Situated on a series of hills and surrounded by water on three sides, San Francisco is as equally captivating for the senses as it is for the heart and mind. Old-fashioned cable cars clang up and down the streets, smells of sourdough bread waft out of bakeries and the Golden Gate Bridge - often emerging from a bank of fog - presides over the entire spectacle.
But for every iconic experience in the city, there are 100 more that only the locals know about. San Francisco has countless neighborhoods and cultural enclaves - don't miss a visit to the city's Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) - and a simple stroll among them is often the best way to get acquainted with the city's true spirit.
The best approach to San Francisco is to mix a bit of the iconic with some of the under-the-radar activities and experiences that only the locals know about. Some top experiences to get you started include a Chinatown Walking Tour, a San Francisco Hop-on Hop-off Tour, a Golden Gate Seaplane Tour, or a Golden Gate Bay Cruise. See some of the beautiful areas just outside the city with a Muir Woods and Sausalito Day Trip or day trip to Yosemite National Park, or go a bit further out and visit attractions like the Winchester Mystery House, the cities of Monterey and Carmel, or Napa and Sonoma Wine Country.