Staff Favorites: San Francisco
It's usually hard to compare apples and oranges, which is what you're basically doing when you compare cities. But to my mind, San Francisco is such a standout that I feel no compunction saying it's the best in the U.S. It's like you can't logically compare brussels sprouts to a fullcourse gourmet meal, but you'd pick the gourmet meal every time.
It's big enough to keep me entertained for days, perhaps years, yet small enough that I don't walk around feeling disoriented. Food is fantastic, views are amazing, it's on a human scale, and within a short drive or train ride to some of the most beautiful small towns and coastal areas on Earth. What's not to like?
No matter how many times I visit, I never lose my enthusiasm about a repeat visit. My top three favorite activities:
1. Simply strolling neighborhoods, inlcuding Chinatown, Haight Ashbury, the waterfront.
2. Biking or hiking around Angel Island or Golden Gate Park and the Presidio.
I'll need help with hotels -- who's got favorites? Basically I choose a different neighborhood for each visit and pick whatever hotel has a deal at that time. I do like Harbor Court Hotel on the waterfront, where rooms start at about $179 a night.
Restaurants: For dim sum, Ton Kiang (5821 Geary Blvd) is a bit out of the way and not in Chinatown, but amazing. The Slanted Door, a Vietnamase place that's more upscale and thus more expensive than your average Vietnamese restaurant, is not to be missed. Located on the water at the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market, it has great views and is a fun place to stroll around while waiting for a table.
I used to love several Cambodian restaurants but haven't had time to seek out that cuisine in the city since I lived near there in the 1989. Anyone had a great Cambodian meal in San Fran more recently?
Favorite places to stay and things to do? Share here.
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