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July 08, 2011


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There are many special places in SF, but my favorite would have to be tartine...

I love San Francisco, because it is a city that tries to make the the little everyday moments in your life unique and special.

From your first cup of coffee in the morning: Gorgeous sightglass coffee on 7th and Folsom http://sightglasscoffee.com/about (Justin and Jerard, you did an amazing job!)

To grabbing a drink with a friend afterwork:Mr. Lew's win win bar and grand sazerac emporium (what other city has a willy wonky meets chinatown named bar?)

To taking your kid out for ice cream on the weekend: http://smittenicecream.com/home/Home.html

Or maybe perhaps tucking your kid in at night: http://www.calacademy.org/events/sleepovers/

Just amazing.

Oh yes, Barbary Lane please and don't forget City Lights Bookstore. Both places of pilgrimage.

Thanks for all the brilliant recommendations! I'm nearly at the end of the drawing phase and I've included as much of your info as I could (I hope!). I'll post photos soon. Thanks again!

Yay! I've been hoping for a San Francisco map :)

Here is my list of reasons I live here, and the places/activities everyone should experience...farmer's markets (Ferry Building, Ft Mason, Divisadero, Irving, Alemany), the stomach dropping hills in Russian Hill, riding a Vespa around town, Asian food on Clement St, the parks (the Presidio, Golden Gate Park, Lands End, Sutro Heights), military battery ruins along the ocean side of the city, bon fires on Ocean Beach, surfers everywhere (kite surfers, wind surfers & traditional long boards), lines of fishermen in the morning on Baker Beach, Victorian homes, pride flag at the intersection of Castro & Market, the botanical gardens, the small restaurants (Pizzetta on 23rd @ Clement, Outerlands on Judah @ 45th), free swing dancing lessons in Golden Gate Park near the Conservatory of Flowers on Sundays, Off the Grid at Ft Mason (a pop-up collection of food trucks every Friday night)...this list could go on forever, so let me know if you want more!!!

Also, a great book/atlas that was published last year about San Francisco is "Infinite City" by Rebecca Solnit. It contains 15 beautifully illustrated maps that I think you guys would appreciate!!

I was born in SF and grew up down the Peninsula. My favorite childhood memory of the city was going to see the buffalo in Golden Gate Park. It always made me feel like anything could be possible if a herd of buffalo could live in the middle of a beautiful city...

the castro's seward street cement slides would be a great addition to your map! love (and miss) that fantastic city!

Some of my favorites SF hidden jewels:
- remembering Hitchcock's "Vertigo" at Mission Dolores
- discovering the charming Potrero Hill neighborhood
- having a picnic, admiring the gorgeous views and the lavish community garden at Fort Mason
- Swimming in the Bay in front of the 1930's WPA building at the SF Maritime National Historic Park
- drinking tea above the Yerba Buena gardens at Samovar Tea Lounge (amazing views on the Moma building by Mario Botta and the Jewish Contemporary Museum by Daniel Libeskind)
- walking down Telegraph Hill, from Coit Tower to Embarcadero through the hidden gardens of Filbert St or Greenwich St (pedestrians only)
- sailing on the Bay
- looking at the City and the Golden Gate from Cavallo Point
- standing above the whole city at Twin Peaks
- watching views one the city from the tower of Herzog & de Meuron's state of the art architecture at the de Young Museum in the Golden Gate Park
- admiring the Golden Gate Bridge from below at Fort Point
- sneaking in the Institute of Arts in North Beach to admire the architecture and see the student artists at work

We live in Noe Valley, mostly a neighbourhood where you live if you have either a dog or a baby !!! So many strollers on 24th street !!!

The restaurant "Mama's" in North Beach, on Washington square, is the best brunch of the city. You have to queue though !

Baker beach is THE nicest beach of SF, right under the GGB.

Point Bonita on the other side of the GGB. Nice view of the city.

Coit Tower, in North Beach, after you went up the Filbert Steps.

The Cable Car is cute, even if very very touristique.

Aquatic Park, in front of Ghiraldelli Chocolate Factory. People are actually swimming in the bay, sometimes with no wet suit on !

You have to ride a bike to Sausalito, and take the ferry back ! It's great.

I don't really know what you are looking for ! But if you have questions... I'm happy to help.

Coit Tower is a must see.
It is shaped like the end of a firehose nozzle and looms over North Beach.
From the hills by the tower, you can hear the sea lions at Fishermans Wharf barking.

Please visit the SF Ferry Building.
Old trolly cars roll past in front, and ferries leave from the back. The building profile is iconic and the clock tower chimes every 30 mins. The revamped interior is packed full of coffee shops and wonderful foodie places.

At Ocean Beach, the drive is magestic and the waves will crash on the sand. But when the tide is out, you can find lots of sand dollars and squiggly seaweed.

Cable cars are awesome to hop on and off of.
They will take you from the valley of the city's Financial district through the hilly wonders of Chinatown, where the buildings have roofs carved and curved, and you won't go hungry.

Drive down Lombard street, which is only one of a few very wiggly, zig-zaggy strees in SF.

Check out some of the secret stairways walks in SF, then have a coffee in Triest in North Beach, and while in the Mission, have an salted caramel ice cream at Bi-Rite, a pizza at Delfina and a reviving coffee and sandwich at Tartine. These are not to be missed.

