When trying to decide where we wanted to spend our honeymoon California made the list, but we weren’t sold at first. We contemplated all kinds of places and things to do. We knew we didn’t want to go to the Caribbean since September is still hurricane season and wow are we glad we thought of that after this year’s weather!!! So, when it all came down to it, we decided on California. Neither Matt or myself had ever been there! We were excited to plan an on-the-go type trip with a little bit of beach and a whole lot of activities planned. Once we decided on San Francisco and LA, I pretty much left Matt out of the planning so a lot of it was a surprise to him!!
Here is the start of our honeymoon recap – including 3 full days spent in the San Francisco area…
Day 1 – Travel day
Our flight was delayed in O’Hare (imagine that) so we didn’t land in San Francisco until 8pm and by the time we got our bags, rental car, and made it to our Airbnb it was almost 10. Which meant it really felt like midnight to us with the time difference. So we stayed in the first night and hit the hay to rest up for the next full day of exploring!!
I definitely recommend staying in an AirBnB, there are so many to choose from!! A lot of the homes have apartments on the bottom level so they rent them out for very reasonable rates. Ours was located in the Marina, only a block from the bay and a really close uber ride to most sites!!
Day 2 – San Francisco
We started our first full day with a trip out to Alcatraz Island. We booked the first tour of the day at 8:45am and I am so glad we did!! For future reference, it gets super busy on the island later in the morning and afternoon because once you get out there you don’t have a specific ferry to take back, you can stay as long as you want and catch a ferry once you’re ready to leave. The lines were 3 times as long when we were leaving as they were when we arrived!! Overall, we LOVED Alcatraz. It was very cool and the audio tour was very fun and interesting (unlike most audio tours haha). You also get AMAZING views of the city and Golden Gate Bridge from out there!!! We only spent an hour or so on the island then headed back to the city to explore more.
We walked around Pier 39 for awhile. It is great for souvenir shopping, grabbing ice cream, or food. The pier also has great views of the bay and the seals sunbathing!! We got lunch at a really cute Mexican restaurant and sat outside next to the water.
After lunch, we walked through the Fisherman’s Warf and made our way to Lombard Street (aka: the crooked street). I recommend taking a cable car or uber to Lombard Street, from personal experience, the walk is straight up hill for about 4 blocks. It was rough, but once we realized we were only 3 blocks away we just pep talked ourselves the rest of the way lol!! When we arrived the views of the city were amazing!
We did a little happy hour crawl on Union Street and ended up having a blast!! And then our happy hour ended up lasting all night:) One of our favorite restaurants was the Palm House. It had really cool coastal vibes with amazing food and tropical cocktails!! We looooved the Mac & Cheese and these Palm House Slushies!!!
Day 3 – Napa Valley
This was one of my favorite days on the whole honeymoon!! We took a Napa Valley bus tour from San Fran to Napa that was all inclusive! Definitely the best way to see Napa if you only have a day! We toured 4 different wineries and tasted wines at 3 of them. It was so much fun and the valley was so beautiful!!! Our little bus was full of people from all over the world, celebrating all kinds of things, it was awesome meeting all of them!!
When leaving the city, we drove over the Golden Gate Bridge and stopped for some pictures. Unfortunately it was very foggy that morning.
The Robert Mondavi Winery was simply beautiful! The moscato was our favorite!!
Andretti Winery was like we stepped out of our little bus and into a Tuscan escape!! We had lunch outside by the vineyards and it was both delicious and quaint!!
Our last stop was the Franciscan Estate where we were able to taste the grapes right off the vine! They were in the midst of harvest.
Day 4 – San Francisco
We started out our last day in San Fran with a really delicious brunch at Eight AM. We explored a little and walked along the bay before our hike in the afternoon. We registered for some excursions on our wedding registry and this Urban Hiker Hike was one of them. It was a 3 hour guided hike, starting in the city and taking us up to three different peaks and through a eucalyptus forest. We had a blast and were able to see some of the most beautiful 360 degree views of the city!!!
After the hike, we went back and freshened up and went to dinner in Sausalito! A quaint, cute town across the Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco. We ate at Bar Bocce, a really adorable outdoor dining restaurant right on the water!! Definitely recommend, it had such a fun, relaxing atmosphere!!!
Day 5 – Start Drive Down the Coast
Our second destination was Los Angeles and instead of spending the whole day driving from San Fran to LA, we decided to split it up over two days. We were able to stop in Monterey to walk along the water and have lunch in Carmel by the Sea. These two places were beautiful!!! Wish we would’ve had more time to explore (next time!!!).
Carmel by the Sea was quaint and adorable, I loved it!! Lots of shopping and restaurants!
We spent the night at The Cliff’s Resort in Pismo Beach. Our room had stunning views and we spent the evening on the restaurant patio watching the sunset – so relaxing!!!
It was just amazing staying right on the water!! We loved the Cliff’s and would definitely stay there again!!
The next morning we woke up and drove the rest of the way to LA for the second half of our honeymoon!! I’ll stop there though:) LA travel recap and details coming soon!! Overall, we loved San Francisco and Napa!!! So beautiful and SO much to do! I felt like we could’ve spent the whole trip here and still had more to see. I guess we will just have to go back!!!
Thanks for stopping by!!!