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5 Free San Francisco Museums Walk

  • Feb 16, 2013 · 10:30 AM
  • Starbucks

Now open for RSVPs. The cost of the walk goes up to $3 per adult starting with this walk. This walk has the most rain shelter of all of our walks.

Our starting point now is the Starbucks on the corner of Davis & Jackson. This is better than the Starbucks that we used to start at on Drumm Street. We will have a lot of room at Davis & Jackson plus 2 extra restrooms in the nearby Safeway Store.

At about 10:40 AM we will walk to the nearby Sidney Walton Park to take our group photo. Then we will walk up the big stairway and then South to 2 Embarcadero and then we turn East and walk through 2, 3 & 4 Embarcadero to the Hyatt Regency Hotel's back stairs where I will collect the $3. We will probably not walk through the hotel this time, but at end of the walk some of us could have a drink and or food in the hotel's bar.

We will walk to FREE museums and any other enjoyable FREE thing around downtown San Francisco that we can find. We will visit inside (for about 15 minutes each) 5 free museums and galleries that deal with history. We will see other museums that are free, but unfortunately are closed during the weekend. If we get heavy rain I may change the route including possibly cutting out the last two free museums and adding a closer free museum. The only cost is $3 cash per adult for the walk.

Attendees should bring a sack lunch or buy one at or near our starting point. I know an indoor place where we can usually eat our sack lunches if it rains. Do not be concerned if a large number of people say they are coming because usually only about half really show up. We expect to return to the starting point about 3:30 PM. We may change the route some if we get serious rain.

If you are not on our "Yes" RSVP list please do not show up because at least one of the 5 museums cannot hold more than 65 people. Usually only about half of the "Yes" RSVPs show up, but we never know before the event what the turnout will be.

This walk is about 4 miles. The first 2 miles is flat and one may leave at any time without penalty. The last couple miles goes up Nob Hill and then down and flat to return to our starting area. To get to our starting point using BART get off at the Embarcadero Station. Then walk North on Davis Street for 5 short blocks where you will reach Jackson where the Safeway and the Starbucks are.

I encourage attendees to not drive there. If driving one could park at the Embarcadero Center garage. One of the garage's entrances is on Davis Street between Clay and Sacramento. One can get validated parking for the first 4 hours with purchase of $10 at a retail store there. Here is a link:

Photos below are in the order of places on this walk's route, except for the bottom photo of a bike riding naked fat man on this route.

Group photo (03/13/10) at the Hyatt Regency Hotel's back door.

Photo below is of free outdoor art, a fake spaceship.

Photo below is of Ferry Building with a couple of old street cars.

Photo below is of free big outdoor art, "Cupid's Bow."

Photo below is of free big outdoor art, "Cupid's Bow."

I was walking this area one day and a signal light kept calling out my name "Howard" over and over. I thought it was because of GPS, computers and the internet, but it was just Howard Street.

Below I photograph the group before we enter the 1st museum.

Photo below is in one of the 5 free museums/galleries we will visit.

Photo below is in one of the 5 free museums/galleries we will visit.

Photo below is in one of the 5 free museums/galleries we will visit.

Photo below is one of the things we will pass on this walk.

Photo below is one of the things we will pass on this walk.

Photo below is in one of the 5 free museums/galleries we will visit.

Photo below is in one of the 5 free museums/galleries we will visit.

We will visit a photo gallery and see many historical photos such as the one below taken in a mine showing President U. S. Grant.

Below is one of the naked bike riders we saw (6 fat men & 1 lovely woman) on our lunch break,[masked], in Justin Herman Plaza when the St. Patrick's Day Parade was happening on Market St.

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  • Tammy A.

    Another awesome trek with Howard, encompassing the diverse history of SF with a great workout for the ol' thighs. Until next time!

    February 20, 2013

  • David

    I'm really looking forward the learning more about SF, I moved here last year and love the area.

    February 20, 2013

  • Padma C.

    Thank you very much Howard!! I loved my first walk! It was great to meet wonderful people and to learn so much about this beautiful city!! Looking forward to the next...and thank you for the pictures :-)

    February 18, 2013

  • Karen B.

