San Francisco Essay

San Francisco, This marvelous city of Orange County, California. The charm of the place could be noticed in every single part of your tour. In this paper, we will encourage you to visit San Francisco by delivering some unique information about it. Some remarkable places, weather during the whole year and of course, a little bit about its history. I think it would encourage many to visit this beautiful city. History The city was founded in 1776, when a Spanish presidio and a mission were established at a location chosen by Juan Bautista de Anza.

The little settlement called Yerba Buena was still a village when the Mexican War broke out and a naval force under Commodore John D. Sloat took it (1846) in the name of the United States. It was then named San Francisco (San Francisco, 2004). When gold was discovered in California in 1848, San Francisco had a population of c. 800; two years later it was incorporated with a population of c. 25,000. The rush of gold seekers, adventurers, and settlers brought a period of lawlessness, when the Barbary Coast flourished and the vigilantes were organized to keep peace.

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The city took on a cosmopolitan air, with newcomers arriving from all over the world. In this period the first Chinese settled in the city. In the years after the gold rush, San Francisco continued to grow as California became linked overland with the East, by the pony express in 1860 and by the transcontinental railroad in 1869. On the morning of Apr. 18, 1906, the great San Andreas fault, which extends up and down the California coast, shifted violently, and San Francisco was shaken by an earthquake that, together with the sweeping three-day fire that followed, all but destroyed the city.

Earthquakes have since continued to plague the city and its environs (San Francisco, 2004). The opening of the Panama Canal, a boon to the city’s trade, was celebrated by the Panama-Pacific Exposition of 1915. The spectacular San Francisco–Oakland Bay Bridge was opened in 1936 and the Golden Gate Bridge in 1937. By the time of the Golden Gate International Exposition (1939–40) the whole San Francisco Bay area was heavily industrialized; it had become the leading commercial center of the West Coast. During World War II, San Francisco was the major mainland supply point and port of embarkation for the war in the Pacific.

The United Nations Charter (1945) was drafted at San Francisco, and the Japanese Peace Treaty (1951) was signed there (San Francisco, 2004). San Francisco’s natural beauty and mild climate have made it attractive as a residential city, but it has become split between the very wealthy and many areas of urban impoverishment; the latter have increased since the 1970s. Among the more well-known contemporary neighborhoods are Haight-Ashbury, famous in the 1960s and 70s for its youth (“flower children”), music, and drug cultures; and a large homosexual community that has principally grown around Castro Street (San Francisco, 2004).

George Moscone, the city’s mayor, and Harvey Milk, the first openly gay city supervisor, were assassinated in 1978. A severe earthquake hit the Bay Area in Oct. , 1989, the Marina district was the site of the most severe damage in San Francisco. In 1995 the city elected its first African-American mayor, Willie Brown, Jr. , a former speaker of the state assembly (San Francisco, 2004). Weather San Francisco’s weather is as changeable as the seas, literally. Surrounded on all sides by ocean and bay, San Francisco’s weather is also one of the hardest to forecast and changes drastically from neighborhood to neighborhood.

Over four seasons, not one of which corresponds to its climatic expectations, San Francisco’s weather can be difficult for visitors to predict. (Official Site of San Francisco, n. d. ) San Francisco Spring: March-May March, April and May are some of the most inviting months to visit San Francisco. Characteristically cloudless and mild, some of the warmest and driest days of the year occur in San Francisco’s spring months, making San Francisco’s springtime noticeably free from the spring showers that moisten other parts of the United States (Official Site of San Francisco, n. d. )

San Francisco Summer: June-August San Francisco summers have scant in common with summers elsewhere. Marked by billowing white fog, the majestic product of sea spray, wind and Central Valley heat, San Francisco summers are characteristically overcast and cool, while the marine layer usually burns off by the afternoon. By late August, however, the fog thins and produces the iconic white finger of white pouring through the Golden Gate Bridge, rolling over Treasure Island and splaying against the Berkeley and Oakland hills, missing much of San Francisco altogether (Official Site of San Francisco, n. . ). San Francisco Fall: September-November Fall in San Francisco is truly the best time of year for weather. Days are warm and sunny, sometimes blisteringly so, and nights are mild and clear. Rainfall is rare, the fog has cleared and the long warming process has reached its magnificent zenith, making September, October and early November the three best months to visit San Francisco (Official Site of San Francisco, n. d. ) San Francisco Winter: December-February Snow in San Francisco is rare, even in San Francisco’s coldest months of the year, December and January.

Rain, on the other hand, is abundant and storms from the moist coasts of Mexico and Central America bring anything from light showers to torrential downpours from December through February. On the whole, San Francisco winters are mild compared to the rest of the country, and days between storms can be surprisingly crisp and sunny. (Official Site of San Francisco, n. d. ). The Best Times to Visit San Francisco While June, July and August typify summer in most of the Northern hemisphere, San Francisco (as in many areas) does not conform to expectations.

With an annual “Indian Summer,” September to November is the best time to visit San Francisco. Daily temperatures are at their highest across the peninsula, usually in the mid to high 60s, but often reaching into the 80s and 90s, and make for a sweltering downtown and a jam-packed Golden Gate Park. A smooth, glassy bay and hot blasts from the Central Valley combine to make fall temperatures in San Francisco the best. During these months, Ocean Beach and Baker Beach are dotted with bikini-clad San Franciscans slathered in oil and soaking the sun like Los Angelians.

