Playing Tourist In San Francisco
We chose this date because, as locals, sometimes we forget it can be fun to experience our fair city as a tourist. Sure, we poke fun at the San-Francisco-sweater-wearing noobs from afar who don’t know about Karl the Fog, but it can be fun to take off our jaded caps and remember the days when we we brand new to this beautiful place. Grab your date, your best San Francisco sweatshirt and head outside for this one.
Estimated Cost: Moderate
Estimate Duration: 5-6 hours
Best Days: Thursday-Sunday
Best Time: Late afternoon, evenings
Vibe: Casual, playful & a little touristy.
Photos via Yelp.
1. Get A Blast From The Past At The Musée Méchanique at Pier 45.
This place is tucked among the bustle of Fisherman’s Wharf and offers the world’s largest collection of vintage & retro coin-operated games. Whether you’re into quirky games from the 1920s or arcade faves from the ‘80s and ‘90s, this place has something for you and your date to play.
Things to know about Musée Méchanique:
The Musée is open from 10am-8pm daily.
Admission is always free!
Bring cash—there’s a change machine inside.
2. Plan A Prison Break After Hours At Alcatraz
Ready to be utterly creeped out? Head to Alcatraz for one of their night tours. The fun starts on the boat with a narrated trip around the island, followed by a guided tour from the ferry landing up to the prison. You'll be regaled with stories of the infamous prisoners who used to live there (see: Al Capone and Machine Gun Kelly), and shown hidden spots once used for escape attempts. Inside, you can take an (awesome) self-guided audio tour through the darkened cell blocks, and take turns scaring each other.
Things to know about The 'Traz:
Night tours are offered Thursday-Monday. Tickets for two adults will run you about $104.
Get your tix 2-4 few weeks advance. These tours tend to sell out.
Check their schedule for the most up-to-date ferry times, as they change seasonally.
Bring a valid ID, walking shoes & layers.
3. Take The Cable Car To North Beach For Dinner At Tony's.
When you want to play tourist, a trip to North Beach is a must. You can catch the Powell cable car, get off around Union & Hyde Street and walk over and down the hill to Washington Square. Nearby, Tony’s Pizza Napoletana is an amazingly popular joint that you have to try if you’ve never been. Expect a wait, however, as this place is jumpin’ and they don’t take reservations.
Things to know about Tony's:
Tony has won numerous awards for his 'za, including Best Pizza Margherita at the World Pizza Cup in Naples. Didn't know there was a World Pizza Cup? Us either.
Not into the wait? Check out Tony's by-the-slice shop next door. You can order to go and chow down in a local bar, like Vesuvio or Spec's.