    Three cheers for Howard, our historian and general handler. It was my first time. I met lots of great people, walked lots, got fresh air and learned about beautiful downtown San Francisco.

    1 · February 18, 2013

  • Barbara P

    It was great to meet new people while learning about the city and getting exercise....thanks Howard!

    February 18, 2013

  • Howard S.

    We got back to our starting point 45 minutes late because we had some unusual things happen: We were lucky to meet one of the men who built the fake rocket ship work of art. It is a Buck Rogers style rocket that is visible in our photos. Also, one of the 5 museums was closed for changing exhibits. To make up for losing one museum I changed our route and took us to a 6th free museum that we always visit when we do our Telegraph Hill walk.

    February 16, 2013

    • Karen B.

      Thanks for being our leader yesterday. It was my first experience. Even though the Chinese Cultural Center exhibit was closed we got to see some of the Chinese Terra Cotta horses and at least one soldier. Plus it is Chinese New Years so there were snakes and dragons abounding. Chinatown was pretty great too. I had no idea SF had so many flowers and street art. What a wonderful way to spend the day.

      February 17, 2013

  • Nancy

    Apologies for the last-minute cancellation!

    February 16, 2013

  • Marko

    Hi Howard,
    I apologize for last minute change. I just learned that I have to work this weekend :(

    February 16, 2013

  • AG

    Can't make it -- darn

    February 15, 2013

  • Ellen

    I am so sorry I can't make this. My work has gotten scheduled for Sat.

    February 14, 2013

  • Laura K

    See you all Saturday

    February 14, 2013

  • Teresa S

    Sorry, something has come up.

    February 13, 2013

  • Faye


    February 12, 2013

  • Howard S.

    On the waiting list having a guest greatly lowers your chances of getting into the Feb. 16th walk because Meetup's automatic waiting system gives you the lowest priority. You can get around that by removing the +1, +2 or +3 and have your guest(s) become members and sign themselves in. It is that made that system and not the organizers.

    February 11, 2013

  • erichan l.

    yes. first time

    February 11, 2013

  • Rita

    I'm sorry I have to miss it.

    February 10, 2013

  • Crystal. L

    Have to work that day, next time.

    February 10, 2013

  • margaret

    my schedule changed and I will be out of town - next time!

    February 9, 2013

  • Rebecca F.

    Hi Howard,
    Sorry I can't make it.

    February 8, 2013

  • Robin M.

    Thanks. As is turns out I need to cancel and was about to notify you. I/we hope to join a future walk.

    February 8, 2013

  • Mark

    going to next weeks instead

    February 8, 2013

  • Karen B.

    I'd love to join the walk.

    February 5, 2013

    • Howard S.

      It is OK now. You and your guest are now on the "Yes" RSVP list.

      February 7, 2013

  • Mary

    Have to work most Saturdays... RATS!! Are the walks ever on Sundays?

    January 30, 2013

    • Howard S.

      We will have a bunch of Sunday walks in 2013, but they will be in Oakland and Berkeley, but they will all start close to a BART station.

      February 6, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member


    February 1, 2013

  • Niv


    January 30, 2013

  • Linda L.

    How can I tell if I signed up for this hike? I don't see my photo in the list, but I think I signed up for it.


    January 28, 2013

    • Howard S.

      To Linda Lewin. I can see you on the list for this walk & you are also on the list for the Feb. 2nd walk.

      January 28, 2013

  • Jeffrey K.

    I will attend

    January 28, 2013

  • Midalia

    Hello. My name's Mia and I look forward to this event. Sounds fun!

    January 27, 2013

  • Nikki

    Switched to the 2/23 walk instead due to a schedule conflict on the 16th.

    January 26, 2013

  • BettyAnn

    Very new. Been here two weeks. Looking forward to learning and discovery - and meeting all of you.

    January 26, 2013

  • Thomas C.

    I am new to this area, live in Sunnyvale, and would like to explore S.F. with this group!

    January 26, 2013

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