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Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Lombard Street, Traveling in San Francisco, California

twisty Lombard Street
Lombard Street, famous (incorrectly so) for being the crookedest street in the world. In fact, it's not the steepest or crookedest even just in San Francisco. No matter, it is known and photographed as such. The steepest street in San Francisco is Filbert with a slope of 31 1/2 % grade, while Famous Lombard Street is only a 27% grade. Vermont Street in San Francisco claims to be more crooked, while Snake Alley in Burlington, Iowa has yet sharper turns.

Lombard Street, San Francisco has 8 hairpin turns that attract tons of visitors every year. It's fun to ride the Hyde Street Cable Car to the top and walk down. From the top you get quite a view of San Francisco. Looking down the hill towards the bay you can see Fishermans Wharf, Alcatraz, and Ghirardelli Square.
Bay view

Beautifully restored Victorian homes line the street, with well manicured flower beds give one colorful backgrounds for photo's.
Victorian homes
I was taken aback by the number of rude tourist who seemed to forget these were private homes. Stepping into their yards to get better photo's ...totally disregarding the signs that politely ask tourists to please stay on the walk. I would not want to be a resident there. People would stand right on top of flowers for the sake of a better photo. I'm always sadden by people's lack of respect for others property. Once when the same person had tromped more than one flower, I spoke outloud to my husband and said ...why are people so rude they ignore the signs and think it's ok to trespass, tromp flowers...wonder how they'd react to someone doing that in their front yard? I hoped people heard me.

Riding the various trolleys and cable cars is great fun, and a nice way to see what you later want to explore further. Plan to wait, be patient, be kind and wait your turn...
This should be a clue to people with small children not to add this activity to your travel plans. Waiting is not in shaded comfortable areas, there is not entertainment, nor refreshments. Do yourself a favor rent a stroller and do the walking tour, or hail a cab.
cable car

There's plenty to see while walking, and you can still see the trolley's and cable cars, see how steep and narrow the streets are.
narrow streets
Lots of fun places to dart in for a cool drink or have lunch, but again...be prepared to wait.

You've all seen this famous street in movies and TV shows. It was filmed in the move, "What's Up Doc" with Barbara Streisand and Ryan O'Neal and the famous movie "Vertigo".

The switchbacks were instituted in 1922-23 as a means to slow down traffic, and make travel there safer. Lombard Street begins in The Presidio, runs through the Russian Hill and Telegraph Hill Neighborhoods.

MUSTS when traveling in San Fransisco:
Wear comfortable walking shoes
Layer clothing
Be prepared to wait, everywhere you go

NEAR BY Attractions when traveling in San Francisco:
Alcatraz
Muir Woods
The Presidio

17 comments:

  1. Great shots and yes, waiting is a part of SF culture. I've seen firsthand how tourists can be trying to get photos. It's pretty funny sometimes. Thanks for your comment on my blog.

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  2. Hey Sandy..thanks for your comment.. u r welcome anytime :)

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  3. What a great post! I think San Francisco is one of the most beautiful cities in America, and it's one of my favorite places to visit. Your post brought back a lot of memories.

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  4. Your post/pix brought back good memories for me, I love SF especially the very pretty houses. And that clam chowder down by Fisherman's Wharf is to die for, seriously, hope you got to taste some :)

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  5. Hi Sandy - Great pictures! It's funny I have some of the same ones (just different people) I went to San Fransisco with my 2 sisters a few years back. We have lots of relatives in that area. It was fun driving down Lombard street in a Huge Old Cadillac. We also got to eat in the Restaurant at the top of the Bank of America Building (my Uncle sold them there meat) it was really cool. I can't wait to go back!

    Sheila

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  6. San Fran is truly my favorite city (After Pittsburgh, of course). The memories I have... looking at that picture of the cable car. Wow. Brings stuff back.

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  7. Hey Sandy,
    Thanks again for the wonderful pictures and narrative. Makes me almost feel as if we were there with you. I know you are having a wonderful time and I know you are looking forward to visiting your daughter. We will be visiting ours in Knoxville this long holiday weekend and we can't wait for Friday afternoon to get here. Have a safe trip! Thanks again for visiting my blog and leaving your comment.

    Friends 4 Life!

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  8. Great post. I left my heart in San Francisco...la la la la la la la laaaaaaa!

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  9. Very nice photo captures. I can imagine how fit people are that live there and do not own a car. Awesome hills for walking :)

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  10. When I came home last January and my honey came with me, I of course had to take him to see this street. I did all sorts of touristy things that I hadn't done when I worked there! Funny how that is.

    Good for you saying something about those rude people. I only hope they understood english!!!!

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  11. SF looks like a beautiful place to visit. Hopefully I will get to go there someday, and until then your wonderful photos gave me a nice glimpse!

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  12. Love San Francisco! The painted ladies are the most beutiful set of homes I have ever seen. SF has such a diverse population, it's like going on vacation to a different place everyday.

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  13. Great post and photos. I'm fond of San Francisco since I grew up near there. The weather can be fickle so don't ever think because it's Summer that it will be warm.

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  14. SF transportation system is great. I lived there for a few years, and it's no problem getting around without a vehicle. Hope you had a nice visit!

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  15. This is a terrific post. We'd gone to SF for the first time in 2006, and I'm itching to go back. Five days was not long enough! We photographed Lombard from a distance, but did not get the opportunity to walk it; I'd love to do that someday. Great shots!

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  16. San Francisco is one of the most memorable place that I had been to. It is also the first place me and my girlfriend (now wife.. :-)) travel on our own. When driving in SF, I remember we actually drove Lombard Street twice! Driving in SF is nice especially when you drive all the way up the slope right to the end, and at the tip, your car start to slope down. Just like sitting roller coaster.

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