This full-day tour introduces you to San Francisco's best-known
neighborhoods—Union Square to scenic Fisherman's Wharf, historic
North Beach, and vibrant Chinatown. Once you arrive at Fisherman's
Wharf, the rest can be done on foot, but public transportation options
are listed just in case. START: BART/Muni: Powell or Montgomery. Bus: 2,
3, 4, or 38 to Powell St.; 30 or 45 to Geary St. Cable Car: Powell lines.
1 Union Square. Start your tour
at the shopping and commercial hub
of San Francisco. The square itself
(named for a series of violent pro-
union mass demonstrations staged
here on the eve of the Civil War)
reopened in 2002 after a $25-million
restoration that replaced stretches of
lawn with a 245-foot-long (76m) floor
of granite and scattered greenery—
turning it from a resting spot for the
homeless into a welcoming plaza and
exhibition space. All that remains
from the old square is the 90-foot
(27m) Victory tower, dedicated by
Theodore Roosevelt after the Span-
ish-American War. @ 30 min.; best
before 9am. Union Sq. is between
Post, Geary, Stockton & Powell sts.
BART: Powell or Montgomery. Bus: 2,
3, 4, or 38 to Powell St.; 30 or 45 to
Geary St. Cable car: Powell lines.
2 ★★ = Ride the Powell-
Hyde Cable Car. Head to the
cable-car turnaround at Powell
and Market streets and await the
Powell-Hyde line. The first of these
engineless cars made its maiden voy-
age in 1873. The cable car will take
you over Russian Hill. Pay attention
as you crest Hyde Street at Green-
wich Street—you'll catch your first
breathtaking glimpse of the San Fran-
cisco Bay and Alcatraz Island. For
details on how these cars work, see
p 12. @ 30 min.; best before 9:30am.
Powell & Market sts. $3 per ride.
3 ★ Lombard Street. “The
crookedest street in the world” is in
fact not even the crookedest street
in San Francisco (Vermont St.
between 20th and 22nd sts. in
Potrero Hill is more crooked!). The
zigzags were added in the 1920s, as
the street's 27-degree pitch was too
steep for cars. Cars are only permit-
ted to descend, but pedestrians can
take the stairs up or down on either
side. The street is loveliest in spring,
when the hydrangeas are in bloom.
@ 30 min.; best: weekday mornings.
Lombard St. (between Hyde & Leav-
enworth sts.). Cable Car: Powell-
Riding a cable car is one of San Francisco's most entertaining activities.