San Francisco is one of the most amazing cities in the world, in our opinion, among the most beautiful. Cosmopolitan and tolerant, it has a very important cultural vocation; moreover, its architecture, very fascinating, makes it the most "European" of American cities.
This city, made up of climbs and descents as few in the world, between hills and some hairpin bends, is truly unique by conformation. You can take beautiful photos and maybe get excited a bit ', with the view of the bay all for you. It is no coincidence that so many successful American films have been filmed here.
San Francisco, also known with the nickname of "City by the bay", has so much to offer.
How to orientate yourself
San Francisco, like all major American cities, is divided into districts. The Golden Gate area and that of Fisherman's Whar (highly touristic); Nob Hill and Russian Hill; Chinatown; Financial District (union square); Tenderloin; SoMa (South Market); Twin Peaks (high hills and panoramic views of SF); Castro.
As you have read, the districts are different; this city is quite extensive and each district has its own physiognomy, with a strong and proud character.
Like all big American cities, security is guaranteed by the efficient police force, but we must bear in mind that crimes, thefts or robberies, all over California, happen.
In San Francisco, our advice is to avoid the areas to the southeast and some neighborhoods of the Mission District. Tenderloin it's full of bums; at most, they will ask you for a few dollars, but, generally, they do not constitute a danger.
In America the problem of homeless people is quite common; in cities like San Francisco and Los Angeles you will see many. Just respect the basic rules of common sense and you will spend the holidays without particular dangers.
How to get to San Francisco
San Francisco can be reached from Europe with direct flights, or with a stopover, in the most important cities of the United States.
In addition, the city is equipped with 3 airports. The San Francisco airport International is the most important one, located near the city. Oakland International Airport, is located in Oakland, on the other side of the city. Finally, the San José airport, of less importance, but strategic for the routes to Canada and Mexico.
San Francisco International airport (SFO) is the largest city airport, recently renovated. In the 2015 SkyTrax awarded SFO for the excellence of its airport staff; moreover, SFO is one of the busiest airports in the world, as it frequently connects Europe, Asia and Australia.
With 3 airports, it's not difficult to find a flight that will take you to San Francisco. Whether direct, or with a stopover, we recommend starting right from this city for the start of the California tour.
Kanoa Recommend that you use the BART to get to the city center from the airport.
How to reach the Center
The city airport is distant 22 km south of the center; the easiest way to reach the city is through the Metro BART (Bay area rapid transit) network. This is a convenient, fast and efficient service to move around San Francisco and the east of Oakland.
If you arrive at Oakland Airport, you will need a bus service, the AirBART, which connects the east side to downtown San Francisco.
A one-way ticket to San Francisco costs 8,10 dollars (5,6 euro, 5 pounds). Alternatively, you can buy a ticket from 16,20 dollars (11,2 euro, 10 sterling).
Children under the age of 4 can travel free on BART trains.
For more information, Kanoa recommends the official website: www.bart.gov
If you are planning a California Tour, you can rent your car directly at the San Francisco Airport.
To reach Downtown, you have to take the Highway 101 road and, traffic permitting, you will be in the city within 30 minutes.
Alternatively, you can opt for the taxi service; although it is expensive.
Kanoa advises to reach San Francisco with BART. Visit the city using public transportation; this will save you time and stress by car, as the access roads to the city bordering the bay are always very busy.
If you were leaving for the Costa Tour, you can always take the car back at a later time.