San Francisco Golden Gate
« back

San Francisco

Sitting on 43 hills, and surrounded on three sides by water, San Francisco is ideally located so that almost every one of its streets ends or begins with a panoramic sea view. Some call it The City By the Bay, but to most of its residents, it is known simply as The City. Seldom has there been such a passion for preserving the past with its colorful legends and architecture as there is in San Francisco. Seven times, it has been rebuilt after fires and earthquakes; and seven times, it has been carefully and lovingly restored.

The city varies in altitude from sea level to 929 feet because of its configuration. The combined effect of the many hills, the Pacific Ocean, San Francisco Bay, and the Golden Gate Bridge is stunning in its beauty and scope.

Established in 1835 as a resting place along the trail and called Yerba Buena, the village had fewer than 100 inhabitants for 13 years. The discovery of gold rapidly raised that population figure to over 10,000. Only a handful made a fortune from gold, but many stayed on to develop the city that became San Francisco.

Today San Francisco is an important industrial, tourist and financial center. Its financial district is often called “Wall Street West.” The city port handles huge amounts of cargo annually and ranks among the top ten ports in the world for passenger traffic. George R. Moscone Convention Center occupies a city block between third and Fourth Streets and Howard and Folsom Streets and is almost entirely built underground. Across the street, is the Center for the Arts at the Yerba Buena Gardens, a visual and performing arts complex.

San Francisco has a world-class symphony orchestra, opera, and ballet. Other not to be missed attractions are the San Francisco Maritime Museum, the California Academy of Science, the Natural History Museum and the Japanese Tea Garden. Restaurants and nightspots span the entire spectrum of fine cuisine and the best in live music and dance. Sports are at the top of the charts with everything from golf, surfing, fishing, skiing, basketball and swimming to the unforgettable San Francisco 49ers and San Francisco Giants.

In recent years, San Francisco has consistently received the highest score of any city in the United States in Conde Nast Traveler Magazine's Readers' Choice Awards. San Francisco also scored highest in the world in the Restaurant category and highest in the United States in the Environment Ambiance. The year 2000 marked the twelfth of thirteen years that San Francisco has been designated Best City in the United States and the third year as the leader in the Restaurants category.

Start your San Francisco Search                  

San Francisco Hotels

Hilton San Francisco

Hilton San Francisco
from $149 per night
In the heart of Union Square and the theater district .... more

The Maxwell Hotel

The Maxwell Hotel
from $149 per night
A renovated Deco hotel situated in the heart of the Theater District ....more

Argonaut otel

The Argonaut
from $208 per night
Located along Fisherman's Wharf and approximately ....more

Hotel Nikko

The Hotel Nikko
from $199 per night
This contemporary, Japanese-style, high-rise hotel ....more

Radisson Fisherman's Wharf

Radisson Fisherman's Wharf
from $140 per night
This is the only Fisherman's Wharf hotel to face the bay...more

Hyatt Regency San Francisco

Hyatt Regency San Francisco
from $149 per night
The Hyatt has long been at the cornerstone of the city's dynamic waterfront ... more

save on hotels
Why CaliforniaFunBeaches

Beaches are California's number one tourist destination, generating over $30 billion in spending and supporting over 500,000 jobs. Not only do California beaches provide great vacation opportunities, they are an important part of the environment and the first line of defense against the ravages of coastal storms. Each year, hundreds of miles of shoreline disappear from coastal states and in California 85% of beaches are eroding. We're here to help reverse the tide! Each time you make a reservation, or visit an advertiser, you're generating funds to rebuild California's beaches. 100% of the after-tax profits from our efforts are donated to beach renourishment projects. So, book a great deal and help rebuild great California beaches.

Join our Newsletter!

American Express


© 2006, all rights reserved

Reliability Seal

Search any Destination Worldwide

Check in: select dates with a calendar
Check out: select dates with a calendar
Rooms: Adults:

Advanced Search