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6th April 2004
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 Holiday | Programmes | 50

San Francisco

Best time to go: San Francisco's summer weather can be foggy, local weather is unpredictable.

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Craig Doyle
Sittin' on the dock of San Francisco bay gave the city a number 36 ranking.

Although San Francisco is considered to be a fantastically hip 21st century city, it manages to retain its old world charm and is literally oozing with history.

People have flocked to San Francisco since the Gold Rush, when they came in the hopes of riches and success.

In the glorious days of flower power, San Francisco was a centre for hippie culture, bursting with peace and happiness, and you will see remnants of this era in the colourful shops and laid back cafes of Haight-Ashbury.

The arty types hang out in the cultural heart of San Francisco, South of Market Street, otherwise known as the the SoMa, where there is an abundance of museums and galleries.

The cable cars of San Francisco provide a perfect way for tourists to get around the city and have been declared a national historic monument.

There are three different lines, and the cabling alone stretches 80,000 miles and weighing in at 24 and a half thousand tonnes, is enough to go around the world several times.

San Francisco has 48 hilly square miles, 39 cable cars and five bridges, including the Golden Gate Bridge. A trip to San Francisco would not be complete without a walk across this famous landmark which should take about 30 minutes. Another popular tourist attraction is the notorious prison Alcatraz.


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Price: About £300 return

Approx flight time: London to San Francisco is over 12 hours

  • the films 'Bullet' and 'Vertigo' were both filmed in San Francisco
  • San Francisco was named after St Francis of Assisi, the patron saint of animals
  • many films have been made at or about Alcatraz prison in San Francisco Bay including 'Birdman of Alcatraz' and 'Escape from Alcatraz'
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