#2062 – 2017 Year End Trip (Part VII: More of LA)

ENGLISH

Posts in the 2017 Year End Trip series:
1. Introduction
2. Part I: Getting to California
3. Part II: A Tourist in San Francisco
4. Part III: Alcatraz and Yosemite
5. Part IV:ย The City of San Francisco
6. Part V: The City of Los Angeles
7. Part VI: Hollywood and Griffith
8. Part VII: More of LA
9. Part VIII: Back to Europe in Business Class

Downtown LA

While in LA, obviously I went to Downtown Los Angeles, arguably the “most modern” district of the big city. I went there twice, actually, both at around noon. My first visit was actually on the New Year’s Eve Day where the area around Grand Park was closed from traffic as it was being prepared for some New Year’s Eve events, which was somehow quite nice as it felt like a Car Free Day (Well, in a sense it actually was), haha. Now that I think about it, probably I should have stayed in Downtown LA instead of Hollywood, especially for the New Year’s Eve (See Part V). But well…

Grand Park

Anyway, I went to the Grand Park in Downtown LA, a nice big park stretching from the Los Angeles Music Hall to the Los Angeles City Hall. There were fountains and benches in the park, which also offered free wifi (haha); and so this was indeed a nice place to be under the Los Angeles’ amazing winter weather (See Part V). Nearby the park was the Walt Disney Concert Hall, which designed reminded me a lot of the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao. However, the building was closed when I was there…

The Walt Disney Concert Hall in LA

Not too far away from the Grand Park was Los Angeles’ Union Station, which (I assumed) was Los Angeles’ main railroad station. This station was located next to the Metro building, which outer layout was used in Star Trek: Voyager‘s episode: Future’s End (I probably really need to write a special post about this later ๐Ÿ˜› ). Anyway, while the station building was beautiful (and looked more like a church than a train station to me ๐Ÿ˜› ), it was surprisingly small for a main train station! I saw some of the trains there and most of them were operated by Metrolink with diesel locomotives.

Los Angeles’ Union Station with the Metro Building in the background.

Koreatown and Little Tokyo

While in Los Angeles, I decided to go to both the Koreatown and Little Tokyo, establishments which I thought were not as “common” anywhere in the world, at least when being compared to the Chinatown, haha.

I went to the Koreatown one afternoon after my brunch with the purpose of trying out Somi Somi which Arman recommended, haha. It turned out that I was too early as I arrived there at 11:45 while Somi Somi would just open at noon. Btw, I was surprised to see a Paris Baguette there! You know, Paris Baguette was a big bakery chain in South Korea; and so seeing one in LA reminded a lot of my trip to South Korea four years prior! I decided to go in and buy two beautiful pastries for the sake of nostalgia and also to kill some time before Somi Somi’s opening time, haha ๐Ÿ˜† .

A Paris Baguette in Los Angeles

Anyway, at noon I went upstairs to Somi-Somi; and I became their first customer today, haha. I ordered a taiyaki with Nutella filling and matcha soft cream with Oreo sprinkles. And indeed it was good!! The serving size was quite big though that it took me awhile to finish it, haha.

The delicious Somi Somi taiyaki

The Koreatown itself was not that much interesting for a tourist, in my opinion, as it felt like it was a business district, haha. I walked along the Wilshire Boulevard from Wilshire/Western to Wilshire/Vermont, which was quite a long but nice walk (thanks to the weather) and great to immediately burn off the calories from the taiyaki, haha.

Little Tokyo in Los Angeles

I also went to Little Tokyo which was nearby the Union Station. There was a Japanese Village Plaza which I found cool as the buildings there were in Japanese architecture. Btw, I actuallyย regretted that I went there when I was still full. There were several Japanese restaurants (including the ramen chain Hakata Ikkousha) which looked great!

Santa Monica

Santa Monica

While in Los Angeles, obviously I went to the famous Santa Monica beach; especially that it was relatively easy to reach with public transport with the new Metro Expo Line, haha.

Santa Monica selfie

The most famous attraction in Santa Monica was the Santa Monica Pier, which was a really big boardwalk with many stalls on it, and actually real attractions (like a roller coaster, merry-go-around, etc). I went there on a Saturday so it probably wasn’t surprising that it was very crowded. There were several restaurants on the boardwalk. I actually wanted to try one out (the Bubba Gump), but it looked too busy today, haha.

Hot Dog on a Stick in Santa Monica

And so I went to the sidewalk, which was also very interesting. The original Hot Dog an a Stick stall was located there. I decided to try out one serving, which was delicious!ย Nearby the stall was the original Muscle Beach. The beach lived up to its name, though, as the reason for the name was because it was basically a public gym with many bodybuilding equipments! And not just the equipments, people actually used them even today when the outdoor temperature was quite cold! Haha…

The original Muscle Beach in Santa Monica

From the Muscle Beach, I felt quite hungry as it was late afternoon already. So I went back to the Ocean Avenue and had lunch at a taco restaurant. I decided to order a lobster taco with sangria because why not, haha ๐Ÿ˜† . And indeed it was delicious!

Three lobster tacos and sangria

Santa Monica was more than just the beach and the pier, btw. The 3rd Street Promenade in Downtown Santa Monica was also very interesting. It was a promenade exclusively for pedestrians with many shops, cafes, and street performers. I actually stumbled upon it by accident as I was walking back from the beach to the metro station. I decided to enter the Santa Monica Place which was one end of the promenade because I had the time anyway. And I am really glad that I did.

