San Francisco

USA Holidays

Expert Opinion Our Expert
James Rivers

"San Francisco is such a fantastic city - there's so much to see, explore, taste and drink....and it has a great chilled out atmosphere. I can't recommend enough staying here at least 1 night before or after your Lake Tahoe ski trip!"

Overview

San Francisco is a city of great character, beautiful views and a huge variety of excellent restaurants, bars and shops. The city also offers a good range of famous attractions from Alcatraz and Fisherman's Wharf to Chinatown and the Golden Gate Bridge - it is a fun place to spend a few days.

San Francisco is also a good base for exploring the surrounding area which includes the wineries and fruit groves of the Napa Valley, one and a half hour's drive to the north, and mile after mile of beaches along the Pacific Coast Highway to the south.

For stays of 1 or 2 nights we recommend staying in a hotel, although we do offer self-catering apartments for longer stays. Most of the hotels are located either in the Union Square area, which is good for shopping, bars and restaurants, or at Fisherman's Wharf, which is convenient for visiting Alcatraz and the Golden Gate Bridge. Fisherman's Wharf is the more touristy area, although being close to the water is an attraction. Union Square is more of a city location.

You need to be prepared for the fact that staying in San Francisco is not particularly cheap and the city does get busy in the summer. There is often great weather and far fewer people at other times of year if you can travel outside the peak times. If you have to travel at peak times we recommend spending a couple of days in the city to do the sights and then heading for the wide open spaces of the mountains inland, or the beaches down the coast.