Top 10 Things to See/Do in NorCal

 

 

  1. This is an obvious one, and the most likely of all reasons that you’re visiting, but Tour San Francisco. Use the double-decker Hop On Hop Off buses to get around and to learn about the city’s interesting history. Visit the Painted Ladies. Find your zen in the Japanese Tea Garden located within Golden Gate Park. Feel the funk in Haight Asbury or smell the funk at Fisherman’s Wharf. Enjoy ice cream in Sausalito. Admire the engineering wonders of the Golden Gate Bridge. Uber to the bottom of Lombard Street then climb to the top. Stop to smell the hydrangeas along the way. Then, catch a street car ride to Union Square. If you’re lucky, you might be allowed to pose for an iconic action shot.
  2. Walk the Golden Gate Bridge. It’s only 1.7 miles to get across, but dress warm. It’s characteristically chilly & windy.
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  3. Visit Alcatraz. Book your reservations early, especially if you want to do a night tour!
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  4. Get lost in Muir Woods. This national monument, dedicated the giant redwoods native to this region offers a peaceful escape right in the city’s backyard. Parking is EXTREMELY limited, so purchase your space ahead of time. During peak season, you will be turned away without an advanced purchase. Cell service is also limited in the area, so have everything pulled up or printed before you descend into the park.
  5. If you’re up for a road trip, Yosemite National Park is a MUST. I’m a national park enthusiast, but this one has it all. Granite cliffs (El Capitan & Half Dome). Picturesque waterfalls from melting glaciers. Giant Sequoia trees. Wildlife and countless recreational activities.  Pro tip: use the valet parking at the Yosemite Valley Lodge if you’re visiting during peak season. There’s no official cost or wait. Just tip the attendant a few bucks for saving you time & hassle. There’s a shuttle stop right next to the parking lot that can help you get to the areas you most want to see in the park.
  6. Napa Valley – duh! 🍷 Hire a driver. Bring one of your own. Take the Wine Train. Whatever you do, be prepared to get drunk some of the best wine produced in our country. With so little time, it can be hard to choose, but you can’t go wrong visiting Peju Winery or Domaine Chandon.
  7. Take the hour-long, student-led walking tour of Stanford University. The institution has an interesting history and beautiful, high-tech campus.
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  8. Take the 17-mile scenic drive along the Monterrey peninsula. Catch a glimpse of the famed Pebble Beach golf course and enjoy the scenic stop-offs featuring animated sea lions ands lone cypress trees.
  9. Explore Oakland – shout out to the Bay area! it’s come a long way from it’s notorious past. Check out Merritt Lake and try you best at picking out your favorite street art and local eateries. Venture out and see why it’s also affectionately known as “smoakland.”
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  10. Attend a sporting event, as there are plenty of venues to visit! Cheer for the reigning NBA champs, the Golden State Warriors, at Oracle Arena. Root, root, root for the home team at AT&T Park (SF Giants) or Alameda Coliseum (Oakland A’s and Raiders)…. and be one of the last to see the Raiders score a touchdown before moving to Vegas. You can also catch the SF 49ers live at Levi’s Stadium.

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