Tours of the West Coast USA are often overpriced, and you end up missing more than you actually see, so decided to see if I could put something together cheaper myself. Before putting my plan into action, I secured cheap flights through Skyscanner. We would fly into San Francisco for four days and will then fly into Vegas for five days. Now the fun part begins, how much can we squeeze into a ten-day adventure?
As we were not planning on spending too much time in our hotel and the City is notoriously expensive, our requirements were quite basic. A clean room in a good location with free Wi-Fi and breakfast were top of the list and Cornell Hotel de France fitted the bill perfectly.
Our perfect base was within walking distance to Powell Street, Chinatown, etc. but my favorite part of the hotel was how it oozes character.
Dylan’s Famous City Tour
As we only had a few days to spare in San Francisco, we didn’t have time to get our bearings so decided to book Dylan’s Famous Tour, and it was probably the best decision we could have made. On one day, we get to see everything the city has to offer and even had a chance to escape the hustle and bustle to spend over an hour in Muir Woods National Park.
The tour covered Fisherman’s Wharf, Chinatown, City Hall, Twin Peaks, The Mission, The Castro, Pacific Heights, Presidio, Golden Gate Bridge, Fort Point and Tenderloin. It was the perfect introduction to San Francisco and enabled us to see where we would like to return to and soak up the vibe.
Although the tour is a little pricey, there was an offer at the time that gave us a discounted bike rental.
Bike Across the Golden Gate Bridge to Sausalito
High on my bucket list was to cycle across the Golden Gate Bridge and head down to Sausalito. A little research revealed that it would be a steady 9-mile ride and downhill getting there, but getting back is a little on the steep side.
We were faced with two options.
1. Cycle down to Sausalito and then face the challenging ride back
2. Cycle down and get the ferry back.
We chose an alternative and hired electric bikes, which many will consider cheating, but we loved every minute of it. I must confess that it felt good to glide past people effortlessly while they were swearing and sweating on the big climb back.
If the weather is good, I cannot recommend cycling down to Sausalito enough. Cycling across the iconic Golden Gate bridge not once but twice is a memory that will stay with you forever, and Sausalito is incredibly beautiful too.
San Francisco Movie Sights Tour
As a film buff with strict time constraints, we decided to go on the San Francisco Movie Sights Tour. The 3-hour tour includes clips from over 50 of the most famous movies filmed in San Francisco. Actors-turned-guides lead you on this interactive city tour, as they match clips with locations right outside the bus’ windows and share their wealth of San Francisco and cinema knowledge.