We took a mini trip to the Inner Sunset district of SF to see the Tiled Steps Project. The area’s supposed to give you amazing views of SF and the Golden Gate Bridge. Unfortunately, it was super foggy on the day we went, so no view for us. But that fog is just so quintessentially SF and gives such an interesting atmosphere in pictures that I can’t complain.
If you visit, be sure to not only walk to the top of the tiled steps, but go up the next set of steps across the street, up into a small wooded area. That’s where the awesome view is supposed to be.
I really wanted to visit China Camp State Park just for the small historic shrimping-fishing Chinese village still open to the public. In the 1880s, the village hit its peak population (~500 Chinese Americans — which, for such a small area, is astounding) but due to increased immigration restrictions and anti-Chinese sentiment, the population dwindled dramatically by 1920s until it eventually closed. One resident, Frank Quan, was born and raised in the village in the 1920s, and still lives there today. (In fact, he runs the diner that sits in the village now, and does the cooking himself!) The village sits on the coast of the San Pablo Bay, among popular hiking and biking trails that run throughout the park.
We’d never much explored Marin County and the north bay, so we decided to make a weekend of it. It’s beautiful, but so surprisingly different from the south bay/peninsula/San Francisco. So much less populated and congested. I was amazed to see that by 8pm, the bustling downtown areas of the major cities were effectively shut down. Even restaurants! (On the plus side, that meant that parking was always very easy to find.)