Best ways to experience San Francisco

Best ways to experience San Francisco, looking at the Golden Gate Bridge

San Francisco is perhaps the most famous city in the world. There’s so much to see and do in the so-called City by the Bay that you might have no idea how to go about it. There are so many ways to experience San Francisco, after all, more than one can count.

And that kind of paralysis by analysis can – and will – ruin your time in this wonderful place. You’ll be stressed out without doing anything fun, and you’ll be going back home with sour memories. If you worry about this happening to you, fear not! This handy guide will show you all the best ways to enjoy San Francisco.

That said, you might not be a tourist sticking around for a short while. Maybe you’re moving to San Francisco from another city, and you’ll have all the time in the world to soak in the sights. If so, you’ll still want to read on. This city has so much going on that, eventually, it doesn’t become a matter of what you see, but how you see it.

So let’s get started.

Create a streamlined itinerary for sight-seeing in a hurry

Every trip has its complications, and these problems usually cost you time otherwise spent taking in your location. Whether it’s lost items or broken bags, it all eats up the hours. This is pretty much a constant truth, so you ought to prepare for it whenever you travel.

You can fix most of these problems – keep track of your things, have a quality traveling bag, and so on. However, you can’t take back lost time. In case you’re pressed for time, it’s a great idea to have a quick-and-dirty itinerary on hand for emergencies. The best way to make one is to write down everything you would love to see.

Poke around on the Internet to approximate how much time it would roughly take to visit each of those places. Put the ones that require a lot of time in a to-dump list. For extra effectiveness, see which sights are near one another and cluster them in a single day’s worth of sightseeing. Try separating some time for things like buying special gifts and souvenirs for your close ones, if possible.

Woman writing on notebook
Write down your top destinations that you have time for

This means you’ll, sadly, have to miss out on some experiences. For instance, visiting Alcatraz is basically a day-long process, from the ferry rides to the tour itself. And that’s if you call ahead to book a spot on this tour – doing it impromptu is even more complicated.  If you’re dead set on seeing Alcatraz, maybe consider taking an evening tour instead. You’ll still experience San Francisco, but you may need to make a few sacrifices.

Ride/rent out bikes to experience San Francisco healthily

There’s nothing quite like riding a bike in SF on a sunny spring day. Not only is it a healthy alternative to driving or taking the bus/trolly, but it also saves you loads of time otherwise spent walking. You have the speed of a vehicle tour combined with the autonomy to go and stop wherever you like. As long as you’ve brought your essentials for traveling, you’ll be enjoying the best of both worlds.

If you don’t have your own bike to ride, don’t worry. Being such a large city and tourist attraction, San Francisco has its fair share of bike renting agencies. They’re very professional for the most part: they provide well-functioning bikes, helmets, and escorts that know the city well. San Francisco sights are a delight to marvel at this way, believe me.

San Francsico cable car
Cable care are neat, but bikes are healthier

Categorize types of activities

It’s an understatement to say that this city is packed with things to do. You definitely won’t get too far trying to pack everything into your schedule. To properly experience San Francisco, you need to organize your sight-seeing by categories.

What does that mean? Well, if you’re a bit of a gourmand, you can research great places to eat in San Francisco. Or, if you’re more of a nightlife kind of person, look up the best clubs. You can classify these into neat categories that let you quickly organize your day to your liking.

Not sure what this is all about? Don’t worry, you’ll see below.

Awesome bars and restaurants in San Francisco

Here’s an example of a list of what to see in San Francisco. It’s about great places for eating and drinking (with an emphasis on cheesy goodies).

–           Hog Island Oyster Company: great oysters, grilled cheese;

–           Daily Driver: organic bagels, cream cheese;

–           Cowgirl Creamery: European-style cheese;

–           Gott’s Roadside: burgers and milkshake;

–           Vive La Tarte: “tacros” (taco-croissants);

–           Slanted Door: whiskey cocktails, Vietnamese fare;

–           Humphry Slocombe: fun, strange ice cream flavors

–           Fort Point Beer Company: local beer

Experience San Francisco at night
The nightlife in San Francisco is indescribable

This kind of organization is especially useful for tourists that visit San Francisco. It allows them to see the best of San Francisco by preparing ahead of time. See the best sights, get some quality wine and dine in there, and include other activities you wouldn’t normally have time for.

Meet the locals

Wherever you’re staying, one fact rings true: the locals know the place best. This applies whether you’re a tourist or you’ve recently moved to SF. People that have been living there their whole lives tend to know exactly where to go to get the authentic experience. That’s why you should try to make a few “native“ friends while there that can show you cool things to do in San Francisco.

Not only that, but the locals can teach you how to save money while in the city (though not every local is that way). San Francisco isn’t exactly the cheapest of cities, and your cash can quickly fizzle out if you aren’t careful.

Since SF is such a tourist hotspot, the locals there are quite used to new people from other places. That makes them very friendly in general, so don’t worry about annoying them with your attempts to make a connection. And even if they do get peeved, there are tons of people in SF, so you’ll find someone else to show you the best ways to see San Francisco.