Have fun here.

SF is such a great city... ok, even if this street doesn't really exist, Barbary Lane on Russian Hill is sooooo San Francisco to me that i hope you will have it on your map!

bonnes vacances

For the best chinese food, there's a little hole-in-the-wall restaurant called House of Nanking that always has a line out the door. Fabulous food, but be prepared to share tables with strangers and you definitely wont be going for the ambiance. But the food...to die for!

Thanks ALL so very much. These are absolutely wonderful, and we'll add as many as we can.....might be a few too many!! ;-)

My boyfriend and I just visited San Francisco (alas we did not see the bridge due to pea-soup fog!) and had a lovely time. My favorite three places were Chinatown, the Buena Vista Cafe, and Mamas. Chinatown in SF can't be beat. We went with a friend of ours from Hong Kong and it was so fun just to stroll around feeling like you're in a different country, not understanding anyone, and looking at all of the kitschy things for sale. The Buena Vista Cafe is incredibly charming - the Irish coffee was divine, according to my boyfriend, and I had a coffee with brandy and Kahlua. The bartender was dressed in his finest and the atmosphere is such a throwback. Lastly, the typical 30-60 minute wait for expensive brekkie at Mamas on Washington Square was well worth it. The menu is creative (albeit pricey), the decor charming, and the service smooth.

I absolutely love your maps and have been reading your blog for several months now :) best of luck with your SF map!

Ah, I LOVE San Francisco - it's a long, long time since I've been (unfortunately) but we loved going to see Beach Blanket Babylon and visiting Citylights book shop.

San Francisco is an amazing city! I lived there for 8 years after college and my husband and I would still be there if we could have afforded to comfortably raise a family there! Our favorite restaurant was Frascati on Russian Hill...definitely a neighborgood gem with the best bread pudding for dessert! Right next door to Frascati is the most amazing boutique called Atelier Des Modistes owned by designer Suzanne Hanley...that is where I had my wedding dress made and her store is magical and worth popping into if you're in the neighborhood.
The Marin Headlands are also wonderful for hikes, days at Stinson Beach are fantastic as well, the list goes on and on!

I love Mitchell's Ice Cream in the Mission District. http://www.mitchellsicecream.com/html/index.htm

My favorite flavor is Cantaloupe, which is a seasonal flavor during the summer months. On the few occasions that I've managed to wean myself from this flavor I've tried other flavors such as Dulce de leche, Peppermint Candy, and Espresso Toffee Crunch, but I always glance longingly back at Cantaloupe. This ice cream shop is one of my "must visit" places when I am in SF.
-Cindy Y.

I'm a resident of SF, and love (and have lived in) the vibrant mission district, with it's murals (http://www.precitaeyes.org/) and incredible culinary delights. Lombard Street, AKA the crookedest street, is a tourist favorite (though it's not ACTUALLY the curviest - that's Vermont street! http://bit.ly/njA1Ei). I also love the noisy and boisterous sea lions at Fisherman's wharf and the similarly rambunctious hipsters on a warm night in Dolores Park. Above all, don't forget the ubiquitous fog monster that creeps over Sutro tower to devour a warm day. Can you tell I love this city??? My husband and I fell in love and got married in San Francisco (on Treasure Island, actually), and I'm delighted to see your beautiful creation of my fair city!

We went to San Francisco for our honeymoon - a fantastic place. we loved discovering Colt tower - via the resident gardens, lots of lovely flowers all out in bloom -lots of roses - as we climbed the steps to the top.
oh i cant wait to see the new paper cut, i have all the others and this would be perfect for our wedding anniversary present (1st year = PAPER!).
Sarah and Ian

I LOVE San Francisco!

There's nothing better than a day spent at Crissy Field - a great dog-friendly park with a picturesque view of the Golden Gate Bridge.

If you're feeling touristy, head to the farmers market at The Ferry Building and check out the latest in game technology at LucasArts. Next, take a driving tour through Pacific Heights - Broadway is one of the country's most expensive streets - and Russian Hill - Lombard St. is the crookedest street around.

For dinner, indulge at Tyler Florence's Wayfare Tavern or the very chic Presidio Social Club. Dessert should include a sundae at Ghirardelli.


I love San Francisco! I was born in the Bay Area and visited my grandparents there every summer after we moved away. Some favorites: the Japanese Tea Garden in Golden State Park, riding the cable cars, Chinatown, Ghiradelli Square (chocolate!), Fisherman's Wharf.

The Exploratorium is a fantastic place to visit - and the building is beautiful (lots of interesting shapes to cut out!).

Looking forward to the map :) Maybe Amsterdam at some point in the future...?

We live in Berkeley, just outside of San Francisco. Our favorite place to go is Crissy Field. It is a fun beach to take the kids, really anytime of year.

Another favorite place is the renovated Ferry Building, with a wonderful Saturday morning farmer's market.

Last, on the Embarcadero, there is a fire station with a fireboat.
My two young boys love this fire station.

this is exciting - and sf is such a gorgeous city. my favorites are coit tower and i think it's buena vista park when the foxgloves and ceanothus are blooimg. of course not to be missed are tartine, chinatown and mission dolores. cheers!

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