It was another fine Sunday. It was neither hot nor cold. We were in San Francisco and were about to do a tour of captivating San Francisco and what better way to start than getting into a ferry and cruising the waters of San Francisco Bay!
So we drove down Embarcadero to park our car at Pier 3. I must say that the pier itself was an attraction. Docked there was the grand old San Francisco Belle and the elegant Santa Rosa along with some other vessels. After looking around and taking a few pictures, we made our way to the Ferry Building on Pier 1, all set for the cruise.
Ferry building has for a very long time been the terminal for the ferries that go across the San Francisco Bay. The present Ferry Building is said to have been built in 1898, in place of a wooden building that was there earlier. This building with a clock tower, which is now an important landmark of San Francisco, is also a proud survivor of the two big earthquakes that the city saw in the 20th century. This terminal which was the gateway for passenger and freight vessels for years is said to have faced a sharp decline in its use when new ports were developed in other parts around the bay and when the Bay Bridge and the Golden Gate Bridge were built. Over the years this building was put to several other uses. Now one of the bigger attractions here is the Ferry Building Marketplace.
Fortunately the Ferry Building has not lost all of its identity. Today there are several cruises that set sail from here. Our cruise to Sausalito in Marin County too began right here. We collected our boarding passes from our tour agent at the entrance of the massive building and made our way to the other side of it. On the way to the waterfront, we picked up some Argentinian pasteries to pacify the hunger that was building up. It was around 12:30 in the afternoon and our place for lunch was on the other side of the Golden Gate strait. Then we walked out to the Gandhi (you read that right) statue, where were asked to assemble, for a briefing on the cruise and the rest of the tour, before we boarded the ferry.
Once inside the ferry we saw that there was a cafe on board, but as we had had our snack, we settled down to enjoy the cruise. The San Francisco – Sausalito ferry took about half an hour or so but it seemed longer than that, I guess that was because we got engrossed in the sights we got to see. We got to see sail boats, the Bay Bridge, San Francisco skyline and the the famous Golden Gate Bridge to name a few, before we set foot on Marin County.