Day one in SF--After getting some
more sleep (after getting the LARGE van exchanged for a car); went to THE tourist destination: Fisherman’s Wharf and Ghirardelli Square. Crowds, shops, street performers, crowds, sea lions, crowds, expensive parking.
Day two in SF--Mass Transit to the California Academy of Science in Golden Gate Park. BART from the end of the line to City Center, transfer to Muni street-car (light rail) N-Judah line. This
Muni line runs under Market Street and then through another tunnel on its way to the south side of Golden Gate Park. Total travel time about 1.5 hours (it would have been faster by car but not as interesting).
California Academy of Science is in a brand new building. Inside is very industrial with a very cold/hard feel. The exhibits were great. Started with the aquarium, went through the Africa hall, the Galapagos and climate change exhibits--all great. The Rainforest was the best. Didn’t have time for the planetarium. Did get up to see the green roof--they had a docent explaining it (That is something the Minneapolis Central Library should do--maybe at least once a week tours of the green roof.) I was kind of expecting fore physics and technology. Except for the planetarium, this science museum clearly focuses on biology and does it extremely well.
On the way back, we went up to the
surface when we got off the Muni at City Center, walked around Civic Center (clearly influenced by the City Beautiful movement), walked along the Tenderloin part of Market street to Powell, had some coffee and people watched (the lines for the Powell Street Cable Car were amazing--looked like all tourists--I wonder if SF natives ever take it as transit). BART back to the hotel.