Back from Vacation – San Francisco/Northern California

Last week I went to San Francisco and had a wonderful vacation! I’d never been there before and went with my latest beau. The primary reason for the trip was because he wanted to visit and spend some time with his life long best friend, who lives in Petaluma. I’ve never been there before and thought that a visit to a new city would be a great idea for a vacation.


We slept in due to arriving very very early Saturday morning, then stepped out to walk down to the waterfront. On the way down, I got my first view of the Golden Gate Bridge, which now rivals my very favorite bridge of all time (St. John’s Bridge near Portland, OR).



We spent most of the afternoon walking around along the waterfront and enjoying the blue skies and beautiful weather.


We met Anton’s BFF Greg and his girlfriend Roberta for coffee, then headed back to our hotel and had dinner.


We headed out to the city again early and visited the Cable Car Museum. Maybe I’m a geek, but thought this was fascinating. I didn’t actually realize that they are called Cable Cars because they grip on to cables that are running under the street…. seems obvious, I know… lol. Anyway, there are four cable lines that run around the city that are powered by four engines that drive giant pulleys and angled, directional shieves. The descriptions of how the cars brake, splicing of frayed cables, and how the cars make corners were all really well explained. Really very cool and highly recommended!


We walked through China Town, then caught a bus to Coit Tower. We rode the evelvator to the top and saw great 360 views of the city and the bay. The windows had plexiglass over them, but there was enough room that people had slipped coins through the windows to sit on the ledge…



Friends picked us up at Coit Tower and we went over the Golden Gate Bridge (love love love) and over to the Marin Headlands for a hike. It was another beautiful day and there were wonderful views of the city, the bridge, and the Pacific.



Sunday night we drove to a new hotel in Petaluma and had a really nice dinner at Roberta’s house.


Monday was cold and rainy. Greg invited us to his place for breakfast and we hung out with him most of the day chatting. We went to a movie later, and walked around Petaluma during a late afternoon break from the rain. Petaluma has a really nice downtown and seems like a nice place to live. We headed back to the hotel, then met Greg later in the evening for dinner.


The wine country!!! Wow.. beautiful… and … tasty. Greg has worked at one of the wineries in the area so all of our wine tasting with him was complimentary. We visited the Valley of the Moon, Benziger, and Imagery Wineries. The service at Benziger was really great so I bought a bottle there. I also liked Imagery. They hold contests every year for the art that goes on the bottles. It was a nice place and they had original paintings of the label art hung all around which was fun to look at. I’d like to go back sometime when they are processing the wine, but maybe I’ll check that out at Michigan wineries in the fall. Here we are at Imagery… I feel (and look) quite done with wine tasting… lol…



We got up and drove to the Avenue of the Giants a couple hours north of Petaluma. Seeing some redwoods was one of my primary objectives for the trip and it was incredible! I love trees. I tend to stitch patterns of that have trees in them too… I’ve noticed. Anyway, we went for a couple of short hikes when we arrived, saw some huge trees, then checked into our teeny tiny cute cabin (which I forgot to take a picture of!)





We did another hike along the Avenue of the Giants that lead to this nice little sandy beach along the Eel River. There were some deer tracks in the sand that lead from the trail to the water… The great thing about our visit to the Avenue was that it is so early in the season that we were mostly the only people on the hiking trails! The hikes really reminded me of a lot of the hikes I’ve done in Washington and Oregon.


We headed back to Petaluma later in the afternoon and decided to drive down a portion of Route 1, which hugs the coast.



We headed back to a hotel in San Francisco Friday morning and stopped at Muir Woods. John Muir was one of the primary advocates for national parks, forests, monuments, and conservation. He was featured in a recent documentary on PBS called The National Parks – America’s Best Idea. We did a three mile loop hike which was really nice.




We also had plans on Friday night to take a tour of Alcatraz, but it was cold and kind of rainy, so we cancelled and hung out in the hotel. When we had to check out Saturday morning, we went to his friends house and hung around most of the afternoon until we had to leave for our flight home.

During the downtime, I managed to get in some stitching and finished up side one of Sweetheart Tree’s Stitcher’s Favorite Biscornu. I love the colors and the teeny tiny buttons on this…


It was another great vacation to a beautiful place!


6 thoughts on “Back from Vacation – San Francisco/Northern California

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