Wednesday’s highlight was taking my friend Ali, who is visiting from Melbourne Australia, and his mom, on a grand, quickie tour of San Francisco, followed by dinner and ice cream.
I picked them up from their hotel down in the Warf (note, the Warf is a horrible place to stay, but they often have the cheapest hotels), and driving them around to the best city highlights.
First things first, a trip across the Golden Gate Bridge. And what a great day for it. The winds were kicking up as usual, but the skies are clear with no sign of that famous SF dense fog. Neither one of them had been to the Vista Point just on the north side of the bridge, so that was our first stop.
Next up to the top of Marin Headlands for the best views of the bridge and the city. I always start people at the top. There are a few places along the way to stop, but I think it is best to stop at the top first, then work your way down and closer to the bridge.
Plus at the top you can also walk around to the Pacific Ocean side. Note, this is a great place to watch the sunset, but be prepared to boogie out of there once the sun sets as there are no lights to help guide you back to the main path and to your car.
On down to the bottom scenic point next. I love this stop. You are so close to the bridge that you feel like you can almost touch it. The winds really kick up here, so ladies be prepared with a hair tie or a hat…and maybe a scarf! Hold on to your small dogs and children too.
I drove them all over the place… Fort Point, through the Presidio along the coast road, brief stop at Baker Beach, out the 25th Avenue Gate, through Sea Cliff, Lands End, all the way to Sutro Bath Ruins. We took a few photos there too…but the wind was so intense we all literally hopped out, took a photo and hopped back into the car.
Next down to Ocean Beach and through the Dutch Windmill north gate to Golden Gate Park. We briefly stopped at the Queen Wilhemina Tulip Garden, but it was pasted its prime. Next past the bison paddock, Stow Lake, Sharon Meadow, DeYoung Museum, music shell, Academy of Sciences and eventually getting out of the car at the Conservatory of Flowers. Unfortunately they are in process of changing out the spring flowers for the summer ones, so its not a beautiful as it can be…but its hard to argue with the beauty of the Conservatory itself.
Next I took the back roads to the top of Twin Peaks. This too is one of the windiest places in SF, if not the world. Quickly out and back in the car again. By this point we’ve all worked up quite an appetite, so off we went to one of my favorite SF restaurants, Zarzuela. Zarzuela has some of the best Spanish Tapas around. I had my birthday party there last year. Love them!
After a delicious dinner we went across the street and capped things off with some homemade ice cream from Swensen’s. Deeeelish!
Thursday was dull by comparison to Wednesday’s activities. I just did some work and worked out.
Friday I rose early to head to Sonoma for a Sustainability Conference. It was an enterprise sustainability topic, I should have researched the conference better before asking for a media pass. I thought there would be more from a community aspect and definitely one from a wine perspective. Odd that there was zero mention of wine sustainability and the conference was held in Sonoma. Oh well. I did learn a bit and was happy for the opportunity. The property that the conference was on, although hard to find, was quiet and beautiful.
I left early since I didn’t want to get caught in traffic, plus I wasn’t really that into the topics/sessions. We made impromptu plans to visit with friends in Mill Valley that night and catch up.
I briefly went back home to pick Dan up then head back over the GG Bridge to Mill Valley to our friends Ken and Vanessa’s place. They have a new son that was born in January of this year. Its been probably two months since we’ve seen them, and man do kids grow fast in a short amount of time!