Postcards: Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco

golden gate bridge - titabuds aa

It has been called the most photographed bridge in the world and for many, it is also the most recognizable landmark in the United States. Those of us who were already alive during the pre-Facebook era remember that the very first postcards sent home by family and friends newly-arrived in the USA (particularly and usually in California) almost always featured the Golden Gate Bridge. The Empire State Building,Β the lights of Las Vegas, the big ‘Hollywood’ sign, the Grand Canyon and, I daresay, even the Statue of Liberty were second stringers.

The Bridge which turned 75 years old last year is now visited by more than 10 million people every year. On our recent trip to San Francisco, my sister and I decided that adding two more to that number wouldn’t hurt, so off to the orange bridge we went.

We drove up in our tiny rental car to the Southeast Visitor Area. Parking is free for 15 minutes (enough time for several pose & click moments) but we ended up staying for almost an hour. Ahh, tourists.

We went on a weekday in late fall so there were fewer sightseers around.

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One can have a good view of the bridge from the Strauss Plaza, named after the bridge’s chief architect Joseph B. Strauss.

golden gate bridge  - titabuds (3)(That’s him standing over there with his back to the bridge, saying nothing.)

The plaza is surrounded by a lovely garden which was abloom even in late November. This is California after all.

golden gate bridge by titabuds

There are also scale models of the bridge for those interested in civil engineering concepts andΒ scientific explanations. πŸ™‚

golden gate bridge model - titabuds

A few steps down from the Strauss Plaza, one can get an even closer view of the bridge.

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There are also pedestrian paths and bike lanes for those in pursuit of six-packs and golden calves.

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This part of San Francisco has a long history as a military station, from the time of California’s Spanish conquistadores to the American Civil War. Below one arch of the bridge is the Fort Point National Historic Site.

fort point - titabuds

Near Fort Point and below the bike lanes is an area called Battery East where earthen mounds used to house some of the Fort’s cannons.

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Seen in the distance is the island of Alcatraz which is also quite popular with tourists. (I’ll always associate it with Clint Eastwood, hehe.)

Golden gate bridge - titabuds b

From the Strauss Plaza, one can go up to the Golden Gate Bridge Roundhouse and Pavilion to grab a snack, inquire about guided tours, and buy souvenirs. (Of course, I got myself a newΒ bookmark.) Β On the stairs leading up to the Roundhouse, ‘Welcome’ is written in several languages, including Pilipino, which I think is a very nice touch.

golden gate bridge roundhouse - titabuds (800x360)

We decided not to walk across the bridge as it was already getting late and there will be more opportunities for it in the future but then, after we left the Visitor Area we took a wrong turn and found ourselves drivingΒ on the bridge anyway.

We considered it a happy accident. πŸ™‚

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40 thoughts on “Postcards: Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco

    • It is! I do love it. We were there only for a short time and there’s still so much left to see and do. And eat! πŸ™‚ I’ll be going back maybe in a year or so, haha (and now that I know you’re there, I’ll be sure to let you know when I do.) πŸ™‚

  1. Tita, you visited SF??? Wish I knew. I live North of the Bridge. We have to get together when you next come over. I am never tired of driving over the bridge, we take friends and family for a walk, to take photos and yet, I love seeing it through new eyes, every time. So glad you got to spend some time walking and exploring. Did you walk the bridge at all?
    So nice to see a post from you and your photos of course. Missed you.

    • Now I wish I’d announced that I was going to SF, hahaha. It would have been great to meet up (and talk about books and CF). Ok, next time, next time. πŸ™‚
      I would have wanted to walk the bridge but our time there was too short. We got a bit lost when we accidentally crossed to the North side. So many hilly little side streets, but I loved the view. πŸ™‚

      • Did you go to a place called Sausalito? It is so beautiful the views of the city alone are stunning. We definitely have to meet up the next time you are here, I can’t wait, books and CF alone will take up our time. Take a ferry over to the north side next time and you’ll have so much fun.

    • Thanks, Gelai. There was one other thing there that made me smile. You know how in elementary school gardens, ang mga halaman may nakapalibot na maliliit na bato na nakaayos pa in a circle? Maraming ganon. Sabi ko sa ate ko, hmm, mukhang Pinoy ang gardener sa Strauss Plaza. πŸ™‚

    • Wahaha! Yes, I’m here, I’m here. πŸ™‚
      We went last November. It’s a really charming city and I plan to go back. I wanted to visit NYC again, too, but I missed it this time. I hope things are back to normal there.

  2. Great photos and great post, Tita! Well done! I do wanna go to San Francisco… so, fingers crossed, I might make that dream come true soon πŸ˜‰

  3. Pingback: Walking Short at San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park | tita buds' blog

  4. This makes me clearly remember our trip there eight months ago. Also accidentally, it was the very day of the 75th anniversary (how timely and exciting, but we didn’t get to go up to Strauss Plaza as it was very crowded. Nice pictures, Tita! πŸ˜€

  5. Pingback: Extra Shots: San Francisco | titabuds.com

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