Nights are warm and lend to summer dresses and short-sleeved shirts, while the sky is clear and stars are bright (Official Site of San Francisco, n. d. ). Earthquakes Earthquakes in San Francisco will always be there, most of which you’ll never notice. (Lenkert, 2003, p. 167). In the 12 years since the Loma Prieta Earthquake of 1989, San Francisco has undergone an astonishing transformation, rivaling the reconstruction after the 1906 Earthquake and Fire. One of the greatest recent achievements has been the restoration of the city’s waterfront.

The former double-decked elevated Embarcadero Freeway, which was built in the late 1950s and disfigured the city’s access to the Bay, was badly damaged in the 1989 earthquake and has been torn down to be replaced with a fine boulevard, lined with stately rows of Canary Island palm trees (Ellis,2002) Where to go There are some cities that are best seen on foot, and San Francisco is one of them. It is confined by bay and sea to a mere 47 square miles of highly coveted real estate.

The result, not surprisingly, is an incredibly dense concentration of interesting culture, architecture, food, and urban life. Americans may think big as a whole, but most San Franciscans are content to coexist in crowded—and dearly priced—confines, a small price to pay for living in one of the world’s most popular cities. There are few places on earth where one can find so much to do, see, eat, and enjoy within such a condensed and readily walkable radius. Truth is, San Francisco is one big, beautiful walking tour(Lenkert,2003,p. 1). Union Square Past ; Present

There’s no better way to indulge in San Francisco’s metropolitan culture than to begin at Union Square. Here, not only can you do enough department-store shopping to max out all your credit cards, but you can also stroll through a notorious late- 19th-century red-light district, catch a bird’s-eye view from a high-rise, and see the effect that the devastating 1906 earthquake had on some of San Francisco’s most famous downtown landmarks (Lenkert, 2003, p. 2). The Culture ; Cuisine of Chinatown An exotic afternoon awaits you within the maze of small, crowded streets that make up Chinatown.

Here, you can taste dim sum delicacies you can’t pronounce (let alone identify); join locals in herb and tea shops, and set foot on the exact spot where the American flag was raised and gold-rush fever began (Lenkert, 2003, p. 2). Noshing Through North Beach The pleasures of eating well, with an occasional sidebar or two of historical interest interjected for good measure, make up the theme of this waddle. Food, food, and more food washed down with copious quantities of good coffee, beer, and wine form its centerpiece. All that’s required of you is an appetite (Lenkert, 2003, p. 2). The Storied Steps of Telegraph Hill

San Francisco is a city of stairs, and no other walk is replete with so many steps—both up and down—as this one. It starts with a little shopping on Grant Street in North Beach, then winds its way up to Coit Tower and back down to sea level by way of the famed Filbert Steps (Lenkert, 2003, p. 3). The Haughty Hotels of Nob Hill History buffs, hotel hounds, and gear heads will love this tour, which begins in high style at the top of Nob Hill and winds its way through some of San Francisco’s finest hotels, past a trio of gorgeous homes, finally ending at the riveting Cable Car Museum (Lenkert, 2003, p. 3). The Ghosts of Russian Hill

San Francisco has always been a haven for writers, poets, and architects, many of whom resided on the steep slopes of Russian Hill. Literary history, scenery, and serenity pervade this walk, which is a must for both American-literature buffs and fans of the architect Willis Polk (Lenkert, 2003, p. 3). South of Market: A Civilized Afternoon of Arts ; Leisure Only recently has South of Market become the area of choice for a civilized and culturally stimulating afternoon with the Museum of Modern Art and the Yerba Buena Gardens within a few blocks of one another. (Lenkert, 2003, p. 3). A Historical Flashback through Haight-Ashbury

This walk takes you to the house where The Grateful Dead lived and played in the ’60s, pauses for a historical flashback or two, leads you to some great cheap-food noshes, and shows you where to buy retro paraphernalia. It’s a colorful visit to an only-in-San-Francisco scene (Lenkert, 2003, p. 6). Golden Gate Park: Museums, Blooms ; Trees from Dunes This Golden Gate Park tour offers an intimate introduction to the most beautiful, diverse, and entertaining walk in the world. Between stops to smell the flowers, you’ll encounter an extensive collection of Asian art, penguins, and crocodiles, as well as a great gilded Buddha. Lenkert, 2003, p. 6) The Golden Gate As far as views go, there’s nothing more magical than hoofing it along the city’s northern shore, where ogle-worthy ocean and bay panoramas are backed by exclusive homes, bustling marinas, and pristine nature preserves (Lenkert, 2003, p. 6). Geology wonders Sit back ; relax while your driver and guide share the wonders of Yosemite National Park with you. He or she will entertain ; educate you on the history, geology, current events, flora ; fauna of the “Crown Jewel of National Parks” as well as answering any questions you may have.

The morning begins with the spectacular sights from Washburn Point ; Glacier Point of Yosemite Valley, Little Yosemite Valley, Half Dome, Starr King, Clouds Rest, Vernal ; Nevada Falls and more You will have time to walk out to Glacier Point, where you can look down from 7000′ to the Valley where we will tour & stop for lunch later in the day (Official Site of San Francisco, n. d. ) Making “photo stops” at the view points, you will see E1 Capitan, Yosemite & Bridal veil Falls, the Three Brothers, Cathedral Rocks & much more… s we make our way into Yosemite Village & the Visitor’s Center at lunch time. Approximately an hour of free time will be spent there. A full service deli, pizza, hamburgers, hot dogs ; all of the accompaniments are available. Exhibits, displays ; gift shops are also located at the Visitor’s Center (Official Site of San Francisco, n. d. ) The San Francisco River had a very high percentage of riparian scrub species. Salt cedar, burro brush, mesquite and seep willow account for 90% of the woody species recorded on that River (Hendrix&Warner, 1984, p. 102).


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