Mar 25

Check out the parks and trails in and around San Bruno.

Sawyer Camp Trail

The Sawyer Camp Trail is a segment of the larger Crystal Springs Regional Trail and is designated for bicyclists, hikers, joggers and equestrians. The best known trail in San Mateo County, Sawyer Camp is about six miles in length, so come and enjoy the hiking and biking.

Junipero Serra Park

Junipero Serra Park 300x157 Trails and Parks around San Bruno, California

Junipero Serra Park is offering panoramic views of the Bay area; Junipero Serra Park features a large playground, picnic areas and hiking trails. The 108 acre park is home to several species of native trees and wildflowers as well as an abundance of wildlife. This place is exactly for wildlife lovers.

Crystal Springs Walking Trail

The Crystal Springs Walking Trail is a part of the larger Crystal Springs Regional Trail designated for hikers, joggers and equestrians. The trail offers views of the Upper Crystal Springs Reservoir and connects several other trails in the area. The place is so beautiful that you can’t ignore while in San Bruno.

San Bruno Mountain

San Bruno Mountain 300x159 Trails and Parks around San Bruno, California

San Bruno Mountain is one of the United States’ largest urban open spaces where it spread in 3,300 acres of undeveloped land atop the mountain are most frequented for hiking and sightseeing. Search for more San Bruno Mountain.

San Bruno City Park

The largest park in San Bruno, San Bruno City Park features three baseball diamonds, tennis courts, a recreation center and a senior center. The park also offers several play areas and a city pool.

Commodore Park

One of San Bruno’s larger city parks, Commodore Park offers a baseball field, picnic areas, barbecue pits and play areas. The park also features a fully enclosed exercise area for dogs.

City Of San Bruno Free Concerts in the Park

In warm weather, San Bruno City Park features its City of San Bruno Free Concerts in the Park series. Performing in the Rotary Pavilion, live brands bring a variety of music to the park including country, Motown, swing and rock.

Centennial Way Trail

Centennial Way Trail 300x219 Trails and Parks around San Bruno, California

The Centennial Way Trail is a three-mile, Class I bicycle and pedestrian trail. Built on the land above the Bay Area’s underground rail system, the trail runs from South San Francisco to San Bruno.

San Bruno Point Park

Serene Ocean views await guests of San Bruno Point Park. Hiking is a popular area pastimen, along with fishing. Make use of the outdoor grill and benches for a picnic lunch.

Julius Kahn Playground

Having been recently refurbished, the Julius Kahn Playground provides a safe, fun environment for children to play. There is also a clubhouse on site which allows families to get out of the sun on a hot day.

Mills Creek Canyon Park

Take in the natural wonder of Burlingame, California at Mills Creek Canyon Park. The trails pave the way through majestic trees, grassy meadows, streams, and grasslands filled with wild growth and wilderness.

Burlingame Dog Exercise Park

Burlingame Dog Exercise Park 300x90 Trails and Parks around San Bruno, California

Burlingame Dog Exercise Park is the place to go with man’s best friend in California. Gated parks for both small and large dogs allow for a more personal play place fit for all breeds, completed with benches and water fountains.

San Bruno Mountain State & County Park

Offering easy hiking trails and walking paths, as well as places to sit and relax in the great outdoors, San Bruno Mountain State & County Park consists of rugged terrain over 2,326 acres with incredible views.

Cuernavaca Park

Bring the family to play on the edges of the Bay at Cuernavaca Park in Burlingame, California. Enjoy baseball, softball, and basketball alongside the children’s play area with a spectacular view.

Washington Park

The first park established in Burlingame, these grounds hold both recreational and historical significance. A baseball facility dating back to the 1930′s and beautiful towering trees from the original estate grounds bring antiquity to the playgrounds and picnic areas.

Stay at the Howard Johnson hotel near San Francisco International Airport offering complimentary Breakfast and High Speed Internet and witness the beauty of San Bruno and San Francisco. The luxurious rooms of our San Francisco Airport hotel are fully equipped with Hair Dryer, Iron / Ironing Board, Coffee / Tea Maker, Microwave / Refrigerator and many other amenities. Make your hotel reservation in San Bruno.

