With its storied history and iconic landmarks, San Francisco is a city that draws tourists from all over the world. This means the city is, to put it mildly, not an inexpensive place to visit. With this in mind, don’t ignore locations like South San Francisco for those traveling to the Bay Area on a budget.
Golden Gate Park
If you really want to get the “locals” experience, plan to spend time exploring the 1,017 acres of Golden Gate Park. The beauty of this visit is that you can have an amazing time with or without spending any money.
The park has no shortage of museums, hiking trails, picnic areas, and gardens. It includes the Japanese Tea Garden, the oldest Japanese garden in the United States. You can also visit the Conservatory of Flowers, the oldest public conservatory in the country. Both charge nominal fees for admission.
Those interested in hiking should check out the trails of Strawberry Hill. For the artistic types, the De Young museum offers exhibitions of 20th century and contemporary art. Take a calm walk through the park, head west, and you will discover a breathtaking view of the Pacific Ocean.
Muir Woods Monument
Few things are as impressive as the old-growth redwood trees that make up Muir Woods National Monument. Just north of San Francisco, Muir Woods provides an experience that can only be found in three areas in the entire world. Part of the Golden Gate Recreational Area, the redwoods found here stand around 250 feet tall and are between 500 to 800 years old.
While admission for adults is $10, children ages 15 and under are free. Keep in mind when planning your trip that, in an attempt to preserve the park, reservations are now required. There are no campsites or picnic areas, and no cell phone service or WiFi availability, which means you must plan accordingly for this adventure.
Image via Flickr by dalecruise
A world-famous attraction, the peaks stand around 922 feet high, providing a stunning view of the city. While taking in the view of the Bay Area, there is more to this area than just the view. There is no admission to this spot or fee for parking, so visitors can save money by driving themselves to the parking lot at the northernmost peak and walking from there.The 64 acre park is something visitors should not ignore. Hikers should plan to dedicate some time to explore if they want to get the best possible experience. Walking through the trails of grasslands and coastal shrubs, keep your eyes open for the Mission Blue Butterfly, an endangered species.
The depth of what the city has to offer runs deep and if you’re looking for some inexpensive adventures, these are some ideas to make your visit memorable without breaking the bank. With the number of possibilities available, visitors don’t have to spend a fortune once they have arrived. Plan accordingly and you can have a fantastic visit to one of the greatest cities in the world.