blogs (which is to say I don’t really know him at all) and it’s not like he’s into the travel agent stuff, but he seems to know and love San Francisco and I’m thinking if you catch him at the right time he might help a fellow blogger out. Worth a shot, anyway.

  8. Reply
    Lea R January 27, 2011

    Oh, I’m so jealous! That’s one of my favorite places on earth, but we haven’t visited since our first daughter was born…six and a half years ago.
    Cross the Golden Gate bridge and stop in the Marin Headlands. Take the time to hike to the top (half mile, maybe) and take in the views back towards the city. It’s stunning. Try for a relatively clear time, if you can.
    The drive up into Marin county is beautiful. We loved hiking the Mt. Tam trail (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mount_Tamalpais). Start at some point near the top and go all the way down to the beach, where you can buy a simple lunch at the snack stand and put your feet in the water for a bit. Wear layers…the weather changes so much on that one hike!
    Definitely spend a morning or afternoon in the Presidio. It’s gorgeous.
    It’s actually fun to take the cable cars on the non-touristy routes, like up to Pacific Heights or something.
    Hang around and shop in Noe Valley. Maybe buy a lunch and walk up to Duboce Park to eat it. The electric train cars run right through the park, so you can get there and take off from there easily.
    It’s really fun to shop the galleries and home stores in Hayes Valley.
    Have a blast!
    – Lea

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