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Davidpalmer

On my way

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Ok, one of my goals that I set for myself is that I want to visit atleast one new city every year, and more if Im able. I'll probably go by myself until I have a family of my own, because majority of people I know would just be into the clubs and hot spots for shopping, which is not why I want to visit these places. I not only want to learn the heart of the city, but visit all the musuems, historical spots, and whatever else there is to see that is wonderful in the city. The first place on my list is San Fran, which I will be heading to the probably around May 17th and stay for like 3-4 days. I was wondering though, where should I get a nice hotel at that isn't too expensive, but is still nice, and should I make reservations in advance. Also, can I get around the city with the mass transit, or will I need to get a rental car. Lastly, what places should I check out, and what are some of the local eateries. I was told to say away from Oakland is this a smart thing to do. What about San Jose?

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theres TONS to do in The Bay...u can go to fishermans wharf, wax museum, MOMA in sf, Height Ashbury...u could walk around Telegraph Ave in Berkley .....wine tasting in napa, goldengate bride,goldengate park ....u could catch a sharks game and do some fine shopping at santana row in san jose.....if ur in san jose, check out Henry's Highlife....good ribs there!!....in sf, u could around the city with MUNI or bart....u could take the caltrain to sj and get around san jose with the light rail. u dont have to stay away from oakland....oakland is a very misunderstood city...it has a very fine china town with a variety of tasty asian cuisines....jacklondon square in oakland is also a must.

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If you are only planning to stay for 3-4 days, I suggest you get a place as close to downtown San Francisco as possible. The Bay Area is really spread out, and the traffic can get pretty bad. You don't want to spend too much of your trip sitting in heavy traffic getting places.

Berkeley would be a good alternative if you can't find a place in SF. It's a great little city, and has a very unique urban feel with lots of things to do and interesting characters to keep you entertained. BART, which is our most efficient public transportation system, would only take you a few minutes to get to downtown SF. Oakland is right next to Berkeley, and as mentioned earlier it is a very misunderstood city. Jack London Square in Oakland would be a nice place to stay, as well. You can get to the BART station relatively easily from there.

I grew up in San Jose and still live there currently. I love my town, but honestly, for a tourist with only a few days to see and do things, you are better off in SF or across the bridge(Berkeley or Oakland). San Jose is a great place to live, but doesn't offer as much for the tourist. It's about 45 miles from SF and Oakland, so it takes a little bit of an effort to get to those places, and public transporation is horribly inadequate.

The last time I rented a hotel in SF, I found a really good deal for a small no-name hotel just north of Union Sqare. It was an older hotel, but clean and well maintained. It was about 5 years ago, and the weekend rate was around $80/night. The rates have probably gone up, but I'm sure you can still find a pretty good deal.

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I looked at some hotels online real quick inbetween classes today and it seemed to me all the hotels downton was expensive, well atleast to me. They were like $185 a night and more. I found a hotel/motel that charges $45 a night which looked nice going by the pictures that was located about 2 miles away from the airport and that was like 15 minutes from downtown. I think I will stay there. I was not really planning on going to San Jose, but maybe I will go to Oakland. I already know that I will not be able to see everything I would like, but I can't affored to stay there to long. How exactly does BART work. Do I pay everytime I get on or off the system or do I pay one price for a pass that will take care of me for those 3 days.

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I looked at some hotels online real quick inbetween classes today and it seemed to me all the hotels downton was expensive, well atleast to me. They were like $185 a night and more. I found a hotel/motel that charges $45 a night which looked nice going by the pictures that was located about 2 miles away from the airport and that was like 15 minutes from downtown. I think I will stay there. I was not really planning on going to San Jose, but maybe I will go to Oakland. I already know that I will not be able to see everything I would like, but I can't affored to stay there to long. How exactly does BART work. Do I pay everytime I get on or off the system or do I pay one price for a pass that will take care of me for those 3 days.