And so in conclusion, somehow I felt like Santa Monica was similar to Scheveningen in Den Haag! ๐Ÿ˜€

TO BE CONTINUED…

BAHASA INDONESIA

Posting-posting dalam seri 2017 Year End Trip:
1. Introduction
2. Part I: Getting to California
3. Part II: A Tourist in San Francisco
4. Part III: Alcatraz and Yosemite
5. Part IV:ย The City of San Francisco
6. Part V: The City of Los Angeles
7. Part VI: Hollywood and Griffith
8. Part VII: More of LA
9. Part VIII: Back to Europe in Business Class

Downtown LA

Selagi di LA, jelas aku pergi ke Downtown Los Angeles yang mana mungkin adalah distrik “paling modern” dari kota besar ini. Aku pergi kesana dua kali, btw, dan keduanya adalah di siang hari. Kunjungan pertamaku adalah di hari malam Tahun Baru dimana area di sekitar Grand Park ditutup dari lalu lintas karena sedang dipersiapkan untuk beberapa acara Malam Tahun Baru. Ya rasanya seperti kayak Car Free Day gitu deh (Hmm, nggak cuma “kayak” sih tapi “memang” ya, haha). Kalau dipikir-pikir lagi sekarang, mungkin seharusnya aku menginap di Downtown LA ya bukannya Hollywood, terutama berkaitan dengan Malam Tahun Baru (baca bagian V). Ah, ya sudah lah…

Grand Park

Anyway, aku pergi ke Grand Park di Downtown LA, sebuah taman besar yang memanjang dari Los Angeles Music Hall ke Balai Kota Los Angeles. Ada beberapa air mancur dan bangku-bangku di tamannya, yang juga menyediakan wifi gratis loh (haha); jadi memang taman ini adalah tempat yang asyik apalagi dengan cuaca musim dingin Los Angeles yang seperti itu (baca bagian V). Di dekat tamannya berdiri Walt Disney Concert Hall, yang mana disainnya amat mengingatkanku denganย Museum Guggenheim di Bilbao. Tapi, gedungnya sedang ditutup ketika aku di sana…

Walt Disney Concert Hall di LA

Tidak terlalu jauh dari Grand Park, berdiri Stasiun Union-nya Los Angeles, yang mana (aku asumsikan) adalah stasiun kereta api utamanya Los Angeles. Stasiunnya berlokasi di samping gedung Metro, yang mana eksteriornya digunakan di episodeย Future’s End-nya Star Trek: Voyagerย (Sepertinya aku perlu deh nanti menulis posting khusus untuk ini ๐Ÿ˜› ). Anyway, gedung stasiunnya sendiri indah kok (dan lebih nampak seperti gereja sih daripada stasiun kereta untukku, haha ๐Ÿ˜› ), tetapi ternyata berukuran cenderung kecil untuk ukuran stasiun kereta utama! Aku juga melihat beberapa kereta di sana yang kebanyakan dioperasikan oleh Metrolink dengan lokomotif-lokomotif diesel.

Stasiun Union di Los Angeles dengan gedung Metro di latar belakangnya.

Koreatown dan Little Tokyo

Selagi di Los Angeles, aku juga mengunjungi Koreatown dan Little Tokyo, sebuah area yang aku rasa nggak banyak ada dimana-mana kan ya, setidaknya jika dibandingkan dengan Chinatown, haha.

Aku pergi ke Koreatown di siang hari setelah brunch dengan tujuan mencoba Somi Somi yangย direkomendasikan Arman, haha. Ternyata waktu itu aku terlalu awal karena aku tiba jam 11:45 sementara Somi Somi-nya baru buka jam 12. Di sana aku dikejutkan dengan keberadaan Paris Baguette! Tahu kan, Paris Baguette adalah jaringan toko roti yang besar banget di Korea Selatan; jadi melihat cabangnya di LA mengingatkanku perjalananku ke Korea Selatan empat tahun sebelumnya! Aku memutuskan untuk membeli dua potong roti di sana untuk menunggu jam bukanya Somi Somi sekalian bernostalgia, haha ๐Ÿ˜† .

Paris Baguette di Los Angeles

Anyway, kemudian jam 12 aku naik ke atas menuju Somi Somi; dan aku adalah pelanggan pertama mereka hari itu, haha. Aku mencoba taiyaki dengan isi Nutella dan soft cream rasa matcha dengan taburan Oreo. Dan rasanya memang enak lho!! Ukurannya agak besar juga sih sehingga aku membutuhkan waktu lama untuk menghabiskannya, haha.

Taiyaki Somi Somi yang enak banget

Koreatown-nya sendiri nggak terlalu menarik sih bagi turis, menurutku ya, karena sepertinya adalah area perkantoran, haha. Aku berjalan-kaki di sepanjang Wilshire Boulevard dari Wilshire/Western ke Wilshire/Vermont, yang mana cukup jauh tetapi enak kok jalannya (berkat cuacanya yang memang nyaman) dan adalah kegiatan yang bagus dan menyehatkan kan untuk langsung membakar kalori dari taiyaki-nya, haha.

