Not every vacation needs to involve the baggage of travel-related stress, and your home often makes the best hotel. Especially in San Francisco, there's always more to the city that you've never taken the time to experience. Here are some of the attractions you should consider for a staycation in San Francisco:
- Take a Staircase Tour: Sightseeing is normally associated with tourists, but have you actually spent time viewing the city's sights? San Francisco's staircases offer beautiful views and the opportunity to get some healthy exercise; the Lyon Street Steps are popular with joggers and sightseers alike, while the Dipsea steps offer a scenic route that extends to Stinson Beach. Many other stairways boast exquisite views, intricate artwork, or both, (like the 16th Avenue Mosaic Steps) and it’s worth exploring the city from a different perspective.
- Try Some Water Activities: Beaches are great, but there’s a lot more you can do on the water during your staycation. For shark aficionados, the Farallon Islands are one of the top feeding spots for Great White Sharks, and are just visible from the mainland on clear days. If you’re feeling brave, you can even try your luck cage diving. If you’re looking for a more mellow experience, you can always rent a kayak at South Beach and tour the coast – just mind the currents. For something a little more intense, consider taking the opportunity to learn how to windsurf if you never have. San Francisco is almost synonymous with waterfront activities, and there is no shortage of opportunity to get out on the water during your staycation.
- Visit Hidden Gems: While tourists and visitors from out of town might prefer to stick to the city’s museums and restaurants before stopping for a selfie by the Golden Gate Bridge, the city’s unsung beauties belong to San Francisco locals. There are dozens of these treasures scattered around the city, like the intricate Lands End Labyrinth, made entirely from large stones set in the sand and located off the Coastal Trail. You may have also heard of the Wave Organ, but it’s definitely worth a visit to hear it in person.For the best experience, it’s recommended to wait until high tide. As long as you’re staying in the area, use your knowledge of the city to your advantage and spend some time with San Francisco’s lesser-known attractions.
- Go For a Hike: The city is well known for its hills, and many of them make for excellent hiking. Mount Davidson is nearly a half-mile high, and is the tallest of San Francisco’s 40-something hills. The hike’s paths offer the ability to catch some sun or stay in the shade at your discretion, and you can enter the park at Juanita Way or Dalewood. The Presidio Promenade stretches from Lombard Gate to the Golden Gate Bridge, and has excellent views of Crissy Field, the Bay and Marin. Strawberry Hill, located on an island in Stow Lake, (itself located in Golden Gate Park), makes for a good hike with a great view. Circling the island makes for just over a two mile trip, and offers a different experience than more linear trails. The city is home to dozens of hiking trails, both officially and otherwise, and presents tons of opportunity to complement your daily fitness routine with postcard-worthy visuals.
With so much to do in San Francisco, it’s easy to make the case for a staycation. Why leave town when you have so many opportunities for adventure right in your backyard?