Last year, my super-brilliant older sister (aka the "future doctor" in our family) had the chance to present her study on smoking cessation at a conference in San Francisco. This was a golden opportunity for me to cross yet another thing off my travel bucket list: visiting a Californian beach. Although it was early March and Ocean Beach was still frigid, I was a happy little snowbird.
Rolling waves at Ocean Beach.
As San Francisco is home to one of my fave makeup brands (Benefit Cosmetics), I was naturally eager to go. Intrigued by the plentiful Asian cuisine, culture and sunshine, we escaped the Canadian cold and headed to the land of sunshine and cablecars (not "trolleys" as we mistakenly called them).
Sutro Ruin in San Francisco. A beautiful escape.
While I didn't end up going to the Benefit flagship store, San Francisco is still one of my top cities. Here are the top 5 things I loved about San Francisco:
1. Super friendly people. Cars actually slowed down when you crossed the street and locals were eager to help us with directions.
2. PALM trees. I'm Canadian. I'm obsessed with palm trees since we can't see them outside conservatories.
3. Sutro Baths/Ruins. The Sutro Ruins are the site of a failed bathhouse built in 1896 and destroyed by fire in 1966.
4. Tasty food. Everywhere we went the food was amazing. I especially liked the restaurants on Market Street and in Chinatown. Union Square had a few gems and the seafood in Fisherman's Wharf was divine.
5. Cable cars. Commonly called "trolleys". Bit of a tourist trap but they're a novel way to get around the city. On board, the cable cars feel like a less intense roller coaster ride. Kids love it.