Little Tokyo di Los Angeles

Aku juga pergi ke Little Tokyo yang lokasinya tidak jauh dari Stasiun Union. Di sana ada Japanese Village Plaza yang mana cukup keren karena bangunan-bangunannya berarsitektur Jepang. Btw, aku sedikit menyesal nih aku kesana ketika sedang tidak lapar. Ternyata di sana ada beberapa rumah makan Jepang yang nampak menarik lho (termasuk jaringan mie ramen Hakata Ikkousha)!

Santa Monica

Santa Monica

Selagi di Los Angeles, jelas dong aku juga pergi ke Santa Monica yang terkenal itu; terutama juga karena cukup mudah untuk pergi kesana dengan memanfaatkan kereta Metro jalur Expo, haha.

Santa Monica selfie

Atraksi paling terkenal di Santai Monica adalah Santa Monica Pier-nya, yang mana adalah dermaga kayu besar dengan banyak kedai-kedai di atasnya, dan juga atraksi-atraksi beneran (seperti roller coaster, ferris wheel, carousel, dll). Waktu itu adalah hari Sabtu sehingga mungkin tidak mengherankan tempatnya ramai banget. Ada beberapa restoran juga di dermaganya. Sebenarnya aku ingin mencoba salah satunya sih (Bubba Gump), tetapi restorannya ramai banget hari ini, haha.

Hot Dog on a Stick di Santa Monica

Dan jadilah aku pergi ke area sidewalk-nya, yang mana juga menarik. Kedai Hot Dog an a Stick yang asli (yang pertama) juga berada di sana. Aku iseng membeli satu porsi hot dog-nya, yang mana ternyata memang enak! Di dekat kedainya terdapat Pantai Otot (Muscle Beach). Ternyata memang pantainya ini sesuai banget dengan namanya lho, karena alasan nama pantainya begini adalah karena pada dasarnya pantainya berupa gym umum/terbuka gitu dengan banyak alat-alat untuk fitness! Dan nggak cuma alat-alatnya doang, banyak banget pengunjung yang menggunakannya padahal hari itu cuaca di luar sedang lumayan dingin! Haha…

Muscle Beach yang asli di Santa Monica

Dari Muscle Beach, aku merasa lumayan lapar karena hari sudah mulai memasuki sore. Jadilah aku berjalan kembali ke Ocean Avenue dan makan siang di sebuah restoran taco. Aku memesan taco lobster dengan sangria, haha ๐Ÿ˜† . Dan rasanya juga enak!

Tiga buah taco lobster dan sangria

Santa Monica ternyata bukan hanya sekedar pantai dan dermaganya saja. Di Downtown Santa Monica juga terdapat 3rd Street Promenade yang mana sangat menarik. Tempat ini adalah jalan khusus untuk pejalan-kaki dengan banyak toko-toko, kafe, dan juga street performers. Sebenarnya hanya kebetulan banget saja aku bisa mampir di sana. Waktu itu aku sedang berjalan kembali ke stasiun metro dari arah pantai. Aku memutuskan untuk mampir di Santa Monica Place, sebuah mall kecil gitu, yang ternyata merupakan satu ujung dari promenade-nya. Dan aku lega aku memutuskan untuk mampir karena aku jadi melihat promenade yang seru ini.

Jadi kesimpulannya, kalau dipikir-pikir lagi Santa Monica ini lumayan mirip seperti Scheveningen di Den Haag! ๐Ÿ˜€

BERSAMBUNG…

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#2060 – 2017 Year End Trip (Part VI: Hollywood and Griffith)

ENGLISH

Posts in the 2017 Year End Trip series:
1. Introduction
2. Part I: Getting to California
3. Part II: A Tourist in San Francisco
4. Part III: Alcatraz and Yosemite
5. Part IV:ย The City of San Francisco
6. Part V: The City of Los Angeles
7. Part VI: Hollywood and Griffith
8. Part VII: More of LA
9. Part VIII: Back to Europe in Business Class

Hollywood

The Hollywood Boulevard

Arguably the most famous district of Los Angeles, I stayed at a motel in Hollywood so I had quite some time to explore it, haha. The “main” area of Hollywood was the long Hollywood Boulevard which middle strecth (between its intersection with Highland and Vine street, approximately) was the area where the famous Hollywood Walk of Fame was located. Unsurprisingly, this was the busiest (with tourists) area as well, haha ๐Ÿ˜› .

The Hollywood Walk of Fame was indeed really cool with a lot of stars of Hollywood names! Many I did not know but I recognized a lot of others as well! Btw, I just realized that not only people could make their way to the stars, but also some fictional characters like Bugs Bunny, Mickey Mouse, and Shrek! Haha ๐Ÿ˜†

Neil Patrick Harris’ star

Bugs Bunny’s star

There were a lot of shops, restaurants, cafes, museums, and tour operators along the boulevard. So indeed it was very lively! There were also a lot of people dressed up in (Hollywood) costumes (like Superman, Batman, Wolverine, Wonder Woman, Captain America, etc) whom you could take a photo with (but I assumed in exchange for money). Also there were some men handing out CDs, which I ignored because it looked so shady and I felt like there was a high possibility it could be a scam, haha.

People in costumes

The Hollywood Sign

The Hollywood sign was located on the Hollywood hill, which was not anywhere close to the Hollywood Boulevard at all, haha ๐Ÿ˜† . From my research prior to the trip, I saw a suggestion to look at the sign from the Griffith Observatory. Griffith Observatory was in my list to visit anyway, so I definitely gave it a go, haha…

The Hollywood sign from Griffith Observatory

As it turned out, Griffith Observatory was also still too far away from the sign. I mean, for the photo above I needed to zoom in my camera, haha. Unfortunately, this meant it was impossible to get a good self picture with the sign from Griffith.

