If You Are Going to San Francisco

This was my 10th time to San Francisco I guess, so don’t expect me to talk about all the major tourist attractions there. Instead, I am going to shred some light onto something different – car cruising around the city.

 

The City.

However, for those who never been to SF, I’ll give a brief overview of a city. It is a relatively small city 7×7 miles with approximately 700,000 inhabitants, which makes it really comfortable (but expensive!) for living. All freshly baked millionaires, tech stars, investors reside here in the heart of Silicon Valley. The city offers picturesque views on the Bay area, a great variety of Victorian houses, super steep hills and the croakiest street in the world (Lombard Str) from which you can see the whole city and the Pacific ocean. Unfortunately, the ocean is too cold to swim, so all you can do is.. fishing. Or, you can rent a legendary boat that won American Cup numerous times. Marina is one of the best areas in the city to live. At the same time, if I were you, I would definitely avoid going to Tenderloin district on my own – NOT SAFE AT ALL!

Tip: SF is not the place to sleep – you work hard and party hard!

DCIM100GOPRO

Culture.

San Francisco definitely has its own vibe that is somewhat similar to what we have in Odessa – it’s pretty much chilled, with open-minded and welcoming people. I must also tell you that it seems that every single one of them (a banker, or a waiter) is doing a start-up of his own to change the world. The smell of weed here and there reminds you about the hippy times, since SF was the loved spot by those folks. Still, it amazes me how many homeless, drunk and drugged people are there on the streets. But don’t be afraid, they won’t harm you (usually). You see, the reason behind this issue (yes, it’s an issue for me) is that SF is very tolerant to everyone.

“Paying forward” is a big thing is Silicon Valley. This means that people will (mostly) help you with introductions, advice, feedback or anything you might need, especially if you are a promising entrepreneur. The logic is simple – it does not take too much of an effort to for them help you, but if you are to succeed later in life – they will benefit as well since they “helped” you when you were not that successful.

Food.

Thai, Chinese, Japanese, Indian, Polish, Russian, Brazilian, American, Italian, French, Modern, Fusion… I’ve never seen that many great restaurants in one city! The food is just out of this world! I am pretty sure that anyone can find something he or she will like. If you are not happy what SF offers, you can rent a car and go to Napa or Sonoma Valleys and experience 14 course 3 Michelin Stars restaurant along with great selection of local wine. Tip: I definitely recommend eating out at Alexander’s Steakhouse, Samovar Tea Lounge, Benihana, Rotunda, Bourbon Steak, Scoma’s.

Things To Do.

While in the City hop on the tour bus – it will give you a glance of the city. Do visit the Golden Gate (duh!), Museum of Fine Arts, business part at Market street, Pier 39 for sea lions. (This list will be updated).

Night Life.

The party scene in San Francisco is far away from amazing. There are a few reason for that. First of all, it’s a men dominated city, so the proportion at any given club would probably be 70 to 30%. Second, I have a feeling that SF people work too hard day and night on their precious startups that they don’t party as much. Tip: if you are going out – be sure to check Novella for pre-drinks and go to Infusion Lounge (on Tuesdays and Thursdays) and Harlot on Friday. For electric / underground, yet posh night out, book a table at VesselDCIM100GOPRO

Rent a Car!

Even if you are new to the city, I still recommend renting a car and going to Napa Valley, which offer an amazing wine tasting experience at some of the best wineries in California. For a $10-$30 you can try up to 10 various wines that grow locally. Like surfing? Then go to Santa Cruiz (a very hispanic small town) with amazing beaches for surfing. The ride itself along the coastal like of the Pacific ocean is worthwhile doing. You’ll get miraculous views, especially during the sunset (see the video). I am sure I missed a few things – feel free to contribute in comments below.