Before starting our first day in SF, we went with my friend Adi and his wife Orit to have coffee in a really cool place in Palo Alto called Backyard Brew.
We then went to SF and started by going directly to Pier 39, perhaps the most touristic point of the city, where we saw sea lions.
We then went to rent bicycles in order to cycle the Golden Gate bridge, the most well-known bridge in the world. We were not prepared for the weather, actually. Apparently, even though a few kilometers away everything was sunny and pretty warm, SF has different weather – and the ride was extremely windy. We were really cold as we didn’t bring warm clothes, and many clouds blocked the view of the bridge.
We crossed the bridge and the views were a bit better 🙂
We got back to Pier 39 by ferry. It was a nice yet long trip.
We then went to our amazing Couch Surfing host. This guy actually rents out our room for money on many occasions, but on available days he hosts couch surfers and we were lucky enough to be hosted by him. He is a really wonderful and nice guy and we enjoyed talking to him and learning about his daily life. One of the best things about Couch Surfing in my opinion is that you get to see how the local people really live their lives, and a real house in a real neighborhood. On our way back from SF we stopped in a grocery store to buy some groceries, and then we cooked Shakshuka (an Israeli dish) at his place. We were really happy to see that he liked it 🙂
The next morning we went to Four Barrel Coffee, a place that a good friend had recommended to us. It was amazing.
We then went up Telegraph Hill and all the way to the top of Coit Tower to get a really nice view of the city, that made us realize how big it is and how it’s made of many hills. The ascent to the hill was quite steep and the entire day felt as if the city was being cooled by a huge air conditioner. The wind that comes from the ocean actually made it feel almost cold in this sunny day.
We climbed down the hill and walked all the way to China town. It really did feel like we were in a different atmosphere, with so many signs solely in Chinese. We bought some food from a local stand the the workers there were authentically unpleasant.
We also went to a small factory/store where they make fortune cookies.
At night we had the opportunity to meet friends of Neta who had moved from Israel to live in California a few years ago. It was really great to see them, and also to hear about their lives here.
On the next day Neta didn’t feel so well so we didn’t travel long. We mostly went to Golden Gate Park, and specifically toured the Japanese Tea Garden inside that was pretty cool. We also got to eat at a local bakery.
Lastly, we had dinner at a wonderful Chinese restaurant in Castro Valley named “Silver Spoon Gourmet Cuisine”. The food was great and our waiter was really nice. He was excited that we were from Israel and told Neta that she had a “natural beauty”. Apparently he has good eyes, too 🙂