Unfortunately, I did not get any closer to the sign than this one. I found it rather tricky and difficult to get closer to it (See Part V); and so I guess this sign is for the next time I am around in Los Angeles then, haha…

Anyway, speaking of the Griffith Observatory …

Griffith Observatory

At the Griffith Observatory

The Griffith Observatory was a very famous site in Los Angeles, and it has been used as a setting of many movies and TV series. While perhaps most famous recently as a setting ofย La La Land, I was also very eager to go there because it was used as a setting in a Star Trek: Voyager‘s episode: Future’s End (I actually did a mini Future’s End Tour in Los Angeles. Perhaps I will write about it in a later post ๐Ÿ˜› ).

I really liked this observatory that I actually went twice there! Haha ๐Ÿ˜† . Both times I used the LADOT bus service from Sunset/Vermont Metro station, which only cost $0.50 one way and free wifi was provided!

The Griffith Observatory

Anyway, my first visit was in the evening. And indeed it was very beautiful, but also very crowded, haha ๐Ÿ˜† . There was a balcony behind the observatory overlooking the city of Los Angeles. The view was especially magnicient especially with those evening lights!

The Griffith Observatory and Los Angeles

Of course I also entered the observatory, which was free of charge (Except if you wanted to see the program in the Samuel Oschin Planetarium)! There were really cool (space-related, obviously) exhibits inside which I thoroughly enjoyed. I could measure my weight in other extraterrestial objects (I was less than 4.5 kg in Pluto, haha ๐Ÿ˜› ) and there were even rocks originating from meteorites! It was so cool that those rocks that were sitting in front of my eyes were not from Earth!

These rocks did not originate from Earth!

What I found amazing was that people could also use the telescope at the Observatory for FREE!! But exactly because it was for free, of course the telescope became hugely popular and so a really, really, really long line of people wanting to try it out was formed, especially that the sky was clear tonight, haha ๐Ÿ˜† . I decided to pass.

The sundial at Griffith Observatory

My second visit was in the afternoon because, obviously, I would like to see the Observatory under the daylight too! (Beside, Star Trek: Voyager’s Future’s End scene at Griffith took place in an afternoon, haha ๐Ÿ˜† ). Again, it was quite a busy afternoon at the observatory as well. Visiting it in the afternoon actually provided me the opportunity to see out more stuffs at display there, though, for instance the sundial just behind the Astronomers Monument.

TO BE CONTINUED…

BAHASA INDONESIA

Posting-posting dalam seri 2017 Year End Trip:
1. Introduction
2. Part I: Getting to California
3. Part II: A Tourist in San Francisco
4. Part III: Alcatraz and Yosemite
5. Part IV:ย The City of San Francisco
6. Part V: The City of Los Angeles
7. Part VI: Hollywood and Griffith
8. Part VII: More of LA
9. Part VIII: Back to Europe in Business Class

Hollywood

Hollywood Boulevard

Mungkin adalah distrik paling terkenal di Los Angeles, aku menginap di sebuah motel di Hollywood sehingga aku lumayan memiliki banyak kesempatan untuk menjelajahinya, haha. Area “utama”-nya Hollywood berada di sepanjang Hollywood Boulevard yang panjang itu yang mana bagian tengahnya (di antara perempatan dengan Jalan Highland dan Vine, kurang lebih) adalah area Hollywood Walk of Fame yang terkenal banget itu. Tak mengherankan, area ini juga area yang paling ramai (dengan turis), haha ๐Ÿ˜› .

Hollywood Walk of Fame memang keren banget lho soalnya dipenuhi dengan nama-nama Hollywood! Banyak sih yang aku nggak tahu (haha) tetapi aku mengenali lumayan banyak juga! Btw, aku baru tahu bahwa ternyata yang namanya bisa dituliskan di sana bukan hanya orang saja loh, tetapi juga beberapa karakter fiksional seperti Bugs Bunny, Mickey Mouse, dan Shrek! Haha ๐Ÿ˜†

Bintangnya Neil Patrick Harris

Bintangnya Bugs Bunny

Ada banyak toko, restoran, cafe, museum, dan operator tur di sepanjang boulevard-nya. Jadi memang areanya terasa hidup sekali! Banyak juga orang-orang yang mengenakan kostum (ala Hollywood), seperti Superman, Batman, Wolverine, Wonder Woman, Captain America, dll gitu lah yang mana kita bisa foto-foto bersama (tetapi jelas kayaknya harus bayar). Ada pula beberapa orang yang membagi-bagikan CD, yang mana tidak aku hiraukan karena nampak mencurigakan dan aku merasa kok kayaknya kemungkinannya akan scam besar gitu, haha.

