Tilden Park Merry-Go-Round is located at Tilden Regional Park near Berkeley. It was built in the year 1911 C.E and is one of the few antique carousels left in the United States. It was constructed by the Herschel-Spillman Company of Tonawanda, New York and the carousel was used at amusement parks in San Bernardino, Ocean Beach, and Los Angeles. It was added to the National Registrar of Historic Places on September 29, 1976.
This picturesque stretch of Lombard Street has eight tight turns on a single block. They twist at very acute angles, making for very slow going if you are in a car. Although, oddly enough, cars were the reason for designing the street this way back in 1922. The idea was that this design would make it easier for them to negotiate the steep 16% grade. The drive is usually bumper-to-bumper and in the summertime, there is almost always a line of cars waiting to take the drive down. That being said, going for a stroll along this landmark is a good option, especially when the hydrangeas along the sidewalk are in bloom.
Cupid's Span is located on the waterfront near the Bay Bridge in the magnificent Rincon Park on the Embarcadero. The structure is 60 feet high and is made up of painted fiber glass and stainless steel. Designed by two Swedish artists, Claes Oldenburg and Coosje Van Bruggen, this eye-catchy piece of work is a major attraction in the park.
The Golden Gate Park windmill is located close to the Pacific Ocean and is ideally suited to use the strong ocean winds. Standing 75 feet tall the windmill was used to pump well water for irrigation purpose. The Queens Wilhelmina Tulip Gardens that surround the windmill adds to the beauty of the Golden Gate Park. It also makes it the most picturesque spot in the park and is also referred to as the North Windmill.
You reach Tin How Temple, the oldest Chinese temple in San Francisco (founded 1852) by climbing three flights of steep and narrow stairs in the heart of Chinatown. Once there, after catching your breath, your breath may very well be taken away again. The west wall of this tiny temple is an expanse of intricately carved gilded wood housing the shrine to Tin How, the goddess of Heaven. From the ceiling hang hundreds of paper lanterns, each bearing the name (in Chinese characters) of the person for whom it is intended to bring long life and happiness.
This piece of artwork in the Marina also plays music. The sea-powered organ is a set of pipes that run along the waterfront and extend into the waters of the bay. The organ was built by scientists from the San Francisco Exploratorium. Place your ear against one of the pipes and listen to the music created by the sound of the waves. It's a unique way to enjoy nature and this is, perhaps, one of the few places in the world that you can.
The city hall building is the site of some of San Francisco's finest moments. In 1954 Marilyn Monroe and Joe DiMaggio were married here. In the early 21st Century, over 100 same-sex couples were married by Mayor Gavin Newsom in the foyer. The Renaissance architecture rivals some of the country's most historical structures. Two Parisian architects designed and constructed the building from 1913-1915, and the dome is based on the one crowning St. Peter's Basilica in Rome. Visitors can pick up brochures and take a self-guided tour between 8a-5p, Monday through Friday. A small store, open during normal business hours, sells traditional San Francisco souvenirs including T-shirts, posters and postcards.
The Pioneer's Monument stands as a living symbol to San Francisco's resilience. It was one of the few free-standing structures that withstood the 1906 earthquake. The spear, shield and bear atop the monument symbolize California. The base of the monument is covered with sketches of some of California's earliest pioneers, including Sir Francis Drake and John Sutter. Perhaps the most interesting aspect of this monument is the long-time rumors that circulate about a time capsule buried underneath the structure.
In the heart of Union Square, the imposing Dewey Monument remains a major landmark of the west coast city. Nearly everyone visiting San Francisco stops by this arresting work of public art, which commemorates Admiral George Dewey, the Spanish-American War martyr. Built in the year 1903, it was inaugurated by the then president Theodore Roosevelt who dedicated the memorial to the triumph of George Dewey's army over the Spanish army at Manila Bay of Philippines during the late 19th-century war. The monument was built to the designs of Newton J. Tharp and sculpted by Robert I. Aitken.
Set against the backdrop of the Contemporary Jewish Museum and St. Patrick Church, Jessie Square is a great place to walk your dog, enjoy lunch by the tranquil pool, and indulge in a little people watching. The square is a part of the Yerba Buena Garden Complex and is often used as a venue for live music and dance performances. During the day you will often encounter folk simply lounging about and enjoying the architectural beauty of their surroundings, or taking a break from the bustling Mission Street.
Lotta's Fountain which lies at the intersection of Market street, Kearny and Geary street in Downtown, was dedicated in 1875 by Lotta Crabtree who was a Broadway entertainer. The drinking fountain is one of the oldest surviving landmarks in San Francisco. The fountain served as a meeting point during the horrific 1906 earthquake and fire.
Ross Alley in Chinatown is one of the oldest alleys in San Francisco. The notorious alley was once famous for its brothels and gambling and is now renowned for its murals depicting the life of the American Chinese community. Chinatown, a favorite amongst tourists visiting San Francisco has several shops and food joints to cater to the varied crowds. The alley's major attraction is the Golden Gate Fortune Cookies Factory which makes around 20,000 handmade cookies a day and one is welcome to see them prepare the same and sample them as well!