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San Francisco - a wonderful liberal city

Updated on June 1, 2015

Hostels make for good stories :)

My first trip to San Francisco saw me and my friends taking the Greyhound coach, which travels to many destinations in the USA, to the YMCA. We did lots of walking that trip, and we visited most of the main tourist sights such as Pier 39 at Fishman’s Wharf, with its rotund seals, basking in the warmth of a summer day. My friend is a big fan of the 1960s, so she was very excited about spending time in a city known for its activism in those days and also its music scene. She really enjoyed browsing for old vinyl in Amoeba Records to see what musical treasures she could find.We also visited Golden Gate Bridge, Golden Gate Park, Lombard Street (a very windy street) and Union Square – all very popular sights in San Francisco.

For art lovers there is SFMOMA or the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, or Yerba Buena Centre for the Arts if you fancy something off-the beaten-track. And let’s not forget Sausalito, which is a short ferry ride away. There are many many art shops along the promenade, mostly consisting of contemporary pieces produced by the owners themselves. As an artist myself, I really appreciated the variety of shops and also the artistic vibe of this picturesque island.If your feet get tired of all the walking, and obviously you’ve seen the way the streets go up and down, you can always catch one of the famous trams to various areas of the city, and it is also worth doing just so you can say that you’ve done it!

North Beach is the Italian district and it is also where the beat generation did a lot of their writing, so as a historical point of interest, North Beach is definitely up there with the sights worth taking in in San Francisco. Vesuvio Bar and City Lights Bookstore are still open and are where writers like Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg and Lawrence Ferlinghetti spent a lot of their time, sticking their fingers up to ‘the Man’ and trying to change social consciousness and discourse.When we arrived back at the YMCA, there was a man shouting and being a bit lary, so we thought we’d better avoid him. Unfortunately our other friend (a male) was given the same room as him, but he was none the wiser as he was outside when his roomie was shouting. In the morning when we met up with our male friend again, he didn’t say anything about the noisy guy, so we figured he had calmed down after his outburst. Me and my female friend found it quite amusing, although we hadn’t gotten much sleep because a woman in our dormitory was snoring like a horse! Oh well, these are all experiences of life that do make good stories to tell the grandchildren!

There is a huge LGBT scene in San Francisco and the city is one of the more progressive and liberal cities in the USA. It’s worth noting because it adds to a relaxed, tolerant and welcoming ambience.We travelled back to our flat, again by Greyhound, and had a good night’s sleep after such a busy weekend.

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