In the midst of all of the craziness of moving and coming back to Chicago, I treated myself to a little vacation time. I spent a long weekend in San Francisco with some of my oldest friends, Haley and Megan, and we did a whole lot of eating, drinking, touristing, and sitting around watching choreography YouTube videos. It was awesome.
Over the years I’ve been lucky enough to travel quite a bit, but I’ve done most of it with either my family or significant others. Ever since planning this trip to SF, though, my friends and I have been asking ourselves more and more: why don’t we travel with each other? Schedules can be challenging and money can be tight since we’re all young women working a bunch, but this trip reinforced for me how fun and revitalizing it is to make friends a priority when it comes to travel.
Now that we’re all over the place and we don’t have the same regular breaks from school to see each other we have to carve out time to spend with each other. I’m so glad we’re getting into the habit of it now because these girls are so important to me – when you’ve been friends for 15 years you hang on to them. I can always be myself with them no matter where I’m at in life and I never laugh harder or often than when I’m with them. Here’s to another 15 (and beyond) of travel, adventure, and long life talks over wine.
I put together a little recap of things we did and (mostly) where we ate since I always like to have that stuff for reference. Haley and her boyfriend, Miller, took us to such good spots and had great recommendations that we were stuffed and happy basically the entire time. Here’s my list and some photos, if you’re heading out there sometime soon:
Where We Ate
- Sessions at the Presidio: Great burgers, French fries, and interesting beers
- Gracias Madre: Actually delicious vegan Mexican
- Ragazza: Fresh and light pizza and salad, casual and zagat rated
- Vinyl Coffee and Wine Bar: Big ass breakfast sandwiches and coffee, not too hipster
- Powder Shaved Snow: Ultra light ice cream in very California flavors
- Blue Mermaid: Touristy, but lovely outdoor space to rest your feet
- Souvla: Busy but delish Greek SF-chain, big portions (thanks for taking us here, Meg!)
- The Mill: Toast-centric coffee joint, very hip
Where We Drank
- Napa Valley:
- Emporium SF: Arcade bar in an old converted Theater. Yes, it’s the same one as in Chicago.
- Etcetera Wine Bar: Chill spot for drinks in the Mission. (Another Meg recommendation!)
Sights We Saw
- Clarion Alley Mural Project: Political art by the gallon, very grammable
- Napa Valley Wine Tastings: Definitely a day trip, but worth it if you’re looking for a more relaxed, bougie vibe. Bonus points if you know someone who’s a member at a winery.
- Lands End: My favorite thing we did! Amazing views of the Golden Gate Bridge, pretty laid back “hike”, and can’t beat listening to the ocean for an afternoon.
- The Painted Ladies: Cute and grammable, not really much else to do but walk around though.
- Fisherman’s Wharf: Enjoyed some seafood and beer after our hike in this area. Touristy and cute.
- SFMOMA: Great rainy day activity. I’m a sucker for a great modern art museum and they have a great permanent collection.
- Shopping at Westfield Centre: Right near MOMA and another great spot to stakeout on a rainy day. Is it a vacation if I don’t go to a mall?
- Golden Gate Park: I ran through here one morning and it was gorgeous change of pace from my treadmill.
- Lots of hanging out, watching YouTube videos, eating takeout, and drinking wine.