Orang-orang dengan kostum

Tanda Tulisan Hollywood

Tanda Tulisan Hollywood berada di Bukit Hollywood, yang mana lokasinya jauh dari Hollywood Boulevard, haha ๐Ÿ˜† . Dari risetku sebelum perjalanan ini, aku mendapatkan info untuk melihat tandanya dari Griffith Observatory. Karena toh Griffith Observatory juga berada dalam daftar untuk aku kunjungi, ya jelas aku ke sana lah ya, haha…

Tanda tulisan Hollywood dari Griffith Observatory

Ternyata, Griffith Observatory pun masih terlalu jauh dari tandanya. Maksudku, fotoku di atas itu aku ambil dengan menggunakan fiturย zoom-inย di kameraku loh. Sayangnya, ini berarti tidak mungkin juga untuk kita mendapatkan foto bersama tandanya dari Griffith.

Sayangnya, aku tidak sempat untuk pergi ke tempat lain yang lebih dekat dengan tandanya dari ini. Aku merasa transportasinya agak ribet dan sulit untuk ke sana (Baca Bagian V); dan jadi aku rasa tanda ini adalah untuk perjalananku selanjutnya ke Los Angeles dah, haha…

Anyway, ngomongin Griffith Observatory …

Griffith Observatory

Di Griffith Observatory

Griffith Observatory adalah tempat yang terkenal di Los Angeles, dan tempat ini sering digunakan untuk syuting film atau acara TV Hollywood gitu. Walaupun mungkin akhir-akhir paling terkenal karena digunakan sebagai salah satu setting-nyaย La La Land, aku juga amat bersemangat untuk pergi ke sana karena tempat ini digunakan sebagai salah satu setting dari episodeย Future’s End-nya Star Trek: Voyagerย (Sebenarnya aku sempat pergi dalam petualangan mini Future’s End di Los Angeles. Mungkin ini akan aku ceritakan nanti-nanti ๐Ÿ˜› ).

Aku amat menyukai observatorium ini sampai-sampai aku pergi dua kali loh ke sana! Haha ๐Ÿ˜† . Di keduanya aku menggunakan layanan bus LADOT dari stasiun Metro Sunset/Vermont, yang mana harga tiketnya hanyalah $0.50 sekali jalan dan busnya dilengkapi dengan wifi gratis!

Griffith Observatory

Anyway, kunjungan pertamaku adalah di malam hari. Dan memang tempatnya kece banget loh, tetapi juga ramai, haha ๐Ÿ˜† . Ada balkon di bagian belakang observatoriumnya yang menghadap ke arah kota Los Angeles. Pemandangannya keren banget terutama dengan lampu-lampunya!

Griffith Observatory dan Los Angeles

Tentu saja aku juga masuk ke dalam observatoriumnya, yang mana tidak dikenakan biaya (Kecuali kalau mau menonton acara di Planetarium Samuel Oschin)! Ada beberapa pameran (yang berhubungan dengan luar angkasa, tentunya) di dalamnya yang sangat aku nikmati. Aku bisa mengukur berat badanku di beberapa obyek luar angkasa (Berat badanku di Pluto bahkan nggak sampai 4,5 kg loh, haha ๐Ÿ˜› ) dan ada juga beberapa batu dari meteorit! Keren aja bagiku melihat batu-batu di depan mataku sendiri yang mana asalnya bukan dari planet Bumi!

Batu-batu ini tidak berasal dari Bumi loh!

Yang aku rasa juga menarik banget adalah pengunjung bisa menggunakan teleskop di observatoriumnya dengan GRATIS!! Tetapi justru karena gratis ini, sebagai akibatnya teleskopnya, yang pada dasarnya memang sudah populer banget, menjadi ramai banget yang mana antrian untuk menggunakannya juga sangat amat panjang sekali, apalagi malam ini langit juga sedang cerah, haha ๐Ÿ˜† . Ya sudah deh aku memutuskan untuk melewatkannya malam ini.

Jam matahari di Griffith Observatory

Kunjungan kedua kesanaku adalah di siang hari, karena jelas aku ingin melihat observatoriumnya di bawah sinar matahari juga! (Di samping itu, adegannya Satr Trek: Voyager Future’s End di sana juga terjadi di siang hari sih, haha ๐Ÿ˜† ). Lagi, siang itu observatoriumnya sangat sibuk. Mengunjunginya di siang hari juga seru karena aku bisa menggunakan beberapa benda di sana yang hanya bisa digunakan di siang hari, misalnya jam matahari di sebelah Monumen Astronomers.

BERSAMBUNG…

#2058 – 2017 Year End Trip (Part V: The City of Los Angeles)

ENGLISH

Posts in the 2017 Year End Trip series:
1. Introduction
2. Part I: Getting to California
3. Part II: A Tourist in San Francisco
4. Part III: Alcatraz and Yosemite
5. Part IV:ย The City of San Francisco
6. Part V: The City of Los Angeles
7. Part VI: Hollywood and Griffith
8. Part VII: More of LA
9. Part VIII: Back to Europe in Business Class

Getting to Los Angeles


Flight: Delta DL4837 operated by SkyWest
Equipment: Embraer ERJ175 reg N257SY
ATD: 16:59 PST (Runway 01L of SFO)
ATA: 17:55 PST (Runway 24R of LAX)

Obviously I chose to fly to get to Los Angeles; and this flight from San Francisco was my 67th (lol) and last flight of 2017. It would be a Delta’s “Delta Shuttle” flight under their regional Delta Connection brand operated by SkyWest Airlines, haha ๐Ÿ˜† .

