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28 February 2010

I'm Going to San Francisco Next weekend! And I want to meet you! And I need advice on what to see and where to go and what to wear and whoa, everything. Plane advice is good too: I haven't flown since before 9/11.
Man I'm missing you by a week, but lucky you! SF is one of my favorite places. How long are you staying and what have you seen before ( if anything?)
posted by The Whelk 28 February | 19:34
I'm there Thursday through Sunday and I've never been before if you don't count the trip with my parents when I was six. I vaguely remember riding on a cable car from that but otherwise my entire knowledge of San Francisco is a combination of Rice A Roni commercials, Richard Brautigan and some book about the Doors. They have a park there, right? And a bridge? And there's a song about how you should put flowers in your hair.
posted by mygothlaundry 28 February | 19:43
Wear shoes that are easy to remove while standing up -- they expect you to take off your shoes and run them through the x-ray with your other carry-on stuff, but they don't give you any place to sit down to take them off.
posted by JanetLand 28 February | 19:44
Yeah you are Gonna Be Walking and there Are Hills.

One of the things I loved to was rent a bike and tool around Golden Gate Park and then over the bridge and down into Sausilto for ice cream and then take the ferry back. Touristy, but very fun.
posted by The Whelk 28 February | 19:49
I'm a fan of big long walks, the Length of Market or Post brings you trhough a bunch of neighborhoods and check out The Castro Theater, it's a big beautiful old palace. Walk down Mission for kicky used stores and rose ice cream and burritos the size of your head. Colt Tower is a huge winding maze to get to and has awesome views and WPA era art. Check out the Cartoon Art Museum and the Van Huesen warehouse store a block from there for cheap business-y duds.

Take the metro down to the Zoo and then walk along the beach.
posted by The Whelk 28 February | 19:53
Have Sunday brunch at the Hotel Monaco and break the bank (Lobster club sandwich!) The Top Of The Mark is totally touristy but you have to go once to see the huge skyline views - go for early sun-setting cocktails at insane prices. You have to go to Chinatown of course, but grab a drink at Li Po's a former opium-den turned bar which is the set to a non-existent Tarentino movie and wander off Grant St, the other ones are less touristy (and you can go to the Fortune Cookie Factory and buy tasty, dirty cookies) (and while in China-Town, grab a nosh at the Far East Cafe. The food is, I'm gonna say not great but it has a crazy 1930s interior and you have to see the lamps. Stick to snacks.)


The Starlight room, at all costs.

Union Square has nothing of note in it save The hotel Rex which has a beautiful 20s-ish bar and weekly drink specials.

The Trolleys in general cause they are So. Crowded but the Trolley Museum is fascinating, you get to see the big pully/engine room that drives them all.

Fisherman's Warf in general but yer gonna end up there no matter what so watch the seals and go to the Muse' Mechainique. Trust me.
posted by The Whelk 28 February | 20:07
And if you're stuck in Union Square, Cafe' Mason is a gem for breakfast lunch or dinner, way better food then they should have for their price and location.
posted by The Whelk 28 February | 20:10
And don;t wear shorts. It's "Nice" but Cool. Layers.
posted by The Whelk 28 February | 20:12
One of the things I loved to was rent a bike and tool around Golden Gate Park and then over the bridge and down into Sausilto for ice cream and then take the ferry back. Touristy, but very fun.

Ooh, I did this too and it was a lot of fun. Pretty decent workout too.
posted by ufez 28 February | 20:31
Yay! These are great; I am so excited.
posted by mygothlaundry 28 February | 20:38
Some things I really enjoyed: The Ferry Plaza Farmers Market, City Lights books, and the gorgeous Japanese Tea Garden in Golden Gate Park.
posted by Miko 28 February | 20:58
Make sure that your laptop is easy to get to, you have to take it out and send it through the scanner by itself.
posted by octothorpe 28 February | 21:22
I want to go to San Francisco now and have The Whelk take me around!
posted by Kangaroo 28 February | 21:41
I second the There Are Hills aspect of SF. I love the city, but man, flats are terrible if you're doing anything remotely walk-y.
posted by unsurprising 28 February | 22:23
No matter how nice it is outside, take a jacket. You'll probably need it later and/or in some other neighborhood.

Take back a few Meyer lemons.

The library sponsors a lineup of free walking tours.

I have about forty thousand more things to suggest and will do so when I have a little more time.
posted by tangerine 01 March | 00:52
Go to Sears's for Swedish Pancakes. See the Diego Rivera Mural. City Lights Bookstore!
posted by brujita 01 March | 01:58
I'd certainly hit up SFMoMA, great museum, and the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts is just across the way. Seconding City Lights Books. The Stinking Rose is always a favorite place to eat (must like garlic) and is just a few blocks from City Lights. A good time is to walk through China Town, hit City Lights and then dinner at the Stinking Rose.
posted by kodama 01 March | 02:13
I have not had the pleasure to visit SF yet, but I have had the pleasure of meeting MGL.

MGL, I'm kind of jealous of your trip. Keep warm and have fun. Everyone at home will be just fine.

SF, I'm kind of jealous that you're getting a visit from MGL. She's smart and awesome.

I want pictures and stories please.
posted by lilywing13 01 March | 04:33
Just noticed you want flight tips! My biggest one since 9/11 is that if you can manage it, do all carry-on. Don't check bags. It just takes forever. If you can do a small suitcase that will fit in the overhead bin + a large bag or backpack that will hold laptop, personal items, and a book and can then double as your day bag while you're out and about, you'll be speedy in, speedy out. For any trip to a city that's short of a week, that works ok for me (doesn't work as well if you are going somewhere where you need special gear, like beach or hiking or boating).

Also, they mean it about the 3 oz. rule. You can't take a full water bottle through security with you, and any liquids you pack - shampoo, conditioner, mouthwash, soda, water - have to be in those tiny 3 oz or smaller containers.
posted by Miko 01 March | 09:42
ooh, ooh! Also, a few lovely MeCha bunnies took me out to some park nearby the Golden Gate Bridge, and we walked down a bluff to a small rocky beach where the surf was coming in, and I mean it was mad pounding surf, really dramatic. I recommend that, if you can figure out where that was! (tangerine?)
posted by Miko 01 March | 09:43
Mission Dolores Park is a nice one, and little habituated by tourists. Great view of the downtown skyline. The J-Church line.

(And if you are riding the Muni around, be sure to have proof of fare payment. . .if you ride some, you will be accosted by Muni cops asking for it. It's easy to ride free, except for that. . .)
posted by danf 01 March | 11:25
Also, I like Green Apple Books a lot more than City Lights, but it's slightly harder to get to on pub trans.
posted by danf 01 March | 11:27
Take the metro down to the Zoo and then walk along the beach.

L-Taravel for that one. There is a very greasy spoon breakfast joint down there also, across from the zoo. But good.
posted by danf 01 March | 11:29
Miko's remembering Land's End.

That was one of my favorite meetups ever. I still have a little striped pebble I picked up that day.
posted by tangerine 01 March | 13:33
Meetup is ON, y'all, even like unto Donkey Kong. Hope to see you San Franciscans there!
posted by mygothlaundry 01 March | 16:45
Yes, Green Apple is good for used/funky.
posted by brujita 02 March | 02:05
Dr. Horrible "Everything You Ever" Nintendo Style || "These fulfill all of my requirements for a perfect chocolate chip cookie"