This month, one of our team members will be venturing abroad to spend some time on the west coast of the USA, in San Francisco, California. Here we share some travel tips and what you can expect from this diverse and bustling global city.
All in the name…
San Francisco can be reached via flight from South Africa – a rather lengthy journey which would account to at least 26 hours of flying time from Cape Town. Situated in northern California, the city comes alive on the tip of a peninsula surrounded by the Pacific Ocean and San Francisco Bay. It’s known for its year-round fog, landmark Golden Gate Bridge, cable cars and colourful Victorian houses.
Ever wondered how San Francisco got its name? Well, this vibrant port city was actually named after Saint Francis of Assisi – a renowned missionary – and the reason for its Spanish name.
The Architecture and landmark buildings…
Most visitors can easily spot a few icons of San Francisco’s urban landscape—Alamo Square’s Painted Ladies and the international orange Golden Gate Bridge are two of the most famous. But San Francisco has so much more to offer, boasting a colourful past and present with interesting architecture and landmark structures that bring life to the city…
Let’s take a closer look…
The Conservatory of Flowers
Completed in 1879, the Conservatory of Flowers is the oldest glass and wood Victorian structure of its kind in Northern America. This theatre of nature was designed to bring the urbanite closer to masterpieces of the natural world otherwise unavailable in the city. It boasts roughly 16,800 windows to keep it humid and hot year round.
The Salesforce Tower:
Nothing has altered the city’s skyline as much as the Salesforce Tower, the new jewel of San Francisco’s changing SoMa neighborhood. Commissioned in 2007 and completed in 2017, the Salesforce Tower is the tallest office building west of the Mississippi, soaring to an impressive 1,070 feet.
De Young Museum
The de Young Museum can be found in Golden Gate Park. Its modernist copper-clad exterior is expected to oxidize over time and will eventually take on a greenish tone and texture to blend in with the environment. The museum exhibits American art from the 17th century to the present, international modern art, textiles, and tribal art.
The Castro Theatre
The iconic cinema house was listed as a San Francisco landmark in 1976. The Castro Theatre’s design is Spanish Colonial, a throwback to early California and meant to evoke a Mexican cathedral. But it’s what’s inside that really counts: The stunning ceiling, cast in plaster, is made to look like a leather tent complete with swags, ropes, and tassels.
It is the oldest structure in San Francisco. Mission Dolores (Mission San Francisco de Asís), was founded in 1776 by Lieutenant José Joaquin Moraga and Father Francisco Palóu for the purpose of bringing Spanish settlers to the area and ministering to the Native Americas who were already there.
With so much to see and do in this metropolitan city, it is sure to delight travellers and locals alike.
Have you been to San Francisco? Share some of the highlights of your trip with us!