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San Francisco - September 2003

We got up in the morning at around 7am CET, flew Vienna - Washington and Washington - Oakland and then travelled via rental car from Oakland to Sausalito. Totally worn out we arrived late evening on Saturday, September 13 in our Hotel near San Francisco. After being up for more than 24 hours we finally could get some proper sleep at the Holiday Inn Express Sausalito in Mill Valley.
The next day we drove across the Golden Gate Bridge without even noticing it - it was just too foggy. We parked our car in the parking garage at Ghirardelli Square and then strolled to Fisherman's Wharf. The fog lifted around noon and made way for sunshine. We spent the whole day just with enjoying the atmosphere, walking, shopping and riding the Cable Car. Our lunch was excellent - Clam Chowder in a Sourdough Boule on the patio at Dante's Seafood and Grill, Pier 39.
On Monday morning, as we drove southbound Interstate 101 towards San Francisco, we could see the Golden Gate Bridge for the first time, so we took the last exit before the bridge and drove up the street leading to the Golden Gate National Recreation Area. There are some perfect spots to take pictures of the bay, the bridge and the San Francisco skyline in the background. We returned to this spot on Wednesday morning, when the weather was even more perfect – then not even one single cloud was in the sky.
We spent Monday with following the 49-mile drive, which is marked with blue-and-white seagull signs. Nevertheless there were two major intersections, where we could not find the signs and had to go by our intuition. The most memorable stop at this drive was Twin Peaks, where we could enjoy amazing views onto the city of San Francisco. We then had lunch at the Fog City Diner, 1300 Battery Street. Their Salmon BLT with lemon-tarragon aioli served with sweet potato fries just hit the spot. Another highlight of the day was the one hour bay cruise we took with Red and White Fleet. Our dinner at Joe's Crab Shack Fisherman's Wharf on the other hand was not worth the time nor the money.On Tuesday morning we stopped by the local Weight Watchers branch in Larkspur for a weigh-in (we take our lifetime memberships very seriously) and then drove north to tour the beautiful and scenic Napa Valley. Wednesday, September 17 we checked out of our hotel, drove across the Golden Gate Bridge one last time and headed for Monterey.