Whether you’re landing late, taking off early, or simply looking for a convenient base to explore the San Francisco peninsula, you’ll be comfortable in no time when you book one of the best hotels near the airport with Culture Trip.
The San Francisco peninsula, with its gleaming city situated at the northernmost tip, is vast and has natural scenery in abundance. There is a staggering number of rugged beaches, numerous state parks and large stands of coastal redwood trees to enjoy. The sheltered Half Moon Bay, halfway between the vast Santa Cruz beaches and Año Nuevo State Park in the south and Golden Gate Park in the north, is a good starting point for a coastal road trip. On the San Francisco Bay side of the peninsula is the San Francisco International Airport but also many delightful small communities worth exploring.
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.
You can’t get closer to SFO than the Grand Hyatt. Weary travelers can reenergize in the fitness center or yoga zone, and the Quail and Crane restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, so you can fuel up no matter what time your flight is. Step off the SFO Air train, straight into the lobby and be whisked straight to your room or suite.
Clean, contemporary yet comfortable aptly describes the Millwood Inn and Suites boutique hotel and its 34 rooms and suites. The location, in the town of Millbrae, is near San Francisco airport, the 101 Freeway, Interstate 280, BART metro and is perfectly suited for those who want access to downtown San Francisco and her neighbourhoods but also San Jose’s tech scene and Santa Cruz beaches. A hot European style buffet is served every morning with a state-of-the-art coffee and espresso machine on the premises for all your caffeine needs.
Located in San Bruno near San Francisco Airport, the Sonesta ES Suites not only have a superb location in a quiet neighbourhood but loads of amenities. You will want to lounge by the pool, try out the BBQ and even have a go at the fitness centre. But what is astonishing are the oversized suites. The 2 bedroom and 2 bathroom suites are 845 square feet (80 sqm), have a queen size bed and two double beds, and are enough to sleep 8 adults. Perfect for a family who need a quick stop before or after a flight.
This brand new hotel ticks all the boxes with excellent accommodation, pool, fitness centre and, perhaps most importantly, a fantastic location. Coffee in the lobby means you can put some spring in your step even before an early morning departure, and if your flight is slightly later, you might even have time to grab the complimentary breakfast.
This brightly coloured, fresh hotel is right smack in the birthplace of biotech and within walking distance of the Genentech campus. The suite accommodation is spacious, sleeping four adults and with a full-size kitchen. But it isn’t just techies that will enjoy this property and its location. Nature lovers will appreciate the proximity to San Bruno Mountain State Park or the nearby San Francisco Bay walking trail and with the metro on your doorstep, it is only minutes to all the great San Francisco neighbourhoods and attractions.
Base yourself away from the hustle and bustle of the city and, instead, right on the waterfront next to San Francisco Bay. The futuristic design of this excellent property makes it a bit of a destination in itself, but it is also a relaxing and soothing environment for any stay. The bonus is great views across the water and to San Francisco in the near distance, particularly spectacular when dining at the AC Lounge’s leafy landscaped outside patio.
Is privacy your top priority? This accommodation provides just that. Rather than being a traditional inn, it’s more akin to a collection of little luxury cabins. Pick from the Desert Studio, the Woods Suite, the City Suite or the Coastal Studio. Each is modern, glass lined with floor to ceiling windows, full of light, oozing with rustic features, plus each studio/suite is provided with a full kitchen, dining area and separate living zone. Perched on pylons, each property’s balcony has virtually uninterrupted views to the beach and over the water.
The Towneplace Suites in San Mateo are brilliantly located and only a 20-minute drive from the Pacific Coast’s Half Moon Bay and Hwy 1, the Cabrillo Hwy, worth following for stunning coastal scenery. It is only slightly further inland to Pacific Redwood groves including Purisima Creek Redwoods Preserve, Big Basin Redwoods State Park and the Portola Redwoods State Park. Otherwise, this property offers modern, stylish suite accommodation with full sized kitchens and also a communal dining room offering free breakfast. There are casual bistros and restaurants just around the corner from the property.
Roll off the runway and straight into happy hour at the Aloft’s WXYZ Bar to enjoy $2 off beer, wine and wings. This trendy hotel chain has expanded throughout the country and become popular with those who enjoy socialising as well as sleeping in style. Other amenities are an excellent indoor pool, large fitness centre and a spacious outdoor patio. But it is the stylish sleeping quarters that will appeal to many guests.
If retro is your thing, then this conveniently located hotel for public transport, only shouting distance from San Francisco Airport and also near the attractions of the city, is the perfect choice. The patio is a throwback to Spanish colonial style, while all the newly renovated rooms feature artwork by surrealist photographer Thomas Barbey. Be sure to book a deluxe room which features turntables for spinning a few vinyls while simultaneously enjoying your spacious balcony. One metro stop away is Burlingame which has excellent dining and shopping options.
Looking for somewhere different to stay in the city? Book into one of the best luxury hotels in San Francisco, or, if you’re travelling with a four-legged friend, opt instead for a top pet-friendly hotel. We know just the food, art and cultural tours to inspire your itinerary; don’t miss the best nearest beaches to San Francisco, either. Check out all the foods you must eat while here.
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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.