Killing Time in San Francisco’s Outer Richmond

A bit ago, I accidentally showed up to my book club meeting in San Francisco a whole seven hours early. Oops! We typically do brunch, but I missed the memo that we switched to dinner. It’s a good thing there are a lot of ways to fill your time in San Francisco.

San Francisco Marlas Bakery CoffeeAfter catching up with one of the gals for a bit the BF looped back to pick me up and we tracked down a tasty coffee shop with a great outdoor space. It was a bit gloomy but still nice enough to enjoy the day so we headed to Marla’s Bakery. The coffee, espresso, and tea here are all great and fresh. The pastries are to die for, you won’t be able to decide what you want and might just end up stuffing your face with a handful. Their back deck feels like it could be your home as well as the little garden down below it. I pulled out a book and just relaxed like I was in my own backyard.

By the time we finished out late morning coffee we realized how hungry we were. Craving a burger, we discovered Uncle Boy’s. I wasn’t so sure about it at first, but the BF insisted and he was right (he normally is). This hole in the wall spot may not have much of an atmosphere, but the food melted in your mouth. The hardest part is deciding whether you want mozzarella sticks, jalapeño poppers or one of the other creative toppings on your burger. We tried a Cowboy and a Poolboy. The bacon was thick, the meat and sauces were full of flavors, and the fries were cooked to perfection.

Golden Gate Park Trail San Francisco Instead of trying to find another parking spot (I hate driving in the city) we took a short walk to Golden Gate Park. I love the park but haven’t explored too much of it. We started by just wandering around some trails but then realized we were right next to the De Young Museum. We popped in and although we didn’t want to spend much time inside, it’s a great place to stop in to explore the shop, a bit of the building, and even a few key pieces of the collection. The BF even got some good Christmas shopping done.

Next, we made our way to the Japanese Tea Garden, San Fracisco Golden Gate Park Japanese Tea Garden Viewwhich was just breathtaking. The detail to the place was exceptional from each plant to all the tiles or stones. I loved everything from the art, to the koi, to the trees and shrubs. It was taken over by the changing colors of Fall which matched the structures so well. In the Spring, I am sure the blooms are just as amazing. We kept stopping to just sit and soak up the place. We finished at the tea house for a soothing drink and great views before heading out of the park.

San Francisco Golden Gate Japanese Tea Garden

By the end of our unexpected adventure, we were only 30 minutes early and got to enjoy a great meal and discussion with friends. Some of the best travels and days are those that don’t go the way you plan.

Have you ever been stuck killing time in a city and enjoy the outcome? If you’re ever stuck in San Francisco don’t forget to check out my to do list.

For more information about San Francisco check out these great books on Amazon including 111 Places in San Francisco That You Must Not MissLonely Planet San Francisco, and Fodor’s San Francisco.

About Megan

Megan MacNee is the founder of Traveling Nine to Fiver. From nine to five she works in the non-profit world in California. She focuses on exploring the world from her own backyard to across the globe. You'll find her sharing about explorations through food, books, travel, and more.