Fisherman's Wharf remains one of San Francisco's most popular tourist destinations. The Wharf consists of a long, coast side ... More
Fisherman's Wharf remains one of San Francisco's most popular tourist destinations. The Wharf consists of a long, coast side row of seafood restaurants, street vendors, souvenir stores, and beautiful ocean scenery. Fisherman's Wharf was originally a major fishing pier, and although the fishing industry is still alive today, the main focus of this specific coastal area is its historic tourist attractions. Parking is limited on the Wharf itself so parking downtown or taking a cable car to the Wharf is recommended. Ferry rides are offered for those who would like to visit Marin County. There are numerous attractions and great places to eat (see the other entries for Tourist Attractions and Fisherman Wharf restaurants). Wear comfortable shoes and dress in layers, even during summer months, the breeze off the ocean can be quite chilling. And take your camera. The photo opportunities are fabulous. And don't forget to visit the barking sea lions at Pier 39. The kids will love them, guaranteed!
If you go for the street performers, you'll be pleasantly surprised. They actually have some great talent. Everything esle is simply a tourist trap...and i say that only so you can experience real parts of the city. Go for Alcatraz, though. That's a must-see. Everything else, though, is an urban jungle. Boo.
I live by Fisherman's Wharf, and despite its touristy image, this is one place I wouldn't mind coming back to again and again. Think Pier 39, sea lions, scenic view of the San Francisco Bay, dungeoness crabs, unique souvenir shops, ferries cruising the bay, entertaining street performers, and the mysterious fog rolling in from the Pacific Ocean, and you too will fall in love with this area.
When you go to San Francisco you just MUST go to the Wharf. It has the atmosphere you are looking for, and have seen in countless movies and TV shows: It smells like the sea, you can get some of the worlds best clam chowder and sourdough bread, great shops, sidewalk entertainers, and you get to see real seal lions just inches away lounging around on the docks barking, playing, jumping into the marina to swim, or doing their favorite activity....sleeping. Fishermans Wharf is not just Pier 39�it is an entire boardwalk. Right on Pier 39 some of the shops are over-priced, but walk along the wharf and you can get a cheap ski jacket (for when you go during the summer and forget to realize SF is always chilly at night) for $20! On Pier 39 are some nicer shops and restaurants, and you must go to the end of the pier and get some of the real salt water taffy. They have tons of different flavors and you can get it by the pound! There are people from all over the world walking around you, there is always something to do or see, and some of the freshest and best seafood you have ever had. You can even go watch how they make the very famous San Francisco sourdough bread, and the bread makers will talk to you through their microphone. It is fun and safe for families, and great for couples too. Or if you are by yourself you will not be for long! Great shopping and bargains to be had along the wharf too�but not necessarily at Pier 39. Haggling for a deal is encouraged at many of the shops along the boardwalk. You just got to try some of the locally picked Dungeness crab too...it is awesome! While you are at the wharf, grab some clam chowder, grab a bench, and sit and have some of the best people watching while enjoying some rich hot chowder. How can you not love Fishermans Wharf?
Fisherman's Wharf is bustling with shops, street vendors, and of course, restaurants ! My family and I searched for a reasonable place to sit down and eat but everything was very much over-priced. I went down to the local tourism booth and asked for the best spot to eat seafood for the best prices and i was told Taylor St was the place I was looking for. They were right ! The curb-side food was at a bargain price, but there was no place to sit ! (we improvised on that though) Great food at a great price ! :)
It was definitely a touristy place, but hey that's what vacations are for. We loved the fun atmosphere, shopping & watching the sea lions, even though they smell bad. Great place to jump on a cable car to the top of the hills and walk down.
It is fun to go here and eat with my daughter. She really enjoys the atmosphere. You can't live here and not come here for the clam chowder in a sourdough bowl. Sometimes the weekends can be pretty crowded along with lots of traffic, so I prefer to come during the week.
Several insider redeeming features about the wharf:
You can hang out with the sea lions for hours at no cost and watch the tourists go by.
The Buena vista hotel and bar is a great place to tip a couple of pints. Continue down the street and you got Ghiradelli Square with the decadent ice cream creations. Parking in the area can be a bear but if you have good karma- don't give up! It's worth it.
I thought the pier was beautiful and exciting. There are so many things to do and see. I will go there many more times and it will be even more exiting than the first because I know how many more things there are to do.
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