Welcome to the Neighborhood, A Series About San Francisco Neighborhoods
For this installment of the “Welcome to the Neighborhood” series, we’re heading North over the Golden Gate Bridge to one of the Bay Area’s most popular towns – Sausalito. As we pointed out in our post about Mill Valley, the towns of Marin are not technically San Francisco neighborhoods, but we believe the bridge is just a mental barrier that once overcome, opens up another neighborhood – and world – for visitors and locals alike.
While we love the grand sights, we love the unexpected, off-the-beaten path destinations even more. It is in those places and moments where travelers have their best, real, personal experiences. It is with that spirit that we share with you some of our favorite places to visit in Sausalito:
Explore Sausalito -the hills and stairways
After you walk along Bridgeway – the main street in town – to look at the amazing views of San Francisco, turn back towards the little downtown area and look for Excelsior Lane. It’s a stairway that leads off of Bridgeway and heads up into the hills of Sausalito. This is one of many stairways throughout the hills of town (in the past, some of these led to speakeasies and brothels), and all offer a glimpse into the beautiful gardens, homes and vistas that lucky Sausalitians enjoy. Wandering aimlessly is the way to go; mix it up by walking a few flat blocks before ascending another staircase. Wind your way down with a different route and eventually you will end up back on Bridgeway.
There are eleven Marinas and yacht clubs in Sausalito and one of our favorites to wander around in is the Sausalito Yacht Harbor. Just off the beaten path, at the northern end of Bridgeway, you can walk amongst the sailboats, appreciate the views of Mt. Tam, and keep your eyes peeled for sea lions at play.
Heath Ceramics is having its moment amongst design lovers, even though the company has been producing mid-century style tabletop, homeware, tiles and the like since 1948. The company has recently opened stores in the Ferry Building in San Francisco and also in LA, but nothing beats going to the mothership, where their entire line is available (including factory seconds!). They offer tours of the factory on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. We love connecting with the makers and artists of the Bay Area, and this is one of our fave spots in which to do so.
Eat & Drink in Sausalito
With all the emphasis on water and boating in Sausalito it makes sense that one of the best fish restaurants in the Bay Area is in this town. It is called quite simply, Fish. Their focus is on serving sustainable fish in a casual atmosphere (order at the counter and they bring it to your picnic table). But don’t let the casual vibe of the place fool you – they serve seriously good food. We love the ceviche, the clam dip and anything they’re grilling fresh that day. Lots of options for kids and non-fishy types too.
Taste of Rome
If you want a super casual (i.e. we’ve seen locals hanging out here in their pajamas!) very Sausalito place to hang out, Taste of Rome is your spot. In the course of an hour, you’ll see a good cross-section of town stop in for very strong coffee, pizzas, desserts and wine. Lots of people bring their dogs and grab one of the outdoor tables to soak up the sun and watch the packs of bicyclists whiz past.
Perfect Sausalito Itinerary
Our perfect itinerary for a day in Sausalito would go in this order: wander around the hills and stairs, pop into Heath before having lunch at Fish, explore the Sausalito Yacht Harbor, which is right next to Taste of Rome where you can end with coffee or wine and one of their delicious desserts. What a lovely way to spend four or five hours!
All photos are from the company’s website or Facebook page.
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