A SkyWest’s Embraer ERJ175 reg N257SY in Delta Connection livery

I arrived really early at San Francisco International Airport. After checking in my luggage and clearing the security, I went to the Delta Sky Club Lounge. However, I was told that my SkyTeam Elite Plus status did not grant me complimentary access to the lounge because I wasn’t connecting to/from an international SkyTeam flight today. Damn, this was indeed true and I forgot this small fine print! Oh well…

Delta Sky Club at SFO

Anyway, as per the standard in America, I was on the list of the complimentary upgrade. However, I was only 8th on the free upgrade list to First Class (note: “First Class” is the American term for business class in a domestic flight) but was 1st on the free upgrade list to Delta Comfort+. So unsurprisingly I did not clear the First Class upgrade but I got the Delta Comfort+ one.

Impressive legroom in Delta Comfort+!

Long story short, the flight today would be operated with an Embraer ERJ175 reg N257SY. I boarded the plane and sat on my Delta Comfort+ 7A seat, which legroom was really impressive!ย ๐Ÿ˜ฎ The flight took off from runway 01L and then turned southeast towards Los Angeles. The view was beautiful because the flight was during dusk and sunset.

The complimentary Delta Shuttle snack service

The snack service was distributed about a third into the flight. I was actually impressed with the service, btw, which consisted of tasty whole grain crackers with dip, cheese, fresh fruit and vegetables; it was healthy! Apparently this was the “Delta Shuttle” level of service, which unfortunately was discontinued as per 4 January 2018ย from this route.

Anyway, the approach to Los Angeles International Airport was super cool because the plane flew above the city of Los Angeles, providing amazing view of the city, including Downtown Los Angeles with all the skyscrapers!ย ๐Ÿ˜ย At 5:55 PM, we landed at runway 24R of LAX. Here is the landing video:

Winter in LA

Anyway, I was in LA during the winter. And it turned out that LA winter climate was like this:

A winter day in LA

๐Ÿ˜ฎย Yes, 28ยฐC and sunny. What kind of winter is this??? ๐Ÿ˜…ย In the Netherlands, this would have been called a rare good summer day! Lol ๐Ÿ˜† .

On my first day in LA, this really caught me by surprise and made me felt like I dressed too much. I had to go back to the hotel to leave some of my clothes behind, because it was becoming really hot! Haha ๐Ÿ˜† . It was nice though to be able to wear my summer outfit in California in the middle of “winter” ๐Ÿ˜› .

One layer of clothes in the middle of “winter” in LA.

Getting Around

Anyway, just like in San Francisco, I tried to get around only by using public transportation in LA. To do this, I bought the Tap Card with a week pass which could be used at any Metro rides.

A TAP card

Unlike San Francisco, Los Angeles was actually huge! Size-wise, it was more than ten times larger than SF. And so you would probably think that public transportation in LA would be more advanced. However as it turned out, it was actually the opposite and was seriously lacking!

There were a few subway/light rail lines but I felt like the frequency was way too low. For instance, the frequency of the red line train was often only once in about every fifteen minutes! To be fair each train set was long hence the high capacity; but considering this was an urban public transport, I would still go for frequency than capacity.

The low subway frequency in LA

To me this was rather annoying that I felt like I spent a lot of time just transporting from one place to another. From this trip point of view, this wasn’t much of a problem because I had so many days in LA anyway. But if I had had much less time, or if I lived in LA, there was practically almost no incentive for me to take the public transport.

This was also one of the (many) things discussed during lunch withย Armanย andย Christa, where we agreed that owning a car was a must for those who lived in LA, haha.

Bloggers Gathering

A bloggers meetup in Hollywood!!

Speaking of meeting up with Arman and Christa, we decided to meet at a Thai restaurant in Hollywood (because I stayed in Hollywood) on New Year’s day for lunch. Arman came with Esther, Andrew, and Emma; and Christa came with R. We met at around noon and talked and talked for hours, and suddenly it was almost 3 PM already! Time flew by really fast that Emma felt left out. We are so sorry Emma!!ย ๐Ÿ˜ฃย Btw, Andrew and Emma spoke great Indonesian, btw! ๐Ÿ˜€ Anyway, indeed it was so much fun!! ๐Ÿ™‚

New Year’s Eve

New Year’s Eve in Hollywood

Speaking of Hollywood, one would think that the New Year’s Eve would be awesome and super fun there. This was one of the reasons why I was staying there, haha. But it turned out to be wrong! There were only few fireworks and even at the new year’s time (12 o’clock midnight), people only honked their cars but that was all about it! Haha ๐Ÿ˜† . Suffice to say I felt rather “deflated”, haha…

The Food

Speaking of the food, just like in San Francisco, LA had very wide varieties of food to choose from. As it turned out, Hollywood was located quite close to the Thai Town so there were a lot of Thai restaurants there, haha. I tried a few of those and the best one was indeed the Palms Thai restaurant where we had the bloggers gathering (The gathering was so much fun that I forgot to take pictures of the food, haha).

In-N-Out’s Double-Double burger

Anyway, one meal that definitely impressed me was In-N-Out, that was actually a burger joint (There were actually a few In-N-Outs in San Francisco too but I didn’t have the chance to go there while in SF). I got a few independent recommendations to really try it and so I did in LA. I tried their Double-Double burger and indeed it was great. Not only the taste, but also the value of money! Haha ๐Ÿ˜† . It was so famous that it was very busy the time I was there, which arguably was not the peak hours. So I agree that In-N-Out is a much whenever you are in California, hahaha ๐Ÿ˜† .

