Walking up to 5 miles, climbing stairways, getting on/off a cable car; forested trails and hills at Presidio Park.
At the hotel
To begin today’s field trip, we’ll take public transportation to Pacific Heights and walk through Billionaire’s Row with a local expert. We’ll continue walking to the Presidio, one of the oldest sections of San Francisco. For many years this wonderful urban park area was the center of military activity in the city. Now open to the public for all to enjoy, the group leader will take you through noted artist Andy Goldworthy’s “Wood Line,” a trail of eucalyptus trunks lining the trail of a eucalyptus grove. You will also see a newly reforested area of Monterey cypress trees.
At El Polin Spring, we'll have boxed lunches with a sandwich, salad, fruit, and fruit drink. This was the first populated portion of the Presidio where civilians lived, making it one of the first neighborhood in San Francisco.
The Presidio’s chief archeologist and chief biologist will give a presentation on the excavation findings at El Polin Spring and the effort to bring the area back to its original state. Next, the group leader will take us to to see another Andy Goldsworthy work of art, “Spire.” Be inspired by this sculpture of 37 Monterey cypress tree trunks. Then, overlooking the San Francisco National Cemetery take in breathtaking views of the Golden Gate Bridge and Marin Headlands. We continue our walk into the Marina District, a neighborhood bordering San Francisco Bay. After the 1906 earthquake, San Francisco hosted the 1915 Pan-Pacific Exposition. Many temporary buildings were constructed for the expo, including the Palace of Fine Arts. When the fair was over, all the buildings came down except the palace. Today, residents along the main street have enviable views of the Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz, Angel Island, sailboats, cargo ships. Via public transportation, we’ll head to explore Ghiradelli Square and Fisherman’s Wharf with the Group Leader. In 1893, Domingo Ghiradelli converted a woolen mill into a chocolate factory. In the 1960s, the factory moved and the square was slated to be torn down and replaced with an apartment building. A private citizen bought the square and converted the space to a restaurant and retail complex, the first of its kind in the country. Fisherman’s Wharf was established by Italian immigrants shortly after the Gold Rush as they fished the waters of San Francisco Bay. Although now a major tourist attraction, there is still a fleet of active fishing boats berthed in the area. The Group Leader will focus on the history of the wharf, showing us a floating national park, fishing vessels, and the Fishermen’s and Seamen’s Memorial Chapel.
At a family-owned Fisherman's Wharf restaurant popular with locals, our plated 3-course meal includes a choice of soup or salad, choice of entrée, and dessert. Beverage choices include coffee, tea, water; other beverages available for purchase.
We’ll return to the hotel via the famous Hyde Street cable car. The remainder of the evening is at leisure.