Hi guys!! I know this is so overdue and I am sorry!! We took so many photos in California a few months ago that even the thought of editing them all was so overwhelming. Lol. But I did it!! And I’ve separated them into each city or town that we stayed in! I will be releasing each one over the coming weeks! As some of you know, we had booked a trip to Hawaii scheduled for January, but something came up with Justin’s work and we had to postpone the trip until October. We were so bummed, so we decided to book a last minute trip to California for Christmas. We started off in San Fransisco and then headed to Napa Valley, and then headed down the coast to Los Angeles.
It was a pretty magical time to be in San Fransisco during the holidays. We stayed at the Ritz Carleton San Fransisco for Christmas Eve and Christmas night, it was absolutely stunning. This hotel is so centrally located and has an absolutely breathtaking interior and exterior. The staff treated us like royalty and staying at the Ritz just might have been the highlight of visiting San Fransisco. Hahaha. It was seriously that amazing. We had spent Christmas eve at the hotel bar and laughed all night over fancy cocktails and wine. We had room service for Christmas morning, and I honestly think I could have stayed there forever. Lol. It was such a romantic and memorable way to spend Christmas <3
It was a weird thing seeing palm trees instead of snow on Christmas lol. You can definitely tell that we take Christmas much more serious in Canada hahaha. But the city really was decorated beautifully at every corner. We had wished we booked a time for skating at Union Square, so if you are going to San Fransisco next winter, make sure you book this ahead of time!! We wished we had!
The Golden Gate Bridge was pretty surreal to see in real life. It totally feels like you’re living in the scene from a movie. We also headed down to Pier 39 & Fishermans Wharf and had the most delicious mini donuts that I’ve ever tasted. We loved them so much that we went back again the next day to get more. Lol. Exploring San Fransisco was really cool, and the street cars are very helpful for avoiding some of the monstrous hills in the city LOL. Another thing we wished we would have booked ahead of time was Alcatraz!! As true crime addicts, we were so bummed that everything was sold out.
It was definitely not warm most of our time in San Fran, so if you are planning a trip in the winter months, pack warm clothes!! A few times I had honestly wished I packed my parka hahaha. So many people were decked out in hats and mittens, which I thought was a little bit extreme hahaha but for people from California, this was like our -30. Lol But I did wear my fur coat basically the entire time. I was so happy I packed it, because I almost didn’t! Lol.
We had sort of wished we had a car in San Fran, as a few of the spots we wanted to check out were pretty spread out and too far to walk. We took Uber a lot, but it’s nice having the freedom of your own car! -Which brings me to my next point. In one of last year’s blog posts I had recommended Hertz if you were looking for rental cars because we loved how they provided a GPS that we could take with us and pay a flat rate to have a hotspot to our phones. (which was amazing) So, this year we booked with Hertz again, only to have the complete opposite experience. We had booked our car weeks in advance to leave San Fransisco and head to Napa in the morning to spend the day in Napa and go on wine tours etc. When we arrived at Hertz there was a line out the door of angry customers that were SO frustrated with Hertz. Hertz had WAY more bookings than they had available cars. I’m talking 30+ people waiting for cars that they did not have. It was absolutely mind blowing. The original car we booked, they told us it wasn’t there, or coming, and that for any car would be a 4+ hour wait. We looked them up online and turns out this happens ALL the time with Hertz in San Fransisco. The location on Bryant was the one we specifically experienced, but after doing research (after the fact) it looks like the are all pretty terrible. you can read all the reviews we wish we read about it here. I would HATE if any of you had to experience this like we did. We lost our entire day in Napa, and we were so sad. By the time we arrived it was getting dark and all the wineries were closing. Booooo.
Overall I liked San Fransisco, but love love LOVED heading down the coast and I think LA will always be my favourite! More to come on that! If I forgot anything or if you want any more information let me know in the comments and I will try my best to answer!