San Francisco: city of sweeping hills, sun and fog, gourmet delights and incomparable vistas. It’s no wonder this Californian city draws millions of visitors each year. And even if you’re coming to the City by the Bay for business, there are plenty of things to see and do in San Francisco in between meetings. From leading art museums to business friendly drinks destinations, a number of San Francisco’s top draws can be appreciated within the space of an hour.
San Francisco Botanical Garden
Set within the gorgeous surroundings of Golden Gate Park, the San Francisco Botanical Garden is a tranquil place to recover from jetlag or blow off some inter-meeting steam. Offering 55 acres of wandering space and over 8,000 plant species, the Garden makes for an ideal urban oasis.
Golden Gate Bridge
Perhaps it’s an obvious landmark, but the Golden Gate Bridge is one of those rare sights that’s even more extraordinary in person than you might have imagined. The rust-coloured bridge has a walking path, which proves an ideal vantage point for the Bay’s best views
Bourbon & Branch
After a long day in meetings, a dark and cosy speakeasy is the perfect place to retreat. Bourbon and Branch is one of the city’s old guard, a favourite cocktail bar that’s been on the scene since, well. . .actual Prohibition. The space housed a real speakeasy with built-in escape routes, though these days the drinking’s a bit tamer. See if you can finagle your way into Wilson and Wilson, the smaller speakeasy-within-a-speakeasy, for some culinary-minded drinks.
Chef Michael Mina is one of San Francisco’s top culinary dogs, and his eponymous Financial District restaurant is a plush, ecstatically gourmet dining destination. Have your business dinner over a dish of heart-stopping Maine lobster pot pie. Who says you can’t mix work and pleasure?
Blue Bottle Coffee
Presidio Golf Course
Both golf course and historic landmark, Presidio Park lies at the base of the Golden Gate Bridge and, expectedly, provides some pretty unbeatable views. The rolling hills of the former military base offer even diehard golfers a challenging green.
Asian Art Museum
Seeking retail therapy? Voted one of the country’s best shopping streets, Fillmore Street features a mix of established brands and trendy, local boutiques and design outlets. Stretching from Lower Haight up to the Marina District, it offers two and a half miles of browsing opportunities.
Header photo: Walking across the Golden Gate Bridge offers gorgeous views of the Bay © iStock/Thinkstock
Have you been to San Francisco on business? What was your best sightseeing experience? Let us know in the comments below.
Written by Claire Bullen