Wrapup

San Francisco is a big slice of wonder – much more than anyone can handle at once. Luckily, this guide will let you take out one strategic bite at a time. And that’s one of the best ways to experience San Francisco. Savor it like the splendid treat that it is.

Is Your Credit Card Travel Insurance Coverage Enough?

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Content provided by TuGo

Is Your Credit Card Travel Insurance Coverage Enough?
Photo by Cameron Casey on Pexels.com

Still relying on credit card travel insurance? Not sure if it really fits the bill? Read on to determine if your coverage is enough…

1. Coverage clauses

• Do you have to pay for the whole trip with your credit card to be covered? Is
there a minimum amount?
• What’s the maximum number of days covered for one trip?
• What’s the maximum amount you’re covered for?
• Are you covered for high-risk activities, like scuba diving?
• Are you covered for other professional services like physio, chiro, etc. to relieve
an acute emergency?

2. Family coverage

• Is coverage only for you, the cardholder?
• Will your travel companions get the same coverage as you, or do they need to
buy additional insurance?
• Would coverage be available to return your travelling companion,
children/grandchildren or accompanying pet home, in a medical emergency?

3. Pre-existing medical conditions

• Does your age affect coverage?
• Are you covered for pre-existing medical conditions?

4. Trip cancellations or interruptions

• Does the plan offer trip cancellation or trip interruption insurance?
• Do you have to pay for the whole trip with your credit card to be covered? Is
there a minimum amount?
• What’s the maximum amount you’re covered for?

5. Emergency and claim assistance

• Are you covered for ambulance or emergency air transportation?
• Will you be penalized if you don’t call the claims company after the emergency or
before visiting the hospital?

So remember, while you may have travel coverage through your credit card, it might not cover you completely in a medical emergency situation. Make sure to contact your credit card provider to know what your policy really covers. If it’s not enough, check out how TuGo can help meet your travel insurance needs.

Is Your Credit Card Travel Insurance Coverage Enough?
Photo by Julius Silver on Pexels.com

Prepare Yourself for Cycling Around-the-World

cycling around the world

Everyone has a dream or two involving something exciting and adventurous. If, for example, you wish to cycle the world, there’s really no reason whatsoever to stop you. You just have to decide whether you want it hard enough because, in all honesty, around-the-world cycling does require some strong dedication and thorough preparation. But, if you’re set on achieving this wonderful and inspiring goal, make sure you know your steps.

Proper research

Before anything else, it’s essential that you do your research, especially when it comes to the main and alternative routes you’re going to take. Aside from that, it’s paramount that you’re knowledgeable about the laws and regulations of countries you’re going to cycle through. Apart from that, it would be extremely useful to know what your options are in terms of accommodation, even if it’s just camping in the open.

cycling training

Train your body

Cycling is not easy, and especially not when you’re about to cycle the globe. In that respect, it’s essential that you prepare your body. Create a workout routine so that you can build muscle and fitness necessary for such an enterprise. Of course, it’s important that you cycle regularly as a part of your workout routine.

Know what you need

The most important piece of equipment on this journey is obviously your bike. Everything else can be dealt with one way or the other. Without question, electric Bosch eBike is your best choice and smartest investment that will ensure security in almost every part of the world. Of course, you’ll need a tent, a portable stove and some durable waterproof clothes, but you can find all that at affordable prices and even at thrift shops.

cycling in winter

The issue of money

When finances are concerned, things can get a bit tricky, but you also have various options, depending on what you want to do with your life. If you generally plan a huge change that involves a complete transformation once you return from the cycling adventure, you may find it easy to sell everything you own and make extra cash with your own skills wherever you find yourself. On the other hand, you may feel more comfortable with gradually saving up the money so that you feel more secure. The latter also means that you’ll have to plan ahead and wait a while.

Find your purpose

There are many reasons why people decide to do something as amazing and mind-blowing as cycling around the world. If you have a personal cause you can share it with the world. In the end, you may even manage to break the world’s record. This may not be something you’re into, but remember that even Forrest Gump attracted huge media coverage when he started running. The important thing here is that you know 100% in your heart the cause that drives you to cycle. That way you can decide whether to share it with everybody else or not.

cycle into the sunset

End date and milestones

It would be extremely helpful to set an end date in your mind that would give you an idea of how far and long you need to cycle from day to day. Of course, don’t just focus on the end date because this date is changeable. Instead, focus on milestones that you can set for yourself. For instance, a good way to create milestones is to take your current location into account, be that a city, a county or a whole country/state.

In order to cycle around the world, you actually need to start pedaling, and begin your journey from somewhere. The whole adventure is already complex and it will take you a few years to accomplish, so, if this is something you strongly wish for, don’t make it even more complicated.

cycle in the evening

Travel Product Review – The Slicks Flexible Travel System

Carry-On Made Easy

Travel inspires and helps us to understand people and other cultures. Travel takes us to faraway places; to simply visit relatives; to see the world. For as long as we’ve traveled, there has been our extra travel companion, like it or not, called “luggage”. Starting back with a “travel chest” (on a steamship and/or stage coach); then onto extra large suitcases and to where we are now (crazy for carry-on). If you have elite status with your favorite airline, chances are you have “free” first bag or 2, priority baggage (first on the baggage carousel when you land) along with priority check-in. If you don’t have elite status or you are on a shorter trip, chances are you prefer carry-on.

