Telegraph Hill: Hike Up or Scramble Down?

Antonette Loresca

Telegraph Hill: Hike Up or Scramble Down?

Telegraph Hill is a neighborhood in one of the 44 hills of San Francisco, California. It is named after a semaphore which was once erected here. A peaceful and quiet residential area but it became a destination for tourists, poets and artists because of its tower, gardens and wild parrots. There are different ways how to go, spend and enjoy the hill, choose which way you want it.

Work it Up...

Ride the historic streetcar to take you at the Embarcadero and Greenwich stop and start the tour with the following must see places along the path:

Levi Plaza - the new red brick buildings, headquarters of the original maker of denim jeans. It's a mini plaza make you feel like a well-worn pair of blue jeans, easy-going and relaxed atmosphere.

Napier Lane - wooden plank sidewalk along the steeply stairway street of Filbert, leading you to private gardens and small houses built since 1870's where you will find the famous wild parrots.

Julius Castle - view of a '20's restaurant at Montgomery Street - unfortunately can't experience a royal dinner since it is already closed.

Coit Tower - or Lillian Coit Memorial tower, built in 1933 of unpainted concrete, artistically decorated with different murals and paintings. After that walk up, you'll be glad with the elevator ride to get to the top of this 210-foot tower and enjoy the breath taking landscape of the entire city of San Francisco.

Caffe Trieste - an international landmark in San Francisco's North Beach in Vallejo St. (Right side of Kearny St.), not only served the finest Espresso coffee, it has also hosted poets, writers, composers and artists for over 500 years.

St. Francis of Assisi Church - a quiet, tranquil and peaceful shrine in the very heart of very urban and populated city of San Francisco, corner of Vallejo St. and Columbus Ave.

Molinari Delicatessen - a must stop-by for famish tourists after the climbing and walking around the hill, grab an Italian sandwiches, delis, and superb meat; across Columbus Ave.

The Saloon - the oldest tavern in San Francisco established in 1861 and probably the world's greatest blues bar, as they say. Live good music played every night, recorded and released CD available for sale in the bar itself. Located on Grant Avenue (between Columbus and Vallejo).

City Lights Bookstore - along Columbus Avenue, is an independent bookstore and publication founded in 1953 specializes in world literature, the arts and progressive politics. This is where you can find Beats' legacy, insurgent thinking and ambiance of alternative culture.

Vesuvio's - just across the City Lights Bookstore, a world renowned San Francisco saloon and an historical monument to Beat Generations established in 1948. Now it's time to lay back and enjoy your drinks along with other patrons from all walks of life.

If hiking up is too much work-out for you, then start at Coit Tower via Lombard Street. Parking is difficult so it is better to take a short bus ride from the Fisherman's Wharf area or from Washington Square in North Beach. Then take the stairs down along the Filbert St. exact opposite route mentioned above from Coit Tower, Julius Castle, Napier Lane to Levi Plaza. However which way, have fun!

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