San Francisco 2016!

The city with so much to do, however, it only seems like my parents and I made a minor dent in a long list of possibilities, but we checked almost everything off our list!

This getaway was originally planned for last summer until my grandfather had to make the hospital his permanent residence before his time came to an end. There was no way we could have guessed when we would have our heads partially out of the thick waters until after the holidays were over. Thus, late February turned out to be a great time to escape reality!

Some of the spots we checked out were pretty touristy, but I was happy to experience them for myself, such as: riding the trolley around the downtown area of San Francisco, slowly creaking up the tracks as you tilt your body forward so you wouldn't fall out of your seat; tasting homemade mint chocolate chip ice cream with Ghirardelli fudge on top from the original Ghirardelli location; finding the Painted Ladies shortly after the Netflix release of the new series from your favorite childhood TV show, Fuller House; going across one of the most historic bridges in U.S. history and capturing the beauty of it in daylight and in the fog. The list goes on...

Luckily, with a rental car, we had no limitations on our transportation which enabled us to travel outside of San Francisco, possibly the major highlight of the trip. 

City life has its perks, but exploring nature in Muir Woods was breathtaking. Walking down the paths between huge redwood trees, the only direction you were looking was forward and up. 
We took one day to drive around the wine country! I was so amazed by how green the vegetation and the vineyards were at this time. Although the majority of the vineyards were not producing, probably due to the off-season, but seeing the set-up of the vineyards was very cool. We spent the majority of our day in Sonoma. This is a very cute little town in the wine country with a town square which held shops, cute restaurants and family owned winery stores for tastings. We stopped for a wine tasting at Roche Winery and learned all about each wine and how they differ from each other. They were all delicious!
One of my favorite communities we spent time in was Sausalito! The scenery reminded of what Italy and Greece has looked like in pictures. Little quaint shops and restaurants line up along the bay coast and essentially face the San Francisco skyline. Absolutely stunning! We gazed out to the sea and at times would see little faces looking back at us from sea otters!

Throughout the week, we had the chance to meet up with friends and relatives! It was so nice to see all of them and reconnect. 
To end our trip, we took a drive down the coastline to Monterey and Carmel By The Sea. Talk about a view!!! Monterey was such a cool town/community to visit. Everything was quaint and almost reminded of a small town in Colorado. When we arrived, we found a place for drinks and fresh calamari called The Fish Hopper. 

While enjoying the ocean scenery, a seagull flew and landed on the outer edge of the pier foundation and stayed for a good 15 minutes. After dinner, we looked around and found a place called "A Taste of Monterey" for a wine tasting. As much as I loved the wine, the view while enjoying the wine was even better.
The next day, we drove even further south to Carmel By The Sea, on the 17 mile beach route that took us through Pebble Beach Golf Course. I can see why this course is one of the places to play! Oh, and did I mention the houses... no, no, not house, I mean huge mansions??!! Yes, we saw a lot of those too. 
This trip was filled with scenery and sites that Oklahoma lacks, along with the fresh seafood! There was so much to do, but this will definitely be a place I will visit again to do even more. 



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