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Mar 11

Early History

Prior to 1750, the San Francisco Peninsula was inhabited by the Ohlone Indians. Ohlone is the name that has been given to the many related groups of Native Americans living along the coast between Monterey and San Francisco. They were hunter gatherers who relied largely on the bay and ocean for food. The Ohlone used tule reeds that grew near the bay and along the many creeks in the area to build their homes and canoes. While as many as several thousand Ohlone are estimated to have lived in the area, probably no more than a few dozen lived in the area that now makes up San Bruno at any one time. There have been three hunting campsites uncovered. One of them has been found along San Bruno Creek, which runs through Junipero Serra County Park and San Bruno City Park. The other two were near the creek that flows through Crestmoor Canyon.

Early History 300x195 Discover the History of San Bruno

European Settlement

Captain Bruno Heceta explored the western shore of the San Francisco Bay in 1775. He named the largest land mass on that side of the peninsula Mount San Bruno, after his patron saint. Saint Bruno the Confessor was an 11th century monk and founder of the Carthusian order of monks. The City of San Bruno was named after the mountain. The City is also where the two main roads around the mountain meet. The Bayshore Road and the Mission Road / Railroad follow paths that existed in Captain Heceta’s day. While the Spanish explored California they began to establish missions. In 1776, a mission was established in San Francisco. The government of the newly explored territory was centered at the mission on the Monterey Peninsula, 100 miles to the south, so a road connecting the two missions was needed. At the time, the easiest route was up the heart of the peninsula between the coastal mountains and the marshes along the bay. This road became El Camino Real.

In the 1820s, the San Bruno land was awarded to Jose Antonio Sanchez by the Mexican Government for his years of military service. His property spanned from San Bruno Mountain in the north to Burlingame in the south and from the bay in the east to the mountain ridge in the west. When Sanchez died in 1843, his land was to be divided between his nine heirs. Before this could happen, however, the property had to be inventoried by the Mexican Government. This was a long and costly process. In the meantime the Mexican-American war began in 1846. After the United States won the war in 1848, Sanchez’s heirs lost the land though the court system. Much of the Sanchez land was purchased by Darius Mills, founder of the Bank of California.

San Bruno during Early Statehood

In the early 1850s, James Thorpe built a lean-to on what is now El Camino and San Mateo Avenue for changing and watering horses on the “county road” between San Jose and San Francisco. Eventually, in 1875, after several changes of ownership and name, Thorpe’s Place, or the 14 Mile House, was transformed by August Jenevein into Uncle Tom’s Cabin, an eating, drinking and gaming establishment. The Cabin thrived during the nearly 75 years it was open. During prohibition a speakeasy was run out of the garage behind the Cabin. Uncle Tom’s Cabin was one of the most prominent landmarks in the city until it was torn down in 1949. Know more about San Bruno.

San Bruno Becomes a City

Much of San Bruno had been developed from wilderness to ranch land by the 1880s. The ranches supplied San Francisco with horses’ milk and meat. After the San Francisco earthquake and fire in 1906 the San Bruno Park Addition was developed into housing. Several other new neighborhoods sprung up in the area until 1914 when San Bruno became an official municipality. At that time San Bruno had roughly 1400 residents.

Stay at the Howard Johnson hotel near San Francisco International Airport offering complimentary Breakfast and High Speed Internet and witness the beauty of San Bruno and San Francisco. The luxurious rooms of our San Francisco Airport hotel are fully equipped with Hair Dryer, Iron / Ironing Board, Coffee / Tea Maker, Microwave / Refrigerator and many other amenities. Make your hotel reservation in San Bruno.

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Mar 05

San Francisco is one of the greatest places to visit due to its diverse culture and multitude of activities to partake in. China Town in San Francisco is a hot tourist destination that is well deserving of its crowds. SF’s Chinatown is one of the largest Chinatowns outside of Asia, and if you come to visit, you’ll believe it. San Francisco’s Chinatown is not only the oldest Chinatown in North American, it is part of the largest Chinese community outside of China. The Dragon Gate at its entrance on Grant Street at Bush Street is the only authentic Chinatown gate in North America build head to toe from stone.

