I’ve caught a cold and have confined myself in my room so that I don’t spread my germs to my colleagues. It’s nothing serious but being sick and feeling weak and crappy reminded me of San Francisco. Why? Here’s why…
Anyone who’s been to San Francisco has probably see the famous Golden Gate Bridge. Well, not me. *I can hear a collective cyber gasp in my head right now*
In 2009 during my solo tour of USA, I had put San Francisco on my itinerary but due to time constraints, I only had 3 days in San Francisco. I booked my ticket online and planned to see Alcatraz on the third night there. My first day was reserved for Lombard Street and North Beach, while I was to explore Golden Gate Park and the Golden Gate Bridge the next day.
Well things don’t always go as planned do they? I had fallen sick when I was in San Francisco. I curled up in a ball in my hotel room, emerging only to get food at lunch time and dinner time. I would have done the same on my last day in San Francisco except I had already booked my tickets to Alcatraz and didn’t want to let it go to waste. So I forced myself to get up and get out on that cold Thursday morning.
The tickets to Alcatraz were for the evening, so I tried to squeeze in a much as I could take. I settled on making my way to Lombard Street then riding the tram to Union Square.
Lombard Street is said to be the “crookedest street in the world” but it really isn’t the crookedest street in San Francisco even. But, people, like me, flock there to see it because of the view it gives you from both the top and bottom of the street. Now San Francisco is famed for it’s steep slopes so because of the natural steep slope at Lombard Street, it wasn’t safe to go down that slope straight on. So it was suggested that switchbacks should be added to increase the safety when going down that street and at the same time, it added an aesthetic appeal to the street at the same time.
I walked up Lombard Street and was rewarded for the morning exercise with a awesome view of San Francisco. I was so glad I didn’t drive down Lombard Street because of the switchbacks. Those turns look so hard to maneuver! I can’t believe people actually live there and that it’s one of the most expensive properties in San Francisco! I wasn’t feeling so great so I didn’t really take a lot of photos but I sure was glad I hauled my butt out to Lombard Street despite being ill.
I hopped onto one of the trams San Francisco is known for and took a ride downtown to Union Square. I even got to see a protest there. But I had to find my way to the jetty for my Alcatraz tour so I didn’t explore much of Union Square.
Now this trip to San Francisco was pre-Alcatraz, the TV series, so I didn’t know what to expect. But it was creepy… Especially going there at night. I trailed behind the tour many times because I was trying to capture the eerie emptiness when everyone else had vacated the area and I had goosebumps. See if you do too?
You’re probably wondering why the heck did I crawl out of bed, sick and aching all over, just to see former prison. Firstly, I had already purchased the tickets to Alcatraz, and secondly, I can’t waste my entire stay in San Francisco and not see anything. I don’t regret going too. It’s a pretty interesting piece of history and I was glad I learnt more about it. In fact, there’s an awesome factual video about The Rock in the links below. It’s by History.com do have a look at it.
Essentially, I only spend a day in San Francisco. And on my next visit to the USA, I will definitely want to go back there to explore more of it!
What do you think?
What else in San Francisco should I see when I go back there? Have you driven down Lombard Street? What was it like to do so? Have you ever been to Alcatraz? Did it creep you out? What would you have done? Would you have a) stayed in the hotel room, b) visited other San Francisco attraction, or c) do what I did?
- Lombard Crooked Street – San Francisco (sftodo.com)
- Lombard Street Closed; San Francisco Temporarily Bans Cars From ‘World’s Crookedest Street’ (huffingtonpost.com)
- Visiting Lombard Street (gosanfrancisco.about.com)
- How to photograph Lombard Street (ca.myphotoscout.com)
- Alcatraz (history.com)
- Alcatraz Island (nps.gov)
- Alcatraz Island: An Inescapable Experience (alcatrazcruises.com)
Click here to follow The SIA Brat on Facebook