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Unread 20 Oct 18, 06:11 PM  
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bambikate
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The 1200 Mile West Coast Adventure - August/September 2018: Day 6: Adventurecats are go!

Day 6: Adventurecats are go!
Saturday 25 August 2018

Catamaran tour of Alcatraz and Golden Gate Bridge, Walt Disney Family Museum and Ghirardelli

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Everyone woke up really excited today. We had a catamaran tour booked with Adventurecat sailing charters at 11am. Originally we had planned on going to Alcatraz island when we were planning but when I finally got round to booking it (after all my exams) it had sold out! I hadnt even realised this was a thing! Doh!

In retrospect, Im glad it turned out the way it did. I feel as though our catamaran tour was one of the most special things we have ever done, we will never forget it and Im not sure a tour around Alcatraz would have been the same.

We had a bit of spare time before our reservation and first on the agenda - breakfast!

We thought wed give the Starbucks directly behind the hotel a try. It was lovely inside and lots of seating space. We got a blueberry muffin, 2 croissant breakfast rolls and a granola and some drinks/ It went down a treat and seemed pretty reasonable for SF.









Next we strolled back to the candy store from the night before for a proper browse and to buy some pick n' mix,





This was quite a scary sign!



Serious business





We carefully selected the best candy in our bag (btw these giant tubs of candy were not fixed to the tables, they were just placed on them! Every time the girls knocked them I was having serious anxiety that the whole tub would be knocked on the floor!





Candy in hand, we strolled for a mooch around Boudin bakery, where we were having lunch. It was fascinating watching the bakers make the little shaped breads and seeing all the beautiful loaves already baked we were so except to be coming back later.







We still had lots of time until departure so went into Pier 39 for another browse.

Imogen's photography









We found a Christmas shop that was great for a browse, more expensive than Disney decorations though so we didnt buy any but they were fun to look at!

I loved these Mermen of the December Diamonds Christmas Ornaments. Possibly the campest ornaments I've ever seen!







We also looked around Build-a-Bear, the girls had always wanted one but we had never got round to getting one made. We said we would come back later on



Freaky mannequin in the gift shop





It was about half an hour before our reservation so we waited at the dock and ate our candy from earlier.



Chocolate covered gummy bears



Octopus



About 15 minutes before, one of the crew came round with his iPad to check us all in. There was around 20 of us altogether, which was amazing as we had seen the boats crammed with people going out for tours all day.







We were soon boarded and they began our safety briefing. People spread out all over the boat and we chose the port hull and were warned we may get slightly wet!























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Edited at 06:35 PM.
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Unread 20 Oct 18, 06:12 PM  
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We wore layers as we knew it would be chilly on the bay but we still werent totally prepared for quite how cold it would be. We set off and were totally in awe of the beautiful views. They were offering free jackets so Izzy went in to collect one for her and her sister

We went right up close to Alcatraz island and right underneath the Golden Gate Bridge which was so surreal and brilliant.

One of the crew kindly offered to take some family photos . She was amazing and was getting in all sorts of positions to capture the best shots.


































As we made our way back towards the city she asked the girls if they would like to drive the boat. The girls said yes, please! and followed her round to where the captain was. He directed them up to helm of the boat and the captain started giving them some instructions. After a few minutes Izzy was steering the boat!



















She was doing a stellar job and the lovely lady crew member offered to climb on top of the boat and take some pictures of her. She was lying on her stomach to get some great shots. She really went above and beyond. They all did.

Next was Imogen who also did really well and absolutely loved it. It was such a special thing to happen we couldnt believe our luck!





















There was one more little boy on board who had a go next as we went back round to the bow of the boat.

Imogen and Izzy were so brave walking over the netting, I was far more apprehensive. Imogen would lie on it and run across it no fear at all!

We both said to each other it was the best things we had ever done.









The lady offered the girls to help her with the sails. They helped with the ropes and were thrilled to be helping out again.







We eventually docked and handed the jackets back and tipped the crew for being so fantastic.



We were starving by this point and were very glad to have a reservation for lunch a couple of minutes walk away.

Our lunch reservation was Bistro Boudin. I made a small mistake here I didnt realise the downstairs was quick service and therefore reasonably priced and upstairs was the table service pretty much double the price restaurant

We had booked upstairs and when we got there the menu was totally different to the one I was looking at online. It didn't have the chilli with fish shaped bread for the kids It was also way more than wed budgeted.



I was tempted to leave but I felt really stupid and Andy said it sounded nice so we just stayed.
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Edited at 06:19 PM.
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Unread 20 Oct 18, 06:12 PM  
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We got 4 waters and the girls ordered a pizza for $10.95 each, Andy ordered a sourdough baguette burger - full half-pound beef patty, toasted sourdough baguette, lettuce, tomato, onions and french fries for $17.95, I got a clam chowder sourdough bread bowl for $16.95.

We were brought some sourdough bread and butter to start while we waited.







We had a great view



Pizza!



To be fair the food was really good and I was so happy to be having clam chowder in SF!





At the end of the meal I took the girls to the loo, there was a queue of about 15 women so it took ages. In the meantime, Andy paid and asked for the pizza to be boxed up to take home as Imogen had about half left still.

