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San Francisco, California

Cable cars, the Golden Gate Bridge, the Transamerica Pyramid—San Francisco is a travelogue of iconic images. Even if you've never been to California, you've seen these seven hills in classic films and TV shows. For a first-time visitor, every sight is new but familiar. Who wouldn't recognize the lantern-strung alleys of Chinatown, the stately Victorian mansions of Pacific Heights or the serpentine twists of Lombard Street? Who hasn't sung the Tony Bennett song? Our photographic memories of San Francisco go back to the Great Earthquake of 1906, and more recently, Loma Prieta. Our cultural mileposts include the leather bars of Castro Street, the Latin taquerias of the Mission District and the incense shops of Haight-Ashbury (though the flower children sport more piercings and tattoos these days).

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Things to Do

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OCT 17
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OCT 18
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Destination Articles

San Francisco, California

Essentials

Start your San Francisco vacation by spending the day in Golden Gate Park (between Fulton Street, Lincoln Way, Stanyan Street and the Great Highway). Observe multicolored tropical fish and other marine creatures at The California Academy of Sciences (55 Music Concourse Dr.), contemplate great art at the de Young Museum (50 Hagiwara Tea Garden Dr.) or stroll through plantings from around the world at the San Francisco Botanical Garden at Strybing Arboretum (9th Avenue and Lincoln Way).
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Top Picks for Kids

Cutting-edge technology takes center stage at the Children's Creativity Museum (221 Fourth St.), whether it's crafting clay characters and learning the basics of stop-motion animation or testing new apps and high-tech games in the Innovation Lab. This is an absolute must for your list of “things to do today.”
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Shopping

Whether it's malls, farmers markets, retail complexes, souvenir shops, stylish boutiques, secondhand stores or designer showrooms, a San Francisco vacation offers cosmopolitan, funky, kitschy and trendy choices guaranteed to keep committed shopaholics blissfully happy.
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AAA Travel Tips

San Francisco, California

Off the Beaten Path San Francisco

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Inspector Picks: Pet-Friendly Restaurants

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The Best Taquerias in San Francisco

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Book Lovers: Add These Literary Landmarks to Your Bucket List

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6 Romantic Things to Do in San Francisco

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