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Luke
Winnipeg, Manitoba

San Francisco

Attractions in San Francisco for Honeymoon

My fiancee and I are staying in San Francisco for roughly 4 days in early-mid July for part of our honeymoon. What are some of the most romantic and best attractions, sites and things to do. We are willing to splurge a little bit, but nothing too crazy.


9 Answers

top answer by
Bernard from Sacramento

Congrats!

I concur with the below, as Mark Twain is credited with saying, "The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco."

I'd also recommend the following in San Francisco:

  • Drinks or a meal at Top of the Mark at the Mark Hopkins Intl Hotel
  • Dinner in North Beach
  • Sunset walk at Ocean Beach, but be careful because it's usually the coldest part of the city
  • Rowboat or paddleboat in Stow Lake
  • Of course, walk across Golden Gate Bridge
  • Walk through Golden Gate Park or rent some bikes, if you're there on a Sunday they close the park to automobile traffic
  • While you're in the park be sure to visit the Japanese Tea Garden
  • There's also some great restaurants over by the park around the intersection of 9th and Irving St. 
  • Alcatraz of course, not romantic per se (although you ride a ferry over), but you MUST reserve your tickets in advance because they sell out quickly
  • Walk up Coit Tower
  • If it's your thing there are the SF Ballet, Opera and Symphony
  • If you have a car, I suggest driving up to the top of Twin Peaks at night
  • Crissy Field is nice during the day
  • You can also visit the Painted Ladies
  • Of course, be sure to take one ride on the Cable Cars, touristy but fun
  • I'd recommend the Opera/Symphony in the Park, but I don't think it works with your travel dates


If you had more time, I'd recommend going outside of SF for a half-day trip to Half Moon Bay or Sausalito

These places are OK, but more touristy than anything else and kind of time wasters if you don't have a lot of time:


Not romantic at all, but the following are cool if it tickles your fancy (I'd probably skip since you only have 4 days):


Good nightlife spots in SOMA and Mission District, but can be slightly dodgy in some areas, but generally safe if you're somewhat careful.

Phew! I guess that's it for now. Hope it helps.


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Top of the Mark (hotel)
  2. North Beach (neighborhood)
  3. Ocean Beach (attraction)
  4. Stow Lake (attraction)
  5. Golden Gate Bridge (attraction)
  6. Golden Gate Park (attraction)
  7. Japanese Tea Garden (attraction)
  8. Alcatraz (attraction)
  9. Coit Tower (attraction)
  10. Twin Peaks (attraction)
  11. Crissy Field (attraction)
  12. Painted Ladies (attraction)
  13. Cable Cars (attraction)
  14. Half Moon Bay (city)
  15. Sausalito (city)
  16. Lombard Street (attraction)
  17. Fisherman's Wharf (attraction)
  18. San Francisco Chinatown (attraction)
  19. Exploratorium (attraction)
  20. California Academy of Sciences (attraction)
  21. SOMA (neighborhood)
  22. Mission District (neighborhood)
7 thankscomments (5)


answered by
Steve from San Francisco


Luke, you have made the right choice.  San Francisco is a beautiful place to spend four days.  I've got tons of ideas, but I'll keep this short as I suspect a lot of people will weigh in.

First, banish your thought that all of California is warm during the summer months.  San Francisco is brisk, very brisk, during the month of July.  Bring a jacket.  I love seeing all the tourists who purchase "San Francisco" sweatshirts because they failed to pack appropriately.

If it's a honeymoon, and if you are going to splurge, then look into Gary Danko for dinner.  Yes, huge price tag and call ahead, but I've been there and have not been to its equal since.  Simply outstanding service and food, and a very romantic dinner to be had.  Probably one of the best restaurants on the planet.

Check out Epic Roasthouse for a glass of wine or dinner.  Go to the second floor.  There is a balcony that looks out on the Bay Bridge which is beautifully lit at night.  Get a glass of white/red and watch the light show.  (Remember to bring your jacket.)  Afterwards, you could go for a stroll north along the Embarcadero.

My wife and I love hitting up the Farmers Market at the Ferry Building on Saturday morning.  It's a great place to see produce, people and the San Francisco food scene.  In the very back of the parking lot, the east side of the parking lot, there is a Mexican place called Prima Vera which serves some authentic, tasty, Chilaquiles.  Buy some of those, get some of their good punch and then go sit on a park bench and watch the bay while you eat breakfast.  There is typically live music there as well.

For a bit more solitude and quiet, head to Muir Woods, which is about 45 minutes north of the city.  Yes, this is well trafficked, yes, there are a lot of people here.  But it is worth it.  There is something holy and serene and romantic about these trees, and I never tire of it.  Before you head up, get some picnic supplies at a whole foods, head up the Ben Johnson trail and enjoy a lunch on the green bluffs that overlook the pacific.

