Saturday, October 02, 2010

Pier 39

For a first-time visitor in San Francisco, California, Pier 39/Embarcadero/Fisherman's Wharf is one of the must see places. A word of warning, the place is really crowded with tourists. I believe the crowd makes the place unique and jolly; and for that I think that's one of the reasons why many visit this place. Of course there a lot of other reasons why Pier 39 is most visited by tourists...there are just so many things that you can feast your eyes and palate. 
Pier 39 is situated right along San Francisco Bay. It offers a very good view to Alcatraz and the Golden Gate Bridge. In Pier 39, here you can also find ferry or boat services for a day tour to Alcatraz. Souvenir shopping is not a problem as there are a lot of shops that carry knick knacks, shirts, caps, and mini replicas of famous San Francisco attractions. Food is not a concern as well; fast food and fine dining restaurants are abundant. There are also several shops that sell feel-good food from churros, chocolates, ice cream, etc. Clam chowder is a must try and don't pass the opportunity to visit Ghirardelli Square, there you will find the yummiest Ghirardelli chocolates. You don't also have to look far for entertainment; there are street performers, an Aquarium of the Bay, Madame Tussuad's wax museum, a magic/comedy show, carousel for kids, a caricaturist, and one of the must-see are the sun-bathing seals/sea lions.
Spend a day at Pier 39 to make the most out of it, plan out your activities and logistics. Free parking is difficult to get by and paid parking are quite expensive. If you are from Marin and other Northern counties, it's better to take a ferry from San Rafael or Larkspur. If you are a tourist lodging at any of the hotels in San Francisco, it's better to take a MUNI or any of the cable cars.

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