By the time we were done, Andy was waiting by the top of the stairs for us without a pizza box. He said that when he went to pay the manager came over and said that someone accidentally threw the pizza in the bin! He was very apologetic and took the entire pizza off the bill, which was a nice gesture but it didnt stop Imogen feeling (understandably) upset about it!

It was time to explore a little further afield and collect our car from the valet, this was easy and our car was brought around within a few minutes. We plugged in the sat nav coordinates for The Walt Disney Family Museum!



We had booked this months ago and we were very excited to be going. The drive was easy and we were there in about 15 minutes. The Presido was such a lovely area!





We managed to park on the on-street parking and used change, it was only about $4, which was a bargain.

We went inside and got to go straight through to the museum as we had bought our tickets online and printed them at home.

The museum was so well done and really interesting. There were lots of interactive exhibits and it was lovely hearing and seeing all about the history.

Baby Walt!





































True dat



Slightly foggy but great view!



















This was really sad







We all really enjoyed visiting.

We also loved the gift shop

I want it all!



Great impression!







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Unread 20 Oct 18, 06:13 PM  
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Next, we drove over the Golden Gate Bridge over to Sausalito. The girls were so excited! It was very overcast and misty over the bridge.









As we drove through the mountains you could see the low cloud, it looked so eerie.

It was so bizarre because as soon as we got into Sausalito itself, it was glorious sunshine and absolutely beautiful!









We loved the look of Sausalito, we had a good explore and decided this would be the perfect place to live

On the way back the fog started appearing again, it looked amazing. The traffic was pretty bad going over the bridge as there had been an accident.







The toll is paid for automatically so when our number plate was scanned it debited my FasTrack account - very clever! It set us back $8.

Next, we drove to Baker Beach for another view of the Golden Gate Bridge and a nice little walk. We were pleased to discover that the parking was free.













It was so windy and freezing cold! We didnt stay for too long. but it was very pretty and there were some great views.

Heading back



Next, we took a short drive to visit the Mrs Doubtfire house and the Painted Ladies. Oh my goodness this area was just amazing. The stuff that dreams are made of, just need a spare $4/5m



The painted ladies were very pretty



My fave


On the way back to the hotel we drove down Lombard Street, which was fun!







We handed the car to the valet and walked down to Pier 39. We had planned on having Codmother fish and chips on the way which was a couple of minute walk away from the hotel. We got there and it was in this little gated food truck area. We opened the gate and the guy said sorry guys, were closed! We did the typical British oh, sorry and shuffled out.

What? A food place that closes at 6pm on a Saturday? I googled it and sure enough, their opening hours were there clear as day. I didnt even think to check! So much for planning Kate We briefly contemplated another In-N-Out burger but thought wed better expand our horizons...

We managed to find another fish and chips stall at Fisherman's Wharf. They weren't great and came with curly fries straight from the freezer but perhaps as we live in a UK seaside town I think we are probably a little spoilt on the fish and chip front!





We said hello to velvet and the other sea lions again then had a look around Pier 39, they had blankets and cushions set up ready for an outdoor movie, which was cute.

We went for a look around build a bear. We had budgeted spare spending money each day but hadnt really done much shopping yet so it had built up a little bit and we felt like surprising the girls.

Once inside we told them they could make their own bear and they jumped for joy! They spent AGES choosing their Bear and accessories and scents and the lady who stuffed the bear was so sweet and the girls loved her because she had such a cute voice









Her face!









Aww







It was a fab experience but my goodness it was expensive, Im not sure if it was just because of the exchange rate but ouch. That hurt.

Our final plan was a walk to Ghirardelli Square for a sundae before bed. We walked over the the Square, which was just past out hotel and perused the menu.



We settled for The Ocean Beach Sundae, one of their specials which was sea salt caramel sundae with hot fudge and sea salt caramel.

We got one to share, which was enough. It surpassed all our expectations. It was absolutely gorgeous! Humphry Slocombe was the best on-its-own ice cream but you cant argue with hot fudge and caramel sauce on top. Good lord.







We walked round the square, which was so pretty at night then back to our room. The sundae was still going strong at this point, it was huge!

It was time to move hotels tomorrow but we decided to pack in the morning and just chilled in bed before calling it a night.
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Edited at 06:29 PM.
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Unread 20 Oct 18, 06:33 PM  
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sounds like an great day!
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Unread 20 Oct 18, 10:14 PM  
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Really enjoying reading along 😀
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Unread 20 Oct 18, 10:15 PM  
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Another brilliant day. The boat trip looked fantastic and the food looked delicious. Thanks so much for sharing!
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Unread 20 Oct 18, 11:14 PM  
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Im so impressed by how full on your days are. Making the most of every second.
The catamaran trip looked loads of fun. Boudin is a must visit isnt it. All looked lovely.
Enjoying your trippie. Thanks for sharing.
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Unread 21 Oct 18, 03:56 PM  
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Another amazing day. You all look like your having a fantastic time😊
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Unread 21 Oct 18, 06:57 PM  
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What an amazing day! Sounds like a great experience on the catamaran.
Lunch looked lovely.
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Time to start planning
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