California Dreamin' Part 1

Do you ever dream something and then wonder if it’s ever going to happen? And then, when it does happen, it feels surreal and you just try to squeeze every last drop of goodness and adventure out of it that you possibly can? Well, that’s this week for us.

View from the car window just around the corner from our lunch spot

Husband and I love to travel. We love adventures of all varieties and are hoping to instill that love in our children while still providing them with a secure childhood. We have a long, loooonnnngggg list of places we want to visit, and, this week, we are crossing one of them off! Well, crossing it off in the sense that we can no longer say we’ve not been here, but there’s so much to see and do in any new place that we can ever cross it off in the “we never want or need to go back there” sense.

View from the restaurant

So where are we?

I’m so glad you asked!

We are in San Francisco!!

Today begins a series of posts describing our trip.

San Francisco Day 1: Daly City/South Bay

We had an early flight from the East Coast, so we were supposed to land in San Francisco before 10am Friday. We were stoked to pick up our rental car and head out to our first adventure. We were planning to get some lunch at a place with a beach view and then drive across the Golden Gate Bridge to hike around Vista Point before heading up to Muir Woods to check out some redwood trees. From there we would cross the bridge back into town to find our hotel before traffic became too crazy. Unfortunately, most of that did not happen. :( But we still had a great day!

Our happy traveler coloring her picture while we wait for lunch to arrive

Everything started out according to plan. Our flight even arrived a few minutes early, but, by the time we finished at baggage claim and made it to the rental car counter the line to pick up our car was two hours long! So A and I tracked down a snack while Husband braved the line. When we finally had our keys in hand and had navigated out of the airport it was already 1pm. We had been warned that traffic would be a disaster by about 3 in the afternoon, so we decided against crossing any bridges at that point.

Instead, we drove to Daly City where we found Louis’ Restaurant, a small diner-style restaurant that’s been around since 1937 and has great views. We enjoyed omelets and English muffins and coffee and then decided to explore the area immediately around the restaurant. As it turns out, Louis’ is located right on the Land’s End Trail which takes you to a couple of awesome lookouts from which you can see the Golden Gate Bridge! It was a great find, and A loved the opportunity to run around and stretch her legs after the long flight.

Golden Gate Bridge in all her glory

We spent a couple hours on the trail and then loaded back up in the car and set off through the city to find our hotel. Obviously, we were well into rush hour by this time; I am so thankful Husband is a good and confident driver because I would have been one big puddle of stress and tears had it been up to me to drive! We have since decided that, when we come back, we’re not going to bother with the car rental for personal use; we’ll just use public transportation because traffic was a mess, and the car really isn’t necessary for anything in the city.

Despite the changes in plan, we had a great time exploring Land’s End Trail, and lunch at Louis’ was delicious! I would happily do both of those again.

To Do Next Time We Visit:

Cross the Golden Gate Bridge

Explore the Marin Headlands, Vista Point, and Muir Woods

Check back in a day or two for part two of our California Adventure!