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San Francisco with Kids
Top 10 things to do with kids in San Francisco
There are plenty of reasons for adults to visit San Francisco – the food, the architecture, the arts, the history – but kids find some of these grown-up pursuits yawn-inducing. Fortunately, there are many kid-friendly activities in San Francisco. As a bonus, many of these activities sneak in a little education and cultural appreciation as well.
And so, without further ado, here are the top ten kid-approved family activities in San Francisco.
Only in San Francisco
Lombard Street. In Russian Hill just past Hyde Street, Lombard Street plunges down a steep hill that has earned it the nickname “the crookedest street in the world.” The block is riddled with switchbacks to help cars get down Lombard in one piece. Enjoy the view of the Bay from the top of Hyde Street, where the Powell-Hyde Street cable car stops, then walk downhill on the sidewalk past lovely Victorian houses and white-knuckled drivers. Or drive down the hill yourself, if you dare!
The Golden Gate Bridge. Why drive across this San Francisco icon when you can walk across it instead? Pedestrians can walk across the east side of the bridge, which has stunning views of the city and San Francisco Bay, yearlong from 5 a.m. to 6 p.m.; hours are longer during Daylight Savings time. There is also a gift center on the southeast (San Francisco) side of the bridge. Take Highway 101 northbound toward the bridge, then turn off at the last San Francisco exit to reach the parking lot for the pedestrian entrance.
Cable car lines. San Francisco currently maintains three cable car lines that originate in the downtown area. The cable cars are designed to carry passengers over some hilly sections of San Francisco, and offer a slow but exhilarating ride full of views, screeching cables, and clanging bells. My favorite line, the Powell-Hyde line, begins at Powell Street and Market Street and ends at Aquatic Park on the San Francisco Bay. Children 4 and under ride free, while everyone else pays $5.00 (collected by the conductor). If you plan to take many trips on public transportation during your visit, purchase a SFMUNI 7-day CityPass for free cable car rides. If your kids (or grownups) love cable cars, stop by the free Cable Car Museum at 1201 Mason Street – the Powell-Hyde line goes right by it. more –>