Popular with visitors from all around the world, San Francisco has many excellent attractions. Visit the Coit Tower, located on Telegraph Hill in the eastern part of the city, for incredible views of the city and harbour. A short drive from Telegraph Hill is the famous area known as Fisherman's Wharf. Here you can ride up the steep hills on historic cable cars, visit several museums, and see the resident sea lions at Pier 39. At Fisherman's Wharf, you can also catch a ferry across to the famous island of Alcatraz, once home to military fortifications, and the notorious Alcatraz prison. Providing access from San Francisco to the north is the world-famous Golden Gate Bridge, an engineering masterpiece and icon of the city. A drive across the bridge is a must for anyone fortunate enough to be travelling in the area with a car.
Outside of San Francisco, visit the highly acclaimed wine regions of Napa Valley and Sonoma or spend a day in the charming towns of Santa Clara or Berkley. Additionally, check out Oakland in San Francisco's East Bay. While considered part of the greater San Francisco area, Oakland is a city with a character all its own.
Parking rates in San Francisco vary from $2.00 to $3.50 per hour. The hours of operation are displayed on the meters but most of the meters in San Francisco have a two-hour limit. Meters are being updated around the city and all new meters accept credit cards, though it may be wise to carry quarters ($0.25 coins) for older meters. The local council is allowed to tow a vehicle that has been parked in the same spot for over 72 hours. Parking spots may be colour coded as follows:
If you're travelling outside of the city, you are likely to encounter toll roads. Tolls in the U.S. can vary greatly, from less than $1 to upwards of $10. If possible, research your route beforehand and carry cash. Change is usually available through tellers at toll booths. Occasionally, you will need coins in various denominations for unmanned booths.
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