SF Chinatown 300x225 Exploring China Town in San FranciscoThe present day Chinatown was rebuilt from the rubble of the original Chinatown after the 1906 earthquake and fire. There is too much to explore in Chinatown. The San Francisco Chinatown site is a fantastic resource, for spending time and exploring the most historically significant neighborhoods in San Francisco and a large cultural influence on the present day city. Chinatown has been one of the most significant standing grounds for many Chinese immigrants starting their new lifestyles overseas.

Most Popular China Town Attractions are as follows:

Sing Chong Building: The Building was the first building to be rebuilt after the 1906 earthquake and fire in San Francisco. It is the most popular and unique muti-tiered pagoda building, using a mixture of Edwardian and Chinoiserie architectural design which attracted many tourists and is the most photographed building in San Francisco.

Chinese Telephone Exchange: In 1891, the site was the first public telephone pay station where switchboard was used and it was the main means for Chinatown residents to contact their family and buisness partners in China.

Chinatown Dragon Gate: The gate is located on Grant Avenue, which is the oldest street in San Francisco which was installed in 1969 and was a gift from the government of the Republic of China.

Golden Gate Fortune Cookie Factory: The Factory is an old-fashioned factory that makes thousands of fortune cookies everyday for decades located in Ross Alley in Chinatown and there are many alleys and passage ways all over Chinatown. Often people call this factory a hidden treasure in San Francisco.

Old Saint Mary’s Cathedral: The Old Saint Mary’s Church is the oldest cathedral in California. The church was built mainly by Chinese laborers who use granite quarried in China and brought bricks from New England. The 1906 earthquake and fire destroyed most buildings in Chinatown but the Old Saint Mary’s Church survived and became a California Registered Historical Landmark.

Waverly Place: The place is known as the “street with painted balconies.” It was not built for being a tourist spot but became a top tourist place in Chinatown after many film makings such as “The Pursuit of Happyness” that used Waverly Place as a backdrop scene by actor Will Smith. The Place is historically significant for the entire city, not only for Chinatown.

Tin How Temple: It is the oldest Chinese temple dedicated to Mazu the formal title of Tin How. The temple is located on the top floor of the building where you have to climb three flights of stairs and by pass clan associations, commonly mistaken as mahjong parlors, on the second floor.

Great Chinatown restaurants and snack shops:

Especially if you don’t often have authentic Chinese food, you’ll have a great time in many of Chinatown’s restaurants. Some are more polished and tourist-friendly, while others really are authentically local. One of great example is the Hong Kong Clay Pot sits at 960 Grant Avenue, Jackson Street. A classic stop for Chinese would be R & G Lounge sits on 631 Kearny Street. Though more polished in looks than the Hong Kong Clay Pot above, serves authentic Chinese, though it’s a fair bit pricier than others.

Two main streets: Grant Avenue and Stockton Street:

Chinatown has two main streets: Grant Avenue and Stockton Street. Grant Avenue is the tourist main street. This is the one featured in many photos, as it has the landmark arch entrance. Loud, polished, and sometimes even glitzy, this is the tourist trap section of Chinatown. It has a decent selection of restaurants and an incredible variety of odd souvenirs. Stockton Avenue is the more local and more authentic main street. Here you can find the markets selling live frogs to eat, fresh fruits and vegetables, elders playing mahjong or Chinese chess, and old ladies that will shove you off the sidewalk. If you want to see the local side of Chinatown, go there and enjoy.

San Francisco is filled with many other attractions which are well worth a visit. Come stay with us at the Howard Johnson in San Bruno and book directly on the hotel’s website for the lowest possible rates:

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Feb 19

The beautiful city of San Francisco is located at the western coast of California. It has been one of the most important tourist spots in the US and millions come every year to see San Francisco attractions. It is a must stop if you ever get a chance to visit California’s western coast. The city was found by the Spanish in 1776.

