By CISL SF student Roman Barufke, Germany
So, you’ve got a free afternoon with no homework and don’t know what to do? Well, there are a lot of opportunities in this wonderful city. Today, I am going to recommend a walk through the northern part of San Francisco, which starts at Washington Square, then goes to Coit Tower, through Lombard Street, and finally to Union Street. The walking tour starts at Washington Square. You can get there by bus or cable car.
Washington Square Park
This park is located in North Beach on Columbus Avenue. Even though it’s not a very big park, it’s a very good place to take a break, to have a picnic, or just to watch people walking by. If you go there, you definitely shouldn’t miss the Saints Peter and Paul Church. Completed in 1924, it is also known as “The Italian Cathedral of the West” and it’s worth to see it.
From Washington Square Park you can see Coit Tower and it’s only a few steps away. Built in 1933, Coit Tower became one of the most remarkable landmarks of the whole city, because this art deco monument is visible from a lot of different points in the city, and offers a great view from Telegraph Hill.
Take your time and wait in line for the elevator. Of course, you may have to wait up to 30 minutes and you have to pay a $7 entrance fee, but it is totally worth it! It offers a breathtaking view of the skyline of the Financial District, Fisherman’s Wharf, and to San Francisco’s best known sight, the Golden Gate Bridge.
After finishing your visit to Coit Tower, walk down Telegraph Hill Boulevard and you will walk directly into Lombard Street. From there you can see tight hairpin turns, which are seven blocks away. Between Hyde and Leavenworth Streets, the steepest part of this street, the path takes eight turns down the hill. These turns are decorated with very nice flower arrangements, which makes this hill a must-see in San Francisco.
Union Street may not attract as many tourists as Fisherman’s Wharf or Lombard Street, but this may also be one of the reasons why it is good place to go. Between Octavia Street and Steiner Street, you can find a lot of small shops, restaurants and bars. The street invites you to window shop. You’ll love all of the hole-in-the-wall options
All in all, this walking tour will take you about two hours, depending on how much time you spend picnicking, dining, and shopping. Don’t forget your camera, because there will be a lot of great opportunities to take some great pictures, especially from the top of Coit Tower.