Back from our latest San Francisco adventure, I have to admit that I am exhausted. Perhaps it was the many hills I climbed (really, those streets are steep!) or the fact Sophia was so off her schedule, that we didn’t get the rest of the afternoon nap that we are both accustomed to. And I do mean we on this point. I use nap time to regroup and focus on me time, something that did not happen on this trip. But we still had a blast. San Francisco is a great city, even in the rain we had for three days. We still explored and walked, despite the rainfall and fog. I gotta say though, that fog is beautiful.
We visited a playground every day – rain or shine. Thankfully, there was an indoor playground or play area to visit during those rainy days. Or the rain stopped long enough for me to wipe down a slide with one the the hotel’s trusty towels I carried around for that very purpose. Sophia loved having time to run around and play with other kids. I was grateful for a chance to sit occasionally and even chatted up some local moms, which was nice.
Our first night found us having dinner at one of our favorite’s – the Woodhouse Fish Company. We had clam chowder, oysters, crab cakes, and cod fish. Yummy!
When we weren’t playing at playgrounds, we explored different areas of the city. Sophia and I walked all through Chinatown (walking all the way from our hotel at Union Square) up to North Beach here we ate lunch at Cafe DeLucchi. Lunch was tasty – spinach raviolis in Gorgonzola cream sauce and bread (Sophia only wanted bread). Chinatown was just jammed packed with people at the markets.
We had dinner with Jon (who had giving a talk at AGU that day) and a friend at New Delhi – a place we went last year mostly because of it’s close proximity to our hotel. While the food was pretty good, it was a bit pricey and the service was not great. We will likely not be going back next time.
The next day was raining but it didn’t stop Sophia and me from catching the F trolley out to the Castor, where we visited the Randall Museum (which was free and lots of fun) and the having lunch at Ti Couz, a french crepery. I do recommend taking the steep short cut through the playground rather than walking the long steep walk up State Street, which was never ending. Escpecially if you are carrying your child. Sophia slept on me all the way down the hill and over to near Mission Delores, where the restaurant is located. I had a bowl of vegetable chowder, which was great. The crepes are huge, so one could have easily been split between two, if only Sophia wanted something other than bread. Again.
Jon was able to join us all weekend long. We walked through Chinatown again, visiting a different section than the one I visited the day before – and found a playground, which Sophia thought was great. We eventually caught a bus over to the Exploritorium. Sophia had fun exploring, but we didn’t get much time to read the exhibits before she moved on.
We walked along the beach, with foggy views of the Golden Gate Bridge, before catching a bus over to Fisherman’s Wharf. We visited Ghiradelli Square, where Jon and Sophia enjoyed the free samples of peppermint bark (Momma only likes the milk chocolate caramels). Then we caught the F trolley down to the Ferry Building to buy some Acme bread and Cowgirl Creamery cheese before heading back to our hotel to rest before dinner out at the Oriental Pearl. Sophia slept through most of dinner, which was tasty and had huge portions.
Sunday, our last day, found us and out the door early, heading back to Golden Gate Park to the Academy of Sciences. It was a bit early for the Academy, so we visited the de Young museum to see the art, which worked great until Sophia woke up (I had been carrying her again). We went up to the tower, where she run around charming people and allow us to see the amazing City views. We didn’t get to see most of the museum and didn’t pay the special price to see art from Musee D’Orsey , but the views from the tower were worth the $10 general admission price.
The Academy opens late on Sundays, something I did not realize (due to the lack of sleep), so we had some time to kill. Sophia helped everyone out by making sure they knew the floors were a bit wet.
After getting in, the rain forest and aquariums were a hit, but the best place was the Little Explorer’s Cove, which had an actual ship to play in and a TON of toys. A hot lunch was had at the Academy Cafe – many choices available. We had Moroccan Lemon Chicken with mashed potatoes and brown rice and a steam vegetable bun for Sophia, who naturally only ate a peanut butter sandwich I packed for her.
After making our way back to the hotel, I knew I didn’t want to go far for dinner. We made our way one block down to Johnny Foley’s Irish Pub. Good beer, fresh fish, and crayons – what more would anyone ask for on their last night in the City?