While it’s great to travel, and to look forward to travelling, the worst part (at least for me) is packing. I dread packing. But I’ve just come across the answer to my packing prayers- The Slicks Flexible Travel System. It has it all. It’s a backpack and briefcase combined into a carry-on.

Slicks Bag as a briefcase

I’ve got the Slicks Biz Bundle. It combines backpack, trip cover, wash bag and suitcover in one. It’s the Swiss Army knife of luggage!

The Slicks Pack is super sturdy and can be a back pack or a briefcase (store the back straps in the pack and use the side handles). The back pack on its own is perfect for trips to and from the office or campus.

The Trip cover is the wardrobe bag that attaches inside the Pack and has a place for the wash bag, laundry bag (included) and room for underwear, socks, shirts, etc. It also includes a shirt cover to keep shirts folded and not wrinkled.

The suit cover can fold 4 times to keep your suit or nice outfit wrinkle free and attaches inside the Pack as well.

Here’s the best way to see what I’m talking about – Click Here for the full Slicks visual tour!

Slicks bag fitting together
Slicks bag as a backpack

This modular backpack/suitcase has a place for everything and everything in its place. It will keep you away from the baggage carousel (worth the price alone) and keep you well organized. With all of its components and accessories, it provides great value. It’s carry-on heaven!

PROS

  • Looks great, well designed
  • Carry On
  • Perfect for a weekend away or 3-day trip

CONS

  • Not enough room for a weeklong trip or more than 3 days
  • Not ideal for checked baggage (but not what it’s meant for either)

All in all, a great piece of luggage and I highly recommend it. If you are interested in getting Slicks luggage, go to the Slicks website for more information and to order direct. And here’s my Promotion Code that will save you 10% at checkout – MarkTravelSlicks (valid until April 30, 2018).

Safe Travels!

Mark

5 Benefits of Adventure Travel for Your Physical and Mental Health

There are many ways one can improve their lifestyle. From different approach to life to engaging in different hobbies, it’s important that you find something personal that will fulfill and make you happy. For starters, spending time in nature is known to be a great way to relieve stress and boost mindfulness. This is precisely why adventure travel may as well be the perfect option for those of you that are still seeking for that much-needed lifestyle betterment. If this sounds interesting, check out the following adventure travel benefits that can completely transform your life.

1. A stronger immune system

There have been plenty of studies in regards to the benefits of getting dirty outdoors for kids. However, the truth is that getting dirty a bit is also beneficial for the adults. Of course, it’s only natural that you want to keep yourself clean. But, allowing your body to experience a bit of dirt from nature on occasion can boost your immune system and reduce the risk of allergies and asthma.

2. Nature as a remedy

Obviously, you don’t always have to engage in activities that will result in you getting dirty. Walking and light jogging as a part of spending time outdoors are also great activities and a big part of adventure travel for beginners as well. What’s more, these nature-based activities are often recommended to people that have health issues such as heart disease, obesity, attention deficit disorder, and so on.

3. Sharp mentality and better memory

You may be wondering what do outdoor activities have to do with brain and memory boost. Well, hiking, walking, jogging and/or cycling while surrounded by nature can actually boost the hippocampus growth, which is directly linked to the sharper senses and improved memory. Luckily, there’s no age limit to your personal kind of adventure travel, so don’t waste any opportunity to discover the joy and benefits of it all.

4. Become more resourceful

It’s true that adventure travels are usually filled with uncertainty. However, that uncertainty doesn’t have to be bad. Focusing too much on making everything work according to plan is only going to drain you, and make you more stressed and angry when it doesn’t. And, let’s face it, things don’t usually go according to plan, and especially not when the plan is overly strict or when nature is concerned. This is a great opportunity to let go of the plan-making habit for every little thing in life, and enjoy the flow. Not to mention that these situations are perfect for letting your imaginative and quick-witted side shine through. Allow that resourcefulness to become a part of your daily life as well.

5. Dream and succeed

Spending time in nature on your adventure may seem like a big step now, but once you experience it yourself, it will quickly grow on you. It’s the healthiest addiction you can possibly have. If you’ve been enjoying a bike ride to the park so far, you may even find that a cycling tour is what you need for your next travel. Of course, just make sure that you have a good bicycle, enhanced with Rockshox high-performance products. One of the biggest benefits of making adventure travel a part of your life like this is the ability to visualize your dream, as well as the steps you need to take in order to achieve it. Natural scenery can seriously help you reflect upon your own wishes, powers, and personal goals.

Your adventure travel is not limited by the amount of true wilderness in your immediate surroundings or your stamina to hike or ride a bike. The will to explore your own self is more than enough of a motivator when it comes to embarking on your perfectly personal adventure travel. Therefore, go outdoors to come back with more confidence, fresh knowledge and discoveries, stronger dreams and a happier self.