Charles Nucci: What to Do on Your Next Visit to San Francisco
San Francisco is without a doubt one of the top destination cities on the planet. It is filled with amazing and one of a kind tourist attractions that are iconic and very memorable. The truth is that there are so many, you may not to get to see them all on one trip.
A smart idea is to do some research and then put a list of things to do and places to visit before you come. This way you will be sure to get to see the things that fit your interests most and not be disappointed about missing anything you really wanted to see.
When you make this list you will notice that you have a choice between culture and history, breathtaking scenic places, fun and exciting adventures, relaxing escapes, and of course a broad choice of delicious international food.
The city is ideal to visit any time of year because of its mild weather and inviting people and when you come expect to see many other tourists filling the streets. Here are some of the city’s top attractions.
The Iconic Alcatraz Island
Even though it officially closed in 1963, the country’s most famous prison is still Alcatraz. This island that sits in the middle San Francisco Bay once housed the most hardened criminals across the country, and was built as an escape-proof housing facility. The rocky cliffs of the island combined with the swirling waters of the bay were an ample deterrent, because although 36 prisoners tried to escape from the island during its 36 years of operation, none were successful. Alcatraz Island is the site of the oldest operating lighthouse on the West Coast of the United States,
Today, Alcatraz Island is part of the Golden Gate National Parks Conservatory. it is open for tours most days of the year and visitors can reach the island in a little under 15 minutes by ferry ride from Pier 33, located between the San Francisco Ferry Building and Fisherman’s Wharf, San Francisco. There are tours of the prison and visitors can also see the rock pools, abundant aquatic life and abundance of migratory birds that visit the island.
San Francisco’s Chinatown
There are Chinatowns in many of the great US cities including New York, Chicago and Los Angeles, but none are as iconic and grand as the oldest Chinatown in the US, San Francisco’s Chinatown. This neighborhood is a full 20 square blocks, dates back to 1848 and is a mecca for all things Chinese. Within this area you will find living more than 15.000 Chinese many of whom work here and all who eat, and play here.
The beginnings of the neighborhood go back to the gold rush days in California when workers were brought in to assist in removing the metal. Others came to make their fortune and many actually struck it rich. The community today is filled with temples, restaurants, hotels, museums, and attractions many of which are housed in buildings built architecturally like mainland China.
Each year visitors can find hundreds of festivals, parties and other events going on in Chinatown and the Chinese Historical Society which is based here is a hub where visitors can go to learn what is going on in the community. Come and have the best Chinese food in the country and delight in the cultural experiences.
Two more popular attractions are the Golden Gate Bridge and Fisherman’s Wharf which both help to give San Francisco its unique flavor. You can visit day or night and don’t forget to bring your camera because you don’t have to be a professional photographer like Charles Nucci to take great picture here.