Where are you looking for hotels? I just checked on Travelocity, and there was a hotel in the Union Square area for ~$90 a night. Yes, there are expensive ones there, but there were still a couple in the $100 range. I also checked the Moscone/South of Market area and there were quite a number of places there for less than $100. Mind you, this is not the nicest area of the city, but it is downtown and within a few blocks of all the sights. San Francisco is tiny(7miles x 7miles), so nothing is really far. It doesn't sound like you will be spending much time in your room, so this area might be a good option if price is your biggest concern.

I also checked the Golden Gate Bridge/Marina area and there were also quite a few places there for less than $100. This area is a couple of miles from downtown, but it's probably the most beautiful/scenic part of the city and you won't be lacking for things to do/see there. Getting around from this area to downtown is easy.

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Where are you looking for hotels? I just checked on Travelocity, and there was a hotel in the Union Square area for ~$90 a night. Yes, there are expensive ones there, but there were still a couple in the $100 range. I also checked the Moscone/South of Market area and there were quite a number of places there for less than $100. Mind you, this is not the nicest area of the city, but it is downtown and within a few blocks of all the sights. San Francisco is tiny(7miles x 7miles), so nothing is really far. It doesn't sound like you will be spending much time in your room, so this area might be a good option if price is your biggest concern.

I also checked the Golden Gate Bridge/Marina area and there were also quite a few places there for less than $100. This area is a couple of miles from downtown, but it's probably the most beautiful/scenic part of the city and you won't be lacking for things to do/see there. Getting around from this area to downtown is easy.

Yeah, I saw some of the same things you just mentioned. I will probably get an hotel in Union Square, because it seems to be so close to everything that I think it would be just right. Im looking at being in San Fran for 3 days and will go to Oakland for 1 day, just to check it out. I didn't realize SF was so small.

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SF IS my favorite American city! So much so, that I spent an entire month there last spring and still went back in the Fall for 2 weeks (partly to visit relatives) and still found fun, new and interesting things to do in the city.

If you can find a clean safe decent hotel for around $100, you've done well. Most SF hotel rooms are small and in the older ones the walls can be thin, but who cares, you aren't there to spend time in the room.

While I'm sure you'll visit Fisherman's Wharf and Union Square, you won't find the REAL SF in those places. There you'll find folks from back East and the Midwest. The real SF is found in her neighborhoods, her local cafes/restauarants and in the diversity of her people. Explore the neighborhoods if you can: Castro, Chinatown(real C-town is Stockton St., not Grant,) Japantown mall, Pac Heights, trendy Marina area, Noe (pronounced KNOWEE) Valley, and even the Sunset and Richmond districts have interesting places. Also try and eat at a few non-tourist restaurants. If you want suggestions, just ask me.

I had my car there for the month, but only used it to leave the city to go to the wine country or to visit relatives in SJ and East Bay. The entire time I used MUNI and loved it. It's very safe and easy to use, just remember service becomes very limited after 1am. I'd recommend buying one of those tourist 3 day passes which are good for buses, the underground, the trolleys and cable cars. Keep in mind the cable cars are now $5 (I'm right on that locales???) ONE-WAY w/NO transfers. A little tip, the California cable car line is less crowded than the Mason/Powell lines.

People will try and scare you about SF's homeless problem. While it does have a large homeless population I found most of them to be fine. My suggestion is just to be nice to them and treat them w/respect. That doesn't mean you have to give them money. If I gave them anything it was food I had on me. Many times I'd sit on the back of the bus and just chat w/many of them.

A must to visit on Saturday mornings is the Farmer's Market at the Ferry Bldg. Make it your first stop on Sat. Morning for b'fast and browsing.

Oakland's J.L. Square is a must like other's have said and so is Berkeley.

If you're into wine, Napa and Sonoma are awesome. If you can get a view of the Bay area from the Berkeley hills or better yet Mt. Tam, there you will really see the beauty of the area.

Just don't forget to bring your long pants, long sleeves, good walking shoes and a jacket. It was way cold by Florida standards, but refreshing.

But most important to bring to SF is an OPEN MIND. Open your mind and your eyes and get off the beaten path and I'm sure you too will fall in love w/SF!

Any questions you have to help you plan your trip, I'll be glad to help you out! I'm going back for 2 to 4 weeks this fall.

Dang it! I wrote all that just to find out the dude's banned. FUDGE! :angry:

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