The Red Poppy Art House

The Red Poppy Art House is a neighborhood center for the intersection of cultural and inter-generational artistic engagement located in the heart of San Francisco’s Mission District.

The Red Poppy Art House provides a space for artistic expression on Folsom Street. A quite cozy venue, with a total area of 650 square feet (60.4 square meters), the Red Poppy plays host to a passel of events, including musical performances, art exhibitions, dance events, and even film screenings. The venue also organizes workshops and art programs that have been well-received in the city’s art community.

This place is small and cozy.  A variety of artists perform, and sometimes they play an early and late show. There are different cozy chairs to choose from, and a selection of wine and beer. Great place to go with a friend to catch up between sets. The art classes, hands down.  There’s a painting class that’s held about twice a year called “The art of not knowing”, a truly superb way to just let your emotions pour out onto the canvas.

The Art House is such a special place for a community of creative, musical and politically active people to gather and share beautiful moments through sharing art, ideas and experiences.

The Red Poppy Art House is a working artists’ studio, gallery, classroom, and performance space. We are dedicated to providing an accessible and intimate experience of the arts, and are convinced that the joy and power of the arts lie in the creative process much more than in the creative product. We are committed to bringing that process to public light. The Art House hosts interdisciplinary arts events, collaborative exhibitions, workshops, small concerts, and private parties.

Bay City Bike Rentals

Bay City Bike Rentals and Tours has been modernizing the bike rental market in San Francisco and surrounding areas. The idea for an efficient and easy bicycle rental operation in San Francisco was the idea of husband and wife who sought to offer visitors top quality bikes for rentals and tours. The goal of the small, family-run business was to transform the rental business with professional, bright, clean and welcoming facilities; new, high quality bikes replaced annually; exceptional customer service; and quick check-out procedures. Over the years, we’ve expanded to four Fisherman’s Wharf storefronts featuring 100s of bicycles. We feature a fleet of 1,000+ bicycles; from standard Comfort Hybrids, Performance Bikes and Tandems, to Electric, Kids and Road Bikes. With each rental we include a map, route advice, helmets, bike storage and rear gear racks. We give you the option to comfortably and safely experience San Francisco like a true native. Guests can indulge in the road less traveled and the exciting “underground” routes through this spectacular city offers using our custom, high quality maps that detailing rides for all levels of riders and interests. In addition to self-guided rentals, we feature four Daily Guided Tours led by expertly trained guides.

Bay City Bike Rentals 300x200 Travel To San Francisco Attractions

These tours take guests over the Golden Gate Bridge to Sausalito, around the city on a custom urban tour, and through the historic back roads of the Presidio- respectively. The guides strive to provide an excellent experience for guests, with safety and fun as the objectives of each tour. Our Tour Guides retain the freedom to personalize their tours with their personality and to cater to their riders’ needs – if riders are experienced the tour can be embellished; if riders are novice the tour can slow it down a bit.

Madame Tussauds

Madame Tussauds in San Francisco is great for families. There are scenes from Haight Street and the Golden Gate Bridge. There are also props like guitars, drum sets, umbrellas, etc to use at some of the figures, so you can take some more interesting photos. This place has costume-bits and props for people to dress up and appear in the scene along with their favorite famous wax people.

The museum displayed a few figures of current interest in the lobby, which is open to the street. The bodies of the wax statues are made of wood, fiberglass and beeswax. The process to make each figure and prepare it for display takes approximately two or three months. Many of the sculptures were created by Gem’s Wax Figures in London. A few were crafted by Ron Fong, others by Los Angeles wax sculptor Henry Alvarez, and the museum’s resident sculptor, Kahn Gasimov who was hired away from London’s Madame Tussauds.

Madame Tussauds is the ultimate celebrity fun day out, where else can you get up close and personal with A-List celebrities, sporting legends, political heavyweights and historical icons and relive the lives, events and moments that made the world talk about them.

You even get to go behind the scenes to discover what it takes to create these incredibly lifelike models. Want more? Upgrade to combine this experience with admission to the San Francisco Dungeon next door.

A wide variety of food and San Francisco hotels can be found here which is suitable for all budgets and palates.

