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19 days to San Francisco!

May 4th, 2008 at 12:17 pm

My brother called me yesterday afternoon to finalize what my plans are for my week-long vacation. It had been talked about that maybe I'd use my grandma's station wagon - but as we discussed that idea, we realized that it would mean driving two hours to get to where the car is, then driving another six+ hours to get to where she lives, then before I'm ready to leave, I'd have to drive it back to where it belongs. That's a whole lot of driving - a whole lot of gas - and a whole lot of chances for me to get lost or have something happen to the car.

So . . we came up with a better plan.

I'll get into San Francisco on Friday night (May 23rd). I'll stay at the hotel through Monday morning. (Free tickets to San Francisco and back, plus 3 nights free hotel stay due to a trip my dad won.)

Then, on Monday, my brother and perhaps my sister in law (if she can get off work) will take the ferry over to San Fran and we'll spend the day there doing sights. (One place in particular - Ghiradelli's Chocolate store for a Hot Chocolate!) Then we'll take the ferry back to their car, and I'll spend the night at their house. (Get to meet their furbaby's and play their Wii!)

Then, on Tuesday my brother will drive me over to San Jose where my Aunt lives. I'll spend the night there.

Then on Wednesday I'll fly from San Jose to the Ontario airport where I'll catch a shuttle to my Grandma's house in Loma Linda. On Friday, I'll catch a shuttle to the airport, and fly from Ontario to the Oakland airport.

My brother will pick me up at the Oakland airport, and I'll again spend the night with them. Then Saturday afternoon he'll take me back to the San Francisco airport and I'll catch my plane back home.

Whew!

I've budgeted $400 for my trip. So far, between the two extra flights + 2 shuttle trips, I've already spent $207. But -- I was able to book my flights through mypoints.com which netted me 2 points per dollar + of course I used my rewards card, so that is an extra point per dollar.

My dad was supposed to go on this trip, but it is looking like he won't be able to go. So, he is going to take me to the airport on Friday, and probably pick me up again on the next Saturday. If that doesn't work out, then I found a shuttle that will pick me up from work, and take me home for $64 roundtrip. (Cheaper than parking at the airport for 8 days + gas.)

So at any rate - I'm going to have Saturday (24th) and Sunday (25th) in San Francisco all by myself. I'm hoping the hotel will have a nice fitness center and pool, but that won't take all my time. Smile

Any ideas of things I can do that won't cost much? (I'm not sure what hotel I'll be staying at yet - should know by the end of this week - I hope.) Also - any ideas on how I can keep my food costs down? What grocery stores would be easy to get to via bus or streetcar, etc?

8 Responses to “19 days to San Francisco!”

  1. Lady T Says:

    Iíve been to San Francisco a few times, and there is SO MUCH to see! What immediately popped into my head that I thought you might enjoy, especially if itís a nice day, is the Palace of Fine Arts. You can sit on the lawn and have a picnic and people watch (one of my favorite pastimes), or read, or shoot pictures, or all of the above! Hereís a link to a wonderful picture of it:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Palaceofarts.jpg

    And don't miss Lombard Street! And, if you hadnít said youíre going to Ghirardelli, Iíd have suggested that Ö heavenly!! I found a long list of places to see here:

    http://www.onlyinsanfrancisco.com/maps/49miledrive.asp

    Iíd like to stow away and go with you! Have fun!!!

  2. frugaltexan75 Says:

    LadyT,

    Thanks for the suggestions and the links! I've been there a few times myself, but usually with other people. Smile
    The Palace of Fine Arts sounds like a really neat place - I'd never heard of it before!

  3. debtfreeme Says:

    I lived there for college and enjoyed my years there. I am currently in Sacramento a couple hours away and often miss the city.
    Things to do off the top of my head:
    Alcatraz Island,
    Angel Island,
    China town,
    The cable cars,
    Golden Gate park with the Palace of fine arts and the museum (there is a museum card which can save you money),
    Lombard Street,
    Walk golden gate bridge (about a mile across) and have lunch in Sausalito a great little city on the other side of the bridge,
    Fishermanís wharf and the seals,
    Union square for window whopping
    Climbing up to Coit tower,
    Walking the row of painted ladies that makes the city so famous,
    Go to fort point a civil war era fort at the foot of the GG Bridge on the SF side
    Go hiking in the marin headlines just across the GG bridge, SF moma in the financial district and Yerba Buena gardens, take bart to the east bay and see UC Berkeley.
    AAA has a good guide book for the city that is free if you are a member or 5 dollars if you are not.

    Be safe! I just hope you have fun in the city I call my next door neighbor.

  4. frugaltexan75 Says:

    DFM,

    Thanks for all the ideas! I'll be sure to say hi to your neighbor. Smile

  5. Amber Says:

    Sounds like fun, enjoy your trip Smile

  6. frugaltexan75 Says:

    Thanks Amber!

  7. monkeymama Says:

    Yes, you'll be in my neck of the woods. Big Grin I laugh at the idea of anything affordable in SF.

    Another place not mentioned is Cliff House. I had a friend in college who lived over there (more like the southern tip of SF by the zoo) and by the cliff house there is this neat little antique arcade. It is really fun to walk through. & then by the beach is the old bath houses (in ruins anyway) but it's just kind of interesting - a hidden little gem.

    Likewise, we always love the Pier/Wharf. I guess it doesn't cost much to take the bus to these places and walk around. Though during the week I am not sure how safe the Cliff House area is alone. I am sure the arcade and area is okay - but hiking over to the beach/bath houses - I would be wary to do that alone. On the weekend it is crowded though and fine.

  8. frugaltexan75 Says:

    Thanks MM,

    I had noticed the Cliff House on the 49 mile scenic route, but wasn't sure if it was a worthwhile one. From how you describe it, I think it sounds like a good one! Smile
    I'll probably go to the pier, etc. with my brother on Monday. I like watching the seals. Smile

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