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The Westcoast Connection Blog

Life Changing Experiences

San Francisco is Golden! – CALIFORNIA & THE CANYONS

There is something magical about a group of strangers coming together from all parts of the country, and the world. Individuals from Canada, Lebanon, Europe, and the States arrived in San Francisco, ready to embark on a journey of self fulfillment, joy, and whimsy. This is our trip, our adventure, our story.

san francisco cali canyons blog 1 photo 1After dropping by our hotel, it was off to the San Francisco cable cars which took us to Chinatown. Along the way we enjoyed the optimism of the cable car operator who let us ring the bell and wave to onlookers. He also slowed down the car so we could take a picture of the rolling hills that San Francisco is known for. After the short ride, we found ourselves in Chinatown where we had a delicious Chinese food buffet. Only 1 day in, and everyone went to bed with a smile on their face!

The next day we toured Alcatraz – a lone building standing strong in the middle of the island. The vast emptiness of the cell blocks and the stories that were told by the audio tour, including different sound effects such as the clanking of a wooden baton on a jail cell, the taunting from the prisoners, and the prison jargon used, made it seem surreal.

The Alcatraz tour was followed by a trip to Pier 39 for lunch and Ghirardelli square for dessert, which sold fancy chocolate concoctions worthy of Charlie and his Chocolate Factory!

The final event for the day was a baseball game at the AT&T Ball Park. The San Francisco Giants, and the Miami Marlins battled it out in a close game. The home team fans were majority, dressed up in their colors and faces painted. A few from our group on the other hand, cheered for their home town team, which ironically were the Marlins. At the end, they did prevail and the Marlins won 5-4. The day ended with a beautiful sunset over the AT&T Ball Park.

After breakfast we set out to cross the iconic Golden Gate Bridge. The clouds loomed over the bridge, swooping down from the mountain pass and onto the bay. We had the opportunity to take scenic photos before stepping onto the footpath across the bay. One of the highlights of the walk was being treated to a spectacular show from a couple of curious whales swimming in the water below. A couple trip members also spotted some seals playing in the water. The trip ended on the other side of the bridge where the bus picked us up for lunch in Sausalito.

san francisco cali canyons blog 1 photo 2Sausalito is this cute area across the bay from downtown San Francisco, with a gorgeous waterfront where people dock their boats. The calm demeanor of the area, coupled with the summer vibes seemed to relax everyone. The waterfront is also lined with small restaurants that serve authentic cuisine from different parts of the world, which gave everyone plenty of options for lunch before heading out to Lombard Street. To get to Lombard street, we had to trek up a steep hill; everyday is leg day while in San Francisco! At the top of the street was a view that overlooked the landscape of the city, featuring winding roads and flower beds running parallel to the street.

Next we went to the bowling alley for some friendly competition. Everyone enjoyed bowling, and who doesn’t as it brings out the inner kid in us?! Our time in San Francisco was soon ending, so it seemed like everyone was walking a few paces slower than usual, trying to take one final glance of this beautiful city.

San Francisco will forever be known as the place that sparked the beginning of this adventure for our group! Already the members are making bonds that will only get stronger as the trip goes on. The pictures we took, the memories we made, and the views we saw are now part of our story. Next stop, Lake Tahoe!

Until Next Time,

The Westcoast Blogger

Interested in learning more about Westcoast Connection’s California & the Canyons tour? Check out our 21-day middle school and 21-day high school tours for students!