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My San Francisco Picks

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1 Muir Woods Rd, Mill Valley, CA 94941, USA
Just 12 miles north of the Golden Gate Bridge is Muir Woods National Monument, a 554-acre park; old-growth coast redwoods, the tallest trees in the world, cover 295 of those acres. Peaceful and lush, the forest is ideal for simply communing with...
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1913 Bridgeway, Sausalito, CA 94965, USA

Just north of the northern end of the Golden Gate Bridge in Marin County, the little town of Sausalito has an enviable location sitting on San Francisco Bay. For much of its history, Sausalito had a somewhat raffish reputation first as the home of...

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Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco, CA 94129, USA

There is perhaps no landmark of San Francisco, and perhaps even the entire state of California, more iconic than the Golden Gate Bridge. This much-photographed bridge spans the Golden Gate, the strait separating San Francisco (to the south) and...

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Golden Gate Park, San Francisco, CA, USA
Golden Gate Park was formed out of an expanse of sand dunes to the west of the city in the nineteenth century—a history that is still discernible in the rolling topography of much of the park’s more than 1,000 acres. Over 13 million...
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1199 9th Ave, San Francisco, CA 94122, USA

Located within Golden Gate Park, the San Francisco Botanical Garden is one of the United States' most important botanical gardens and the largest of its kind on the West Coast. Thanks to the Bay Area's mild climate, with coastal fogs keeping...

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75 Hagiwara Tea Garden Dr, San Francisco, CA CA 94118, USA

While Japanese gardens have come to be an expected feature of many botanical parks around the world, the Japanese Tea Garden, which opened in 1894, was the first public tea garden in the United States. The original plot consisted of less than half...

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50 Hagiwara Tea Garden Dr, San Francisco, CA 94118, USA
The de Young Museum, with its perforated copper facade and spiraling tower in the center of Golden Gate Park, is as dramatic outside as it is inside. Follow the widening crack in the sidewalk into the atrium. It's an Andy Goldsworthy–created...
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55 Music Concourse Dr, San Francisco, CA 94118, USA

The California Academy of Sciences is an unfortunately stuffy name for an institution that is anything but staid. The country's largest natural-history museum includes an aquarium, a planetarium, an enormous rain-forest exhibit under a...

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100 34th Ave, San Francisco, CA 94121, USA

San Francisco's Legion of Honor, in Lincoln Park in the northwest corner of the city, has stunning views of the Golden Gate Bridge. The building is a replica of the French pavilion constructed for the 1915 Panama-Pacific International Exposition,...

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151 3rd St, San Francisco, CA 94103, USA
It had been a long wait for modern art lovers, but after a three-year closure and a $305 million renovation and expansion, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) reopened in May 2016, and was it ever worth the wait. A new 10-story...
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Taylor St, San Francisco, CA 94133, USA

Fisherman's Wharf, really a section of the waterfront running from Ghirardelli Square to Pier 35 and not just one pier, is one of San Francisco's oldest attractions. This is definitely a very tourist-friendly version of the old maritime life of...

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There are several Chinatowns in the Bay Area, but this 24-block one is the oldest—not just in San Francisco, but in all of North America. The first record of Chinese settlers in San Francisco dates their arrival to 1848, but the gold rush a...

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736 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94103, USA

While San Francisco's Contemporary Jewish Museum dates back to 1994, it moved into its current location in 2008. The heart of the museum's new home is a 1907 Pacific Gas & Electric power substation, with additions designed by one of...

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1100 California St, San Francisco, CA 94108, USA

San Francisco's first Grace Church dates back to the days of the gold rush, when an Episcopal church by that name was founded in 1849. Construction of the Grace Cathedral that now stands atop Nob Hill began in 1928, though the building was not...

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San Francisco, CA 94133, USA
Alcatraz—the very name conjures dark images of impregnable prisons, infamous criminals, and daring escape attempts. But the island is not all murder and mayhem. “The Rock,” set a few kilometers offshore in the San Francisco...
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Filbert St & Stockton Street, San Francisco, CA 94133, USA

Adjacent to San Francisco's Chinatown, North Beach was long the center of the city's Italian community. (Joe DiMaggio and former mayor Joe Alioto are among the famous Italian Americans who grew up here.) The symbolic heart of the neighborhood is...

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1 Dr Carlton B Goodlett Pl, San Francisco, CA 94102, USA

Even if you aren't a San Francisco resident, you may recognize its City Hall thanks to its frequent big-screen appearances. (It has often played the role of the capitol building of various fictional countries.) This grand edifice has a dome taller...

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200 Larkin St, San Francisco, CA 94102, USA

Given that San Francisco has frequently had one eye on the Pacific, and that generations of immigrants from Asia have shaped the city's history, it is perhaps not surprising that one of the world's premier institutions devoted to Asian art can be...

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333 Post St, San Francisco, CA 94108, USA

Somewhat as Times Square is to New York or Trafalgar Square is to London, Union Square is to San Francisco. This is the place where the city's Christmas tree is erected and the New Year rung in. Its role as the city's principal gathering spot...

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Steiner St & Hayes Street, San Francisco, CA 94117, USA

An estimated 48,000 houses were constructed in San Francisco from 1848 to 1915 in the style typical of the day, with ornate woodwork characteristic of so-called Queen Anne design. Earthquakes and fires, most notably those of 1906, destroyed...