If I could, may I suggest that you not go to Pier 39.  If you are planning this part of the honeymoon, and if you continue to want to make a good impression on your bride to be, then you need to avoid this souless, commercial, tourist trap.  (And as a citizen of San Francisco, I would appreciate if your tourist dollars went to something more original, pure and cool.)  If you are on trippy, then you are better this.  If you absolutely have to have ice cream, then check out Bi-Rite Creamery or Humphry Slocombe in the Mission.

 I'll stop here, as I think you'll get tons more stuff to choose from.

Have fun,

Steve


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Gary Danko (restaurant)
  2. Epic Roasthouse (attraction)
  3. Ferry Building (attraction)
  4. Pier 39 (attraction)
  5. Bi-Rite Creamery (attraction)
  6. Humphry Slocombe (restaurant)
  7. Muir Woods (region)
5 thanks


answered by
Edward from New York City

Here are just a few. Go walking around in Golden Gate Park. There are lots of trails and gardens to get lost in, such as the Japanese Tea Garden. Gradually make your way west to the coast. Hang a right and go to Cliff House for a drink or even a snack or meal. You can also walk around the old Sutro Baths baths site that burned down long ago. I also recommend hiking in the Marin Headlands on the other side of the Golden Gate Bridge. Or, rent bikes, pack a picnic and ride to the top of Twin Peaks, then you can glide ALL THE WAY back to downtown. Other spots include the Palace of Fine ArtsFort Point National Historic Site, the Filbert Steps and Lombard Street. Sorry, I'm not up to date on the latest good restaurants or hotels. Side note - if you are into art (or even if you're not), be sure to take a look at Wayne Thiebaud's San Francisco paintings before you go. Images are easily found online.


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Golden Gate Park (attraction)
  2. Japanese Tea Garden (attraction)
  3. Cliff House (attraction)
  4. Sutro Baths (attraction)
  5. Marin Headlands (attraction)
  6. Golden Gate Bridge (attraction)
  7. Twin Peaks (attraction)
  8. Palace of Fine Arts (attraction)
  9. Fort Point National Historic Site (attraction)
  10. Lombard Street (attraction)
  11. Filbert Steps (attraction)
4 thankscomments (2)


answered first by
Elana from Sunnyvale, California

Congrats on your upcoming wedding! The Cliff House Bistro does a great brunch with a beautiful ocean view and easy access to Lands End National Park. Dress warmly. Typically, it will be chilly and foggy in July.


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Cliff House Bistro (attraction)
  2. Lands End (attraction)
4 thankscomments (1)


answered by
Roberta from Los Angeles

Try this wonderful restaurant in the Marina, called A16 @ 2355 Chestnut.    


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. A16 (restaurant)
3 thanks


answered by
Courtney from Los Angeles

This is a totally random answer a little bit of a tangent from your question but if you can, try to stop in at a store called bellocchio. I know it seems odd to describe a store as romantic, but trust me--this one is. It's just a little specialty shop on a hidden side street but I can see picking up something there as a memento of your trip. They carry lots of little inexpensive but beautiful trinkets from France and Italy. 

On another note, try to have at least one meal in The Garden Court of the Palace Hotel. Both the hotel and the setting are two of the most beautiful, romantic places I've ever seen (I stayed there for a week once on a business trip). While you're there, don't miss the Pied Piper Bar & Grill with the amazing Maxfield Parrish mural. Great place to people watch, too. 



Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Palace Hotel (hotel)
  2. bellocchio (attraction)
  3. The Garden Court (restaurant)
  4. Pied Piper Bar & Grill (attraction)
  5. Pied Piper Bar & Grill (attraction)
2 thanks


answered by
Christopher from Nashville

One of the coolest things you can do is to take a not-too-expensive day trip to Tiburon. Avoid the weekday rush hours; catch the ferry at Pier 41 near Fisherman's Wharf. Once there, have a drink and/or lunch on the deck at Sam's Anchor Cafe. The view looking back at San Fran is wonderful. (Some people recommend a bus trip one-way to ride across the Golden Gate Bridge, then return on the ferry.) Check out http://www.blueandgoldfleet.com/ferry-services/ and Sam's webcam at http://www.samscafe.com/cam.html around 1 pm PT.


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Tiburon (city)
  2. Fisherman's Wharf (attraction)
  3. Pier 41 (attraction)
  4. Sam's Anchor Cafe (restaurant)
2 thankscomments (1)


answered by
Modern from San Francisco, California

Good for you! Definitely take a picnic and hike the Pacific Coast Trail out of Muir Beach. Return and have a campfire!


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Muir Beach (attraction)
1 thanks


answered by
Emi from San Francisco

Love that! You need to go up to the top of Twin Peaks (you can drive) and take in the best view of the city. Get a Twirl & Dip ice cream cone in Golden Gate Park, and make sure to see the Bay Bridge lights at night. Have fun! You can see more on our guide here if you want! Xo

http://www.welltraveledwife.com/2013/01/c-guide-to-san-francisco.html


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Twin Peaks (attraction)
  2. Golden Gate Park (attraction)
1 thanks




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