When my boys were little, I never had the urge to travel. I am sure that in part it was because we had never traveled as a family growing up and my mother always made me slightly fearful of travel. However, when my boys got older (after high school) I started to think that I had really held them back from seeing the world (the world, that’s funny…..heck even just the US). I found that I greatly regretted that. After Bruce (my husband) was diagnosed with multiple myeloma in 2013, I really felt a panic that we hadn’t made all these “story book memories” from past trips with our kids. I figured there was only one way to fix that and that was to just do it, get out and travel! So, I vowed that at least once a year we would plan a trip and go somewhere.
So, when we took our first real trip in 2014 to San Francisco, I was a REALLY naive traveler. Unprepared is an understatement. We had no itinerary and I neglected to even secure tickets to tourist attractions (duh), such as ALCATRAZ (thankfully we found some last minute!).
I learned a lot on this trip like:
- always get a VRBO because one (large) hotel room with 4 people was still too small.
- get all the tickets that you need for area attractions ahead of time.
- bring clothing for the climate, don’t assume that because it’s California it’s WARM (by the ocean).
But regardless of my inexperience, we had a great time! We are not seasoned travelers but of all of our whopping 4 trips thus far, this is my favorite!
Here we are at the Golden Gate Bridge, I was so excited to see this that I actually had butterflies in my stomach! History was never my favorite in school but I remember learning about what it took to make this amazing structure. It is unbelievably windy and I didn’t realize how chilly it would be by the ocean even though it was in August!
Lombard Street, also at the top of my list of scenic stops! This street has always intrigued me and it didn’t disappoint. Breathtaking views and such rich culture.
My husband Bruce had just finished chemo for multiple myeloma before the trip and I remember our son Darien walking behind him pushing him up the hill to get to the top of Lombard Street. Bruce was a trooper on this trip!
We stayed close to the Fisherman’s wharf. We walked along the wharf several times enjoying the shops and restaurants.
San Francisco Botanical Garden is like a living museum inside of Golden Gate Park.
Downtown San Francisco
Alcatraz I was worried we wouldn’t get here, as I said, I neglected to get the tickets before hand. But we found some at a reasonable last minute price! THIS WAS THE HIGHLIGHT OF THE TRIP! It was surreal to see the same prison that housed famous prisoners like Al Capone.
San Francisco Bay Breathtakingly awesomely beautiful!
Some favorite restaurants:
The Hop on and Hop off bus was a hit!
This was a great “beginner” trip for us, as it is very tourist friendly. We definitely need to go back as we saw just a small part of what San Francisco has to offer. It was a HUGE hit with everyone! A family favorite and some great memories!