Memorial Day in San Francisco

San Francisco is a beautiful city and all the more so basked in sunshine, as it was on Memorial Day. Its hilly landscape is very reminiscent of Wellington, our New Zealand home (all be it on a much larger scale!). There was a welcome familiarity to driving up and down roads at 45 degree angles.The cable cars reminded us of the trolley buses that negotiate Wellington’s hilly terrain. The sweeping vistas of bays reaching down to the sea reminded us of the bays that we call home in Wellington.

We took the girls on a drive up Hyde Street and down the well known, and tourist frequented, Lombard Street, recounting stories from the Herbie movie and how we’d walked down Lombard Street when Miss 4 was but a babe, Miss 10 was 4; and our current Miss 4 was just a thought in our minds. There’s an old blog post of our visit – back in 2007 – over on our ‘Catching the Magic‘ blog.

Hilly streets of San Francisco

Our plan for the day was a visit to the incredible California Academy of Sciences, set in the beautiful Golden Gate Park.

California Academy of Sciences

This is a spectacular place to visit. The building itself is a work of art and science, with amazing natural lighting and a ‘living roof’!

Our visit was one of awe from beginning to end, with something to fascinate all of us.

Inside the California Academy of Sciences

The spectacular aquarium had our youngest daughter moving from one exhibition to the next with a running dialogue of exclamation.


We all delighted in seeing a New Zealand ‘Kiwi’, alongside other large-egg laying birds and under a huge skeleton of a blue whale.

Exhibition at the California Academy of Sciences

The collection of skulls was quite something and the earthquake simulator, and history of San Francisco’s shaky past, again reminded us of our Wellington home.

The white alligator left us mesmerised with its statuesque presence and the natural magnificence of the ‘Rainforests of the World’ exhibit in a 90-foot diameter glass dome had to be experienced.

White alligator

The visit was definitely well worth it!

We left the museum late afternoon, and took a drive over the Golden Gate Bridge for a scenic view back over the city of San Francisco.

Golden Gate Bridge

A great way to end a lovely day together.