Ever been to San Francisco, or thinking about it? I can tell you that one of the best places to be in this gorgeous city, is right at the very edge right by the sea front, where you can get a great feel and view for the wonderful culture that San Francisco has to offer.
Whilst on our whereabouts around the city and whilst taking several tours, every person we would get chatting to whether they were a tour guide, a tourist or a local - would all say 'Have you been down to the piers yet? You must go!'
With the pier area being the second biggest attraction in California after Disneyworld (which I was quite surprised at), it has a lot to offer and there is always something going on down by the sea front. The most famous of all the piers is Pier 39 which is right next to Fisherman's Wharf, it's popularity is down to some rather unlikely creatures - sea lions, that congregate there throughout the year (be warned, they really do smell bad). They have become such a large attraction for the city of San Fran and no matter what time of day it is there are always crowds of people circling around and admiring them in their wild habitat. Just next to the sea lions you can find a little cluster of restaurants and shops that sell a range of fish, lobster and shell fish a long with San Francisco's world famous sour-dough bread, they also sell ice cream and various other puddings too. You will also find the Alcatraz Aquarium here, which I didn't actually visit but have some photos that were taken from the outside (see below).
When walking up and down the sea front, you can venture out on to all the different piers and see all of the stunning views that San Francisco has to offer, like the Bay Bridge - which has only recently been reopened (Sept 2013) after 12 years of construction, due to it being badly damaged in the 1989 earthquake. There are prime picture moments to be taken here - you can get a mega-clear view/shot of the Bay Bridge and wonderful shots of the city, you also get a real feel for the culture, as every bench a long the piers are taken up with local fisherman.
Although being warned before hand about how cold San Francisco would be, we actually found ourselves pretty lucky in that we didn't need to wear big jackets or coats at all and we found out towards the end of our trip that October is one of the best months to go - it is much warmer than July/August time, which is surprising considering it is in the sunny state of California.
We also stumbled across a farmers market on our last day in San Francisco which is situated in a ferry building - 'the Ferry Building Market Place' it was extremely busy but has lots of wonderful stalls ranging from home-made jams and jellies to hog roasts and beer.
Another thing that San Francisco is very widely famous for are their one of a kind cable cars that still pull passengers up and down the hilly roads. I definitely recommend doing this - a single ride is $7 and an all day pass (unlimited riding) is $21. There are only three main cable car routes remaining in San Francisco that take you from A to B, one being Powell/Mason St, Powell/Hyde St and California St. We rode on the Powell/Mason street car which took you all the way from Fisherman's Wharf right back up to Union Square.