Hop On Hop Off Downtown x Golden Gate Bridge x Sausalito Tour
One of the quick and efficient way to see the city (and to get a little insight on the city) is by taking a tour. We were graciously invited by City Sightseeing Hop On-Hop Off to check out their 48 hour tour.
My friends were quite amazed how much we got to see in the week that we spent in San Francisco – but I think it was a combination of renting a car to those hard to get to places, having a friend tour you around the city and hopping onto this bus tour that really made our stay unforgettable. Yes, we were exhausted every day but we had seen and experienced so much – it was totally worth it!
With the Hop On Hop Off tour, they have several loops that you can take – Brian and I thought it was best we joined the Downtown and Golden Gate Bridge tour. We started off at their main office located at Fisherman’s Wharf. If you stay on this tour the entire time, it takes about 90 minutes to get around the 14 stops they have on the map. For the Downtown Tour, we took the entire tour to rest our feet from days of walking. It was nice to get some insight into the different things and street art happening around the city. What I found interesting was the fact that there are ships right underneath the roads in certain parts of San Francisco, as most of it used to be water! Also, there’s a certain point near Embarcadero that aligns with the Juan de Fuca plate. Our tour guide was pretty entertaining and informative.
We decided to do the Golden Gate & Sausalito Tour as well, since we wanted the iconic drive on the bridge as well as a different perspective of San Francisco. Also a 90 minute tour, our tour guide was so hilarious! I’m not going to repeat what he had said to us, as I don’t want him to get in trouble, but we really enjoyed his colour commentary. Our tour guide stopped right before the Golden Gate bridge to get a great angle, then onto the bridge itself. Wow, what an almighty bridge. Our Lions Gate bridge here in Vancouver pales in comparison to how huge this bridge is up close!
Once we got over the bridge, it was really windy (be sure to bring sunglasses and tie your hair back if you have long hair). We stopped at a great vantage point to take more photos by the bridge.
From here, we hopped back onto the bus and continued through Sausalito – the Beverly Hills of San Francisco. I can definitely see the charm of Sausalito with it’s beautiful view of the city, marina and ‘small town’ charm. Apparently, a lot of stars live here.
Finally, we got off at Ghirardelli Square….because…..chocolate. There is more to see around Ghirardelli Square than just chocolate but I’m going to be honest and say I beelined it to the shop/cafe. Ghirardelli Chocolate is another great San Francisco institution that’s been around since 1852 which makes them America’s oldest continuously operating chocolate maker. You’ve probably heard of them if you’ve travelled into the US.
At Ghirardelli Square you can sit down and indulge in many, many chocolately treats. They have shakes, floats, cocoa. drinking chocolate, ice cream and SUNDAES galore. It was such a tough choice to pick just one, but I went with the Sea Salt Caramel Sundae ($9.95) – vanilla ice cream smothered in ceramy caramel, freshly homemade hot fudge and seasalt. Topped with whipped cream, creamy caramel, sea salt and a Ghirardelli Milk Chocolate Square. Holy moly that was indulgent…it’s a great place to take kids and chocoholics like myself.
For more info on the City Sightseeing Hop on Hop off Tour, check out their website here.