TO BE CONTINUED…

BAHASA INDONESIA

Posting-posting dalam seri 2017 Year End Trip:
1. Introduction
2. Part I: Getting to California
3. Part II: A Tourist in San Francisco
4. Part III: Alcatraz and Yosemite
5. Part IV:ย The City of San Francisco
6. Part V: The City of Los Angeles
7. Part VI: Hollywood and Griffith
8. Part VII: More of LA
9. Part VIII: Back to Europe in Business Class

Ke Los Angeles


Penerbangan: Delta DL4837 dioperasikan oleh SkyWest
Pesawat: Embraer ERJ175 reg N257SY
ATD: 16:59 PST (Runway 01L of SFO)
ATA: 17:55 PST (Runway 24R of LAX)

Jelas dong ya aku memilih untuk naik pesawat untuk pergi ke Los Angeles; dan penerbangan dari San Francisco ini adalah penerbangan ke-67ku (lol) dan yang terakhir di tahun 2017. Penerbangan ini adalah penerbangan “Delta Shuttle”-nya Delta dengan brand regional Delta Connection-nya yang dioperasikan oleh SkyWest Airlines, haha ๐Ÿ˜† .

Sebuah Embraer ERJ175 rego N257SY milik SkyWest dengan cat Delta Connection

Aku tiba awal banget di Bandara Internasional San Francisco. Setelah memasukkan bagasi dan melewati pemeriksaan sekuriti, aku pergi ke Lounge Delta Sky Club. Namun, aku diberi-tahu bahwa status SkyTeam Elite Plus-ku tidak memberikan akses komplimen ke lounge-nya karena hari ini penerbanganku tidak terkoneksi ke/dari sebuah penerbangan internasionalnya SkyTeam. Ah sial, memang begini sih aturan mainnya Deltaย dan aku lupa syarat dan ketentuan kecil ini! Ya sudah deh…

Delta Sky Club di SFO

Anyway, seperti sebagaimana standar penerbangan di Amerika, aku masuk dalam daftar untuk di-upgrade gratis di penerbanganku ini. Namun, aku berada di urutan ke-8 untuk upgrade gratis ke First Class (baca: “First Class” adalah istilah Amerika untuk kelas bisnis di penerbangan domestik) tetapi berada di urutan pertama untuk upgrade gratis ke Delta Comfort+. Jadi tidak mengherankan ketika pada akhirnya aku tidak mendapatkan upgrade ke First Class tetapi mendapatkan upgrade ke Delta Comfort+.

Legroom di Delta Comfort+ impresif banget lho!

Singkat cerita, penerbangan hari ini akan dioperasikan dengan Embraer ERJ175 dengan rego N257SY. Aku menaiki pesawatku dan duduk di kursi Delta Comfort+ 7A, yang mana legroom-nya impresif sekali! ๐Ÿ˜ฎ Pesawat kemudian lepas landas dari landasan pacu 01L dan kemudian berputar menuju Los Angeles. Pemandangan sepanjang penerbangan keren loh soalnya bertepatan dengan waktu senja dan matahari terbenam.

Layanan snack komplimen di penerbangan Delta Shuttle

Layanan snack dibagikan kira-kira setelah sepertiga perjalanan. Aku sungguh terkesan dengan layanan snack-nya, btw, yang terdiri atas whole grain crackers yang enak banget dengan saus cocolan, keju, dan irisan buah dan sayuran segar; sehat banget ya snack-nya! Nah, ternyata begini lah standar pelayanan produk “Delta Shuttle”-nya Delta, yang mana sayangnya telahย diberhentikan per 4 Januari 2018ย di rute ini.

Anyway, approachย menuju Bandara Internasional Los Angeles keren banget loh soalnya pesawatnya terbang tepat di atas Los Angeles dulu, sehingga pemandangannya kece cetar banget, termasuk Downtown Los Angeles dengan menara-menaranya itu!ย ๐Ÿ˜ย Jam 5:55 sore, pesawat mendarat di landasan pacu 24R Bandara LAX. Berikut ini video pendaratannya:

Musim dingin di LA

Anyway, jadi ceritanya ini aku di LA di musim dingin kan. Dan ternyata cuaca musim dingin di LA itu kayak gini:

Musim dingin di LA

๐Ÿ˜ฎ Iya dong ya, itu 28ยฐC dan matahari bersinar dengan riangnya. Nah, musim dingin macam apa ini kan ya???ย ๐Ÿ˜…ย Di Belanda, cuaca kayak begini mah cuaca yang baik di musim panas yang munculnya pun jarang! Huahaha ๐Ÿ˜† .

Di hari pertamaku di LA, ini sungguh mengagetkanku sampai-sampai aku merasa saltum karena memakai pakaian terlalu banyak. Sampai-sampai aku memutuskan untuk pulang ke hotel untuk melepas baju, soalnya bener-bener jadi kepanasan banget! Haha ๐Ÿ˜† . Eh tapi asyik sih sebenarnya bisa memakai pakaian ala musim panas di California di “musim dingin” ๐Ÿ˜› .

Pakai baju satu lapis aja loh di tengah-tengah “musim dingin” di LA.

Berkeliling Kota

Anyway, seperti di San Francisco, aku juga berusaha untuk selalu menggunakan transportasi umum di LA. Untuk ini, aku membeli Tap Card dengan week pass yang bisa digunakan di semua kendaraan yang dioperasikan oleh Metro.

