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Old 12-11-2009, 09:44 AM
 
5 posts, read 7,882 times
Reputation: 10

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My 12 yr old son and I are going to be spending two weeks in the Bay area. We are staying in Burlingame close to the airport and have a list of things to see in San Francisco and the surrounding areas. What is the best way to get into San Francisco? Drive or by train? Which train BART or Cal? (Our hotel is supposed to offer a free shuttle to SFO & Trains) Here are a few of the places we would like to hit.

Fishermans Wharf
Alcatraz
Union Square
Chinatown
Exploratorium
Golden Gate Park
Basically the touristy stuff.

I am also wondering if the Tanforan Mall area is OK. Heard this area in general can be kinda of rough. But I used to live in NYC so I'm not sure what their standard for rough is. Just thinking ahead in case we decide to go see a movie Xmas day.

And if you have an areas to avoid list that would be great too. We'll be driving around the Burbs just to check out the area. ie Pacifica, San Jose, Dublin, Berkeley, Six Flags up in Vallejo & maybe Santa Rosa area.

I've also heard mention of a free trolley running into Burlingame downtown. Anyone know anything about this?

Thanks for the help!
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Old 12-11-2009, 10:31 AM
 
Location: Northern California
3,480 posts, read 9,201,692 times
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Tanforan Mall is OK. There is a BART station next to the mall which will take you to downtown SF (get off at the Powell St station, 2 blocks from Union Square. The cable car line starts at the BART station). The downside is the mall is next to the airport and can be noisy.

There is no trolley in Burlingame. Caltrain stops in Burlingame and you can take that into SF also, except the train station is a way from Market St. (downtown) but you can take a light rail train from the Caltrain station to the downtown area and get off at Powell St.
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Old 12-11-2009, 12:27 PM
 
Location: In them thar hills
8,064 posts, read 10,109,299 times
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RE: " I've also heard mention of a free trolley running into Burlingame downtown"

Actually, humboldrat, like many Peninsula communities, Burlingame indeed has a downtown shuttle. I've seen it. Can probably get details from the Burlingame government web site or chamber of commerce one.
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Old 12-11-2009, 02:15 PM
 
Location: Northern California
3,480 posts, read 9,201,692 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BayAreaHillbilly View Post
RE: " I've also heard mention of a free trolley running into Burlingame downtown"

Actually, humboldrat, like many Peninsula communities, Burlingame indeed has a downtown shuttle. I've seen it. Can probably get details from the Burlingame government web site or chamber of commerce one.
A shuttle bus OK, but a "trolley"?
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Old 12-11-2009, 10:34 PM
 
5 posts, read 7,882 times
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Thanks for all the info. Now I've got a much better idea of where I'm going and it's sounds pretty easy to get around.

I did find the shuttle and trolley info on the Burlingame website. I never thought about a town that size having it's own website. Thanks! And they have 2 shuttles and 1 trolley. The trolley runs from hotel row to Cal Train and the shopping district. From roughly Noon to 8PM.

http://www.burlingame.org/modules/Sh...ocumentid=4688

Thanks again! I can't wait to get out of this snow/ice & sub zero temps.
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Old 12-12-2009, 10:23 AM
 
Location: Bay Area
3,165 posts, read 4,654,568 times
Reputation: 2943
Quote:
Originally Posted by elai13 View Post
My 12 yr old son and I are going to be spending two weeks in the Bay area. We are staying in Burlingame close to the airport and have a list of things to see in San Francisco and the surrounding areas. What is the best way to get into San Francisco? Drive or by train? Which train BART or Cal? (Our hotel is supposed to offer a free shuttle to SFO & Trains) Here are a few of the places we would like to hit.

Fishermans Wharf
Alcatraz
Union Square
Chinatown
Exploratorium
Golden Gate Park
Basically the touristy stuff.

I am also wondering if the Tanforan Mall area is OK. Heard this area in general can be kinda of rough. But I used to live in NYC so I'm not sure what their standard for rough is. Just thinking ahead in case we decide to go see a movie Xmas day.

And if you have an areas to avoid list that would be great too. We'll be driving around the Burbs just to check out the area. ie Pacifica, San Jose, Dublin, Berkeley, Six Flags up in Vallejo & maybe Santa Rosa area.

I've also heard mention of a free trolley running into Burlingame downtown. Anyone know anything about this?

Thanks for the help!
I think all of your plans sound great! Don't forget the new Academy of Sciences and in particular the Planetarium show- its' really worth it (get your tickets right after you get in so it won't be sold out later--also try to do this on a weekday- this place is packed on the weekends). I think your son will really like this!

Another cool place that he might really get a kick out of is "Fort Point" (right under the Golden Gate Bridge and FREE!) Bring warm coats.

As for shopping- try the Stonestown mall on your way into the City (on 19th Ave) coming in from Burlingame. I'm pretty sure there's still a movie theatre there as well. It's a nicer, cleaner looking mall, imo. Don't forget to book ahead for Alcatraz- it can get very busy. If you're going to Six Flags (I think they might be closed for the winter though)..I wouldn't recommend driving around Vallejo for pleasure (there are some not some nice neighborhoods that you really wouldn't want to get lost in)

If you're in San Jose--definitely take him to the "Tech Museum". My kids always have a blast with all science experiments.
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Old 12-26-2009, 11:34 AM
 
5 posts, read 7,882 times
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clongirl
Thanks so much for the info. We are having a great time. I can't get over how clean the trains, water and city in general is compared to NYC. I've never seen a major metro where you can actually walk along the shores that are so beautifully kept. I love Chinatown. I haven't had a Pork Bun that good since I lived in NYC. I'll definitely set the GPS to go straight to Six Flags and back as we're going there for New Years Eve.
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