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Feb 05

San Bruno is a landmark of local and regional significance, standing as a unique open-space island in the midst of the peninsula’s urbanization at the northern end of the Santa Cruz Mountain Range. The Mountain’s ridge line runs in an east-west configuration, with considerable slopes and elevations ranging from 250 feet to 1,314 feet at the summit. The 2,326 acres of rugged landscape offer excellent hiking opportunities and outstanding views of San Francisco and Central Bay Area.


Carolands Mansion, also known as “The Chateau,” was constructed around 1915 and considered one of the finest examples of French Classical architecture in America.  It is listed on the National Registry of Historic Places and is a California State Landmark.

The home was built in Hillsborough by Harriett Pullman Carolan, the heiress to the Pullman railroad car fortune, and her husband Francis J. Carolan. French architect Ernest Sanson designed the 98-room estate on its 554-acre site. A renowned local architect Willis Polk acted as the construction supervisor.  French landscape architect Achilles Duchene designed the gardens, which originally included a tea house, swimming pool, orangerie and tempietto.

A magnificent color portfolio shows the house and garden today, which have been meticulously restored by Carolands’ current owners. Martin Lane Fox, until recently Vice Chairman of the Royal Horticultural Society and Chairman of its Horticultural Board, was asked to re-create the gardens, and the legendary Mario Buatta undertook the interior decoration.

An outstanding feature of the book is the reproduction of original drawings and plans by Sanson, Duchene, and Polk, all specially photographed for the book, as well as original letters among the three on the design and construction of Carolands and archival photographs of the interiors and furnishings.

Bay Model Visitor Center

The Bay Model Visitor Center is a fully accessible education center administered by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers which makes possible the viewing of a scientific tool: a working hydraulic model of the San Francisco Bay and Sacramento – San Joaquin River Delta System.

The Bay Model Visitor Center is a fully accessible education center administered by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers which makes possible the viewing of a scientific tool: a working hydraulic model of the San Francisco Bay and Sacramento – San Joaquin River Delta System.

The San Francisco Bay Model is truly an engineer’s & kid’s delight. It is both educational and interesting! Many scientific groups also visit. Furthermore, it is FREE!

This giant 1.5 acre working model of the entire San Francisco Bay was developed in 1957 by the Army Corps of Engineers. Its purpose was to study human effects on the SF Bay and to help keep the Bay navigable for shipping.

The Bay Model is a three-dimensional hydraulic model of San Francisco Bay and Delta areas capable of simulating tides and currents.

The model is the size of two football fields, representing 1,600 square miles of the San Francisco Bay and San Joaquin Delta, stretching from the Pacific Ocean to 71 miles inland. Standing on a platform overlooking the model, it’s similar to looking down from a plane overlooking the region from 10,000 feet up.

More than 135,000 gallons of water are pumped daily into the model, simulating tides, water flow, sediment movement, and the mixing of fresh and salt waters. Features that affect the water flow are included, including rivers, creeks, sloughs, ship channels, canals, bridges, and large piers.

Grateful Dead House

The Grateful Dead formed in 1965 and it was here that their unique style of rock, folk, bluegrass, blues, gospel, country, jazz and reggae came together in the style that is unique to this renowned group. Influenced by John Coltrane’s style of improvisation, as well as the psychedelic experience, the band formed first as the Warlocks, later changing their name to the Grateful Dead house. The band often played at the Fillmore Auditorium and the Avalon Ballroom, and until the death of Jerry Garcia, often played impromptu gigs at local parks and venues.

grateful dead house 300x255 Carolands Mansion near San Francisco

The Haight hippy scene in the 60′s was characterized by the youth movement, starting out as love, freedom and flower power, then moving into drugs and violence, as hippies demonstrated against the Vietnam War. Music of the Grateful Dead captured the sentiments of this period in history and remains a timeless representation of this tumultuous era. The Grateful Dead developed a cult following, with many Deadheads following the band across the country.

The three stories Victorian, known as the Grateful Dead house, is a privately owned house, it is not a museum. Despite that, a trip to San Francisco would be incomplete without a drive past this historical residence.

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