San Francisco (Alcatraz)

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October 25th 2008
Published: October 30th 2008
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San Francisco!San Francisco!San Francisco!

We had to walk up another hill for this view!
After our wonderful meal the previous night, we also discovered that the "great deal" we had got on our hotel (which included breakfast) was infact not so great. Although there were 3 of us staying in the hotel, we were only allowed 1 breakfast voucher between us. Surprisingly there was no argument and Ollie volunteered to sample the delights of IHOP (Internation House Of Pancakes!).

We had made the effort to get up early and make the most of our day in San Francisco. After Ollie had finished his breakfast, Dale drove us into downtown where we found the cheapest all day car park. It was still $19 though! From there, we hiked the rather large distance to Pier 33 to book our trip to Alcatraz. It was a great deal busier than we had expected but we managed to book a tour for 2.20pm. As we had a few hours to kill, we decided to take a walk. First stop was the Cait Tower - A memorial for the firefighters of San Francisco. It just so happened that it was the towers 75th anniversary and we were able to view some very old emergency vehicles and watch some crazy firemen put up a big ladder.

From there, we traveresed some more steep hills and made our way to Lombard Street. This was the famous residential road on which cars can zig-zag there way down. We walked to the top, took some photos and then headed off to China Town. We immediately felt at home amongst all the Chinese People and quickly found a restaurant we liked the look of. We were so relieved to have a tasty meal that we could actually afford and it was thoroughly enjoyed.

After lunch we still had a few hours to kill and headed to a nearby bar which had an all-day happy hour. We enjoyed some cheap beers before making our way back to Pier 33. We boarded our ferry on time and enjoyed the 12 minute cruise across to Alcatraz Island. The ferry provided excellent views of the San Francisco skyline, as well as the Bay and Golden Gate Bridges. Once aboard the Island, we took the audio tour and watched a film before taking the ferry back to the mainland. It was a very interesting tour and the weather was fantastic - a good trip!

Once we reached Pier 33, we walked to Union Square for some shopping. With hindsight, this was a bad idea. With so many sales on, it proved to be a little more expensive than we planned! By this stage we were all very tired and it was getting late so we drove back to our hotel via Subway for our dinner.

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