Lombard Street, San Francisco

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You’ll pass Lombard Street, the “Crookedest Street In The World”, on the Powell-Hyde Cable Car route, but it’s certainly worth more than a passing glance.  Traffic creeps down the steep, twisted slope, as an endless supply of tourists huff and puff their way up the sidewalks on either side.  (I’m being generous calling them sidewalks, they’re more like a block-long flight of stairs.)

After driving down the crooked section of Lombard Street, keep going one more block.  There, you’ll find plenty of free parking on both sides of the street.

Chances are, I will never be able to afford even the smallest apartment along this high-rent road.  But those who can afford to live here, must also spend a generous amount of money beautifying their front yards.  Shrubs are perfectly trimmed, and colorful flowers are always blooming.

Lombard Street provides a great view of Telegraph Hill, Coit Tower, the bay, and the Bay Bridge.  It’s also one of the few roads that doesn’t have power poles or streetcar lines obstructing your  view.

Just try to take a single picture of Lombard Street that doesn’t  have a car or a tourist in it… I dare you!

Try not to stand in the road, or in the driveways of people who live here.  Of course, I’m sure the locals are used to tourists being in the way.

Once you’re done here, you’ll need to take another street back up and over the hill, and eventually get back on Lombard Street, heading West.  Lombard quickly changes from a curvy, one lane, one way road, to a busy, 6 lane road (US 101). Follow 101 to our next stop, the Golden Gate Bridge.

Note: This trip was first published in 2004.

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