If you are adventurous and creative like me, San Francisco may be the perfect vacation destination for you. Apart from giant red bridges and haunting old prisons, the city is a wondrous beauty full of many sites to see and things to do. What's also cool is that there are so many different personalities all over, no one is exactly the same at all. I can also tell those personalities apart just by looking at everyone's fashion sense, it really says a lot! Of course, I am not one to judge right away.
Despite the loss of the Cleveland Cavaliers against Golden State a few weeks ago, I was still willing to visit SF and have a much-needed vacation. Also my dad had to go for a fundraiser which his business was supporting, so we really didn't have a choice. I love California and I was ready to explore a new city. Plus, the Full House series takes place in SF which is another reason to want to visit!
My dad got two tickets upgraded to first class, so he let my mom and I have those seats while he sat in the section behind ours to watch a few movies and do work. It wasn't my first time experiencing first class, but it definitely has so far been the best one. Now that I'm 21, I got to order some white wine while watching The LEGO Batman Movie and Beauty and the Beast, as well as reading Enchantment: The Life of Audrey Hepburn by Donald Spotto.
What's funny is that there are times when people think I'm older and don't ID me at all or there's people who ID because they think I'm fifteen-years old. During this trip, especially getting onto airplanes, many people thought I was still a teen. Well, the Neutrogena must be working very well!
We arrived in SF around 10 PM (West Coast time), and we took an Uber to our the Fairmount we were staying at. It was kind of weird to be the city with the basketball team that beat us during the NBA Finals, but thankfully no one recognized us and booed us for being from Cleveland.
I was amazed at how fancy and big the Fairmount was, by far the fanciest and prettiest hotel I ever stayed at! It kind of looks extra, don't you think?
What also fascinated me about the hotel, besides a huge breakfast buffet and a relaxing bath tub for nighttime baths, was the amount of history that was held inside. There were so many portraits of famous people, both dead and alive, who have paid a visit. It also showed a picture from 1906 after the huge earthquake, which was one of the few buildings of San Francisco that survived. How incredible is that! As a history lover, my mom was so obsessed with the hotel's beauty and treasures, as I'm sure many guests are.
To my surprise, San Francisco is actually very chilly for most of the year, even during the summer. I could only pack one pair of shorts, and then I had to pack jeans and leggings. I wish it wasn't so cold, but I was more excited to explore the city than to worry about the weather.
After breakfast at the Buena Vista, most famous for their Irish coffee (which I probably would have enjoyed if it weren't for the whiskey, but I guess it's a traditional thing), we took a walk around Pier 39 and Fisherman's Wharf. I was really hoping to see all the sea lions resting on the docks, but there were only a few because most of the them were out north in the Pacific Ocean for breeding season. On the bright note, we got to see a few!
We also walked the plaza of the pier which greatly resembled Santa Monica Pier in LA, but more clean and less sketchy. The food stands and flowers add a very pleasurable touch.
If I had to choose what my absolute part of my trip was, I would definitely have to say it was touring the Walt Disney Family Museum. My family and I have always been Disney fans and I've always thought of Walt Disney himself as one of my role models, so visiting his museum was a must on our to-do list.
I still curious though, why is Walt Disney's museum located in SF and not in LA or even Orlando? Did Walt Disney and his family enjoy visiting the Bay Area or was it just a random spot that his succeeders decided to use? I'm currently trying to figure out the true answer, and you can comment if you happen to know it!
Each floor was very educational and brought back many fun memories from my childhood. I loved learning more about Walt's life, from when he grew up in Missouri with a passion for drawing to when he made Disneyland a reality in 1955 (which you can see an amazing model of down in the picture below). Not only did he bring happiness and imagination to the world, but he was also a family man who put his loved ones first. I truly admire him for everything that he worked hard for.
I want to say thank you to Mr. Disney for the legacy he left. I hope he's smiling while looking down and from heaven at what has become of his company!
One of the most popular exhibits at the moment was "Awakening Beauty", a special tribute to Eyvind Earle who was the art director for Sleeping Beauty. It showed all of his beautiful and colorful paintings, prior to working with Walt Disney Studios. My favorite thing about Sleeping Beauty is the scenery and colors, so I was so happy to see the original artwork in person.
And of course, it's impossible to go to San Francisco without riding a cable car! To clarify, the car was not actually moving in the picture below. This specific one is always parked on a street near Buena Vista so that tourists can hop on it and snap some pictures, which is what I exactly did. And of course, we eventually had to ride a moving one to get the true experience.
Another favorite site of mine to see in the Bay City, obviously, is the Golden Gate Bridge aka one of the most iconic architectures in the world. Thankfully, we got to go on a perfectly sunny day which is very rare in SF, no fog in the sky! I wasn't even nervous at all walking over the bridge, except for when my mom took pictures with her phone and I was worried about her dropping it. Oh, the things millennials stress about ...
One of the best things about traveling is the feeling of sensation and gratitude. I felt those exact two feelings when seeing the Golden Gate Bridge up close in person. It was so beautiful and breathtaking, I couldn't even believe it with my own eyes. It just reminded me of how truly blessed I am to have amazing opportunities like this, and how I should be thankful for the ones I have had as well as the ones that are to come.
Unfortunately, we didn't have time to take a tour at Alcatraz, which my mom and I really wanted to do. On a bright note, we at least got to see it from a far which was enough. Besides, I'm not very fond of the tours that involve a headpiece and listening to an old guy go on about every historical fact in detail ...
We also got to look around Chinatown, which apparently is one of the biggest ones in the country. Things got a little exhausting; however, when my mom and some of her friends deciding to walk from the pier back to the hotel, which meant we had to walk up and down the extremely steep street hills of the city. I didn't choose very good shoes to walk in, so I blame myself for that (but hey, style triumphs pain, am I right?) So to distract myself from exhaustion and my weary feet, I took some time to take some cool pictures of cool street signs which I am a sucker for.
Did I even mention that we visited Saucilito for a few hours? It was a very nice city, it kind of reminded me of Laguna Beach. We actually walked along the highway just to get there. Talk about rebellious! It was totally worth it when we got a bite to eat, refreshing drinks, and an incredible view of the bay.
For our last night in SF, my dad and his company had a special dinner party at a country club hosted by the City of Hope, an organization for cancer treatment. My dad, mom, our friends, and I all went to the ceremony together at the beautiful country club for a lovely dinner, friendly conversations, inspiring speeches from hard-working employees, and an auction that raised a ton of money!
San Francisco did not disappoint me one bit, and I already can't wait to go back there again someday. Hopefully the next time we return will be after Cleveland wins another championship and beats the Warriors in another round of the NBA Finals ...
Next stop, Napa!