Golden Gate Park is the main natural wonder of romantic San Francisco. This captivating vibrant metropolis blossomed during the Gold Rush Era of the mid-19th-century, and still has many of its original mansions and buildings intact from that time. In its early days, the Bay Area was the center of technological marvels, such as the cable car transport system, Coit Tower and, later, the iconic Golden Gate Bridge. Discover these landmarks when you stay at one of these incredible Victorian or modern properties, bookable with Culture Trip.
When the new owners of the Stanyan Park Hotel purchased this 1905 property on Stanyan Street, between Haight and Waller, a neighbor stopped by with a picture of the original property. That picture now hangs in the lobby, since it was decided then and there to turn the planned hotel into a restoration project. Now on the National Register of Historic Places, this elegant Beaux-Arts building was completely restored in 1983 and offers affordable and comfortable accommodation in its Victorian-styled bedrooms and suites, right across the street from Golden Gate Park. A sumptuous free breakfast is available every day, as well as a wine and cheese reception every weekday night.
The boutique Metro Hotel, situated in the Haight-Ashbury neighborhood of San Francisco, is an arty and stylish destination. There is a variety of accommodation ranging from double twins to a private studio; rooms are flooded with natural light, and the views over the gardens are exceptional. Without a doubt, it is the central location that will draw guests back again and again, as well as the peaceful ambience and cool vibe of this trendy hotel.
Timeless romance and grand style are what the Queen Anne Hotel in Pacific Heights is known for. This property harks back to the excess of San Francisco’s Gold Rush Era. You will feel you have stepped back in time at this magnificent Victorian mansion – think four-poster beds, chinoiserie, chandeliers, damask curtains and many more authentic touches from the period. An excellent breakfast in their sumptuous dining room is also included .
This magnificent brownstone mansion was built in 1900, and boasts an arched entrance and flower-lined courtyard that guides you into an understated yet elegant environment. Splurge on the vast garden suite at this unique Victorian accommodation, which is decorated with antique furnishings and features touches of 19th-century charm throughout. Jackson Court has 10 magnificent guest suites that are individually owned, though an extended continental breakfast is included. There is even a game room for all guests to enjoy.
The Marker in downtown San Francisco, sitting only blocks from world-famous Union Square, is a Beaux-Arts property that captures the mood of the vibrant city. It first opened in 1910 as the Bellevue Hotel with 208 rooms, but underwent extensive renovation and re-opened in 2018 with 42 spacious jewel-toned suites, as well as 40 double-bed rooms. It’s all about ease here: amenities include valet parking, a 24-hour fitness center and yoga mat on request.
You can’t find a better base for your San Francisco vacation than one just moments from Union Square. Despite its central location, Hotel Nikko manages to create a sense of serenity with its Asian-inspired hospitality. Daily breakfast, Sunday brunch and Wednesday through Saturday evenings, the Hotel Nikko’s Restaurant Anzu offers contemporary Japanese and California-inspired cuisine. The use of the hotel’s 10,000sqft (930sqm) full-service fitness center and glass-enclosed swimming pool are included in the daily amenity fee.
Want to imagine what it was like to be ultra-rich during San Francisco’s Gold Rush Era? Book a stay at the luxury boutique Mansion on Sutter. Offering 17,000sqft (1,580sqm) of living space, art and antiques of the Victorian period, it is the only five-star hotel of its type, as well as having incomparable service and fully renovated guest rooms. Formerly the property of an important San Francisco family, the Payne House is the last of the large homes on Sutter between Franklin and Gough. The building had the most advanced plumbing of its day, including central heating and bathrooms that were fully integrated into the house, not just out on a porch or verandah.
Not convinced? Find everything you’re looking for at one of the best hotels in San Francisco or venture further afield and book a stay at one of the most incredible hotels in Monterey. You can then enjoy seaside views at one of the best restaurants in Monterey or explore the best beaches near San Francisco. While in the area, make sure to also check these must-visit attractions in San Francisco off your bucket list.
Destinations Unlocked:Let our travel expert Stefano help you find your perfect Culture trip
Looking for an expert's perspective?Uncover my top 3 recommended places from each continent on the map.
1. GuatemalaAn express adventure for those with limited time off. Prepare yourself incredible experiences. You will hike a volcano, visit mayan temples and witness a ceremony and take in beautiful colonial Antigua.
2. BelizeA quick trip not too far away for those seeking a relaxing mini break. You will have plenty of free time to relax but also some awesome activities to experience the rainforest and the caribbean sea.
3. MexicoAn exciting mini trip exploring the lesser known colonial towns of central Mexico. This is hte perfect trip for someone with limited time off and still wants to turn on explorer mode and do something different.
1. EcuadorA remarkable 8 days adventure through the Andes and the Amazon rainforest. The best choice for adventure seekers wishing to visit the 2 most iconic areas of South America, in only 1 week and no flights.
2. PeruAn alternative itinerary to classic Peru, from Cusco to Arequipa. This itinerary is great combination of highlights Cusco and Machu Picchu with the lesser known Arequipa and Colca Canyon.
1. ItalyThe ultimate Italian experience from the vibrant streets of Naples to the breathtaking sceneries of the Amalfi Coast followed by Matera and down to Puglia with its golden beaches, intense flavours and fascinating destinations.
2. ScotlandEmbark on this great adventure starting from London all the way to Scotland with a true Scottish experience made of breathtaking sceneries, whisky tasting and ..lots of fun! Ideal for train lovers and explorers.
3. PortugalA wonderful train journey around Portugal, from the romantic city of Porto to the Douro Valley, to the beautiful Aveiro all the way to Lisbon and Sintra. The perfect trip to train, culinary and culture lovers.
1. South KoreaDiscover incredible temples, mountains and modern cities on this 10 day adventure. This trip is perfect for those seeking immersion in the cuisine, culture and natural wonders of South Korea.
2. ThailandFrom Bankgok to Angkor Wat to Ho Chi Minh City and everything in between - adventure through the heart of South-East Asia. Taste the delights, see history brought to life and unwind on a Mekong River cruise.
3. Sri LankaA fantastic adventure that showcases Sri Lanka's fantastic landscapes, wildlife and flavours. With 3 epic rail journeys, 3 UNESCO heritage sites and time to relax, this trip has loads to offer at a great price
1. MoroccoAn epic journey across Morocco: from Casablanca to Marrakech, through the blue city of Chefchaouen to the wonders of the desert and deep to the High Atlas Mountains - this trip has it all! Ideal for true explorers!
2. EgyptFrom Cairo to Aswan, this trip brings the land of the pharaohs to life. You'll visit the Pyramids, Valley of the Kings and Luxor Temple and cruise down the Nile in style. This is the perfect way to explore Egypt.
Volcanic Iceland Epic Trip
meet our Local Insider
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN A GUIDE?
WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT YOUR JOB?
It's the personal contact, the personal experiences. I love meeting people from all over the world... I really like getting to know everyone and feeling like I'm traveling with a group of friends.
WHAT DESTINATION IS ON YOUR TRAVEL BUCKET-LIST?
I have so many places on my list, but I would really lobe to go to Africa. I consider myself an “adventure girl” and Africa feels like the ULTIMATE adventure!
Every CULTURE TRIP Small-group adventure is led by a Local Insider just like Hanna.
KEEN TO EXPLORE THE WORLD?
Connect with like-minded people on our premium trips curated by local insiders and with care for the world
Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.