Sebuah TAP card

Tidak seperti San Francisco, Los Angeles adalah kota yang besar banget! Secara ukuran, luas kotanya lebih dari sepuluh kali lipatnya SF loh. Jadi wajar dong ya kalau aku kira sistem transportasi umumnya LA bakal lebih maju. Namun, ternyata kenyataannya adalah sebaliknya dan justru bisa dibilang sistemnya sangat amat kurang banget!

Memang ada beberapa jalur subway/light rail tetapi bagiku frekuensi operasi keretanya terlalu jarang. Misalnya saja, frekuensi kereta jalur merah seringnya adalah setiap lima belas menit dong! Memang sih rangkaian keretanya panjang sehingga kapasitasnya juga banyak, tetapi menurutku sih untuk transportasi umum dalam kota begini frekuensi lebih penting ya.

Frekuensi subway yang jarang di LA

Untukku ini sedikit menyebalkan karena mengakibatkan banyak waktuku yang mesti kuhabiskan di jalan. Dari sudut pandang murni perjalanan ini, ini bukan lah masalah besar sih karena kebetulan aku memang mengalokasikan waktu yang cukup lama di LA. Tapi andaikata waktuku di LA lebih singkat, atau jika aku tinggal di LA, rasanya kecil banget insentif untukku menggunakan transportasi umum.

Ini juga adalah salah satu (dari banyaaak) hal yang kami diskusikan ketika kopdar sambil makan siang bersama Armanย danย Christa, dimana kami setuju bahwa punya mobil itu wajib banget kalau tinggal di LA, haha.

Kopdar

Kopdar di Hollywood!!

Ngomongin kopdaran dengan Arman dan Christa, kami memutuskan untuk bertemu di sebuah restoran Thailand di Hollywood (soalnya aku menginap di Hollywood) di Hari Tahun Baru. Arman datang bersama Esther, Andrew, dan Emma; dan Christa datang bersama R. Kami bertemu kira-kira jam 12 siang dan ngobrol dan ngobrol terus dengan seru. Bahkan sampai berjam-jam, dimana tiba-tiba sudah jam 3 sore aja dong! Haha. Saking nggak terasanya waktu berjalan, Emma sampai merasa left out. Aduh, sorry banget ya Emma!! ๐Ÿ˜ฃย Btw, Andrew dan Emma itu bahasa Indonesianya lancar lho! ๐Ÿ˜€ Anyway, kopdarnya seru banget lah!! ๐Ÿ™‚

Malam Tahun Baru

Malam Tahun Baru di Hollywood

Ngomongin Hollywood, jelas dong aku kira Malam Tahun Baruan disana pasti seru banget kan ya. Inilah salah satu alasan mengapa aku menginap di daerah sana. Dan ternyataa, aku salah besar dong! Kembang apinya cuma ada sedikit banget dan bahkan di saat pergantian tahun, yang terjadi adalah cuma mobil-mobil di jalan pada membunyikan klaksonnya doang! Ya udah gitu aja! Haha ๐Ÿ˜† . Ya bisa dibilang aku sedikit merasa kena “zonk” deh ini, haha…

Makanannya

Ngomongin makanan, seperti San Francisco, LA memiliki varietas makanan yang luas sekali. Ternyata, Hollywood berlokasi dekat dengan Thai Town sehingga ada banyak restoran Thailand di sana, haha. Aku mencoba beberapa dan yang paling enak memang lah Restoran Palms Thai dimana kami kopdaran (Saking seru kopdarnya, aku kelupaan foto makanannya dong, haha).

In-N-Out’s Double-Double burger

Anyway, satu tempat makan yang sungguh membuatku terkesan adalah In-N-Out, yang mana adalah kedai burger gitu deh (Ada beberapa In-N-Out juga sih di San Francisco tetapi aku tidak sempat mencobanya). Kebetulan juga aku mendapatkan beberapa rekomendasi terpisah untuk makan di In-N-Out dan jadilah di LA aku cobain beneran. Aku memesan burger Double-Double mereka dan ternyata beneran enak banget loh. Nggak hanya dari segi rasa, tapi juga dari segi harga! Haha ๐Ÿ˜† . Saking terkenalnya, tempat makannya ramai banget lho ketika aku di sana padahal waktu itu pun bukan jam makan. Jadi aku setuju banget bahwa In-N-Out ini harus banget dicobain kalau misalnya pada pergi ke California, hahaha ๐Ÿ˜† .

BERSAMBUNG…

#2057 – Recapping Last Week

ENGLISH

Last week was, indeed, a unique week for me because I had … two separate trips within the week! Lol ๐Ÿ˜† .

I already mentioned that I was in Copenhagen in Denmark on Tuesday for the PhD defense of a good friend of mine. And of course this trip had to last until Wednesday because a reception and a party followed the defense which I definitely would not miss, haha.

Copenhagen, Denmark

And later on in the week, as my Instagram (@azilko) followers have known, I went on a weekend trip! And this time, I went to … Bologna in Italy! This weekend trip was one of the longer one where I departed on Friday, instead of Saturday, and went back to Amsterdam on Sunday. I chose to depart on Friday mainly because I found an interesting routing from Amsterdam to Bologna via Lyon on that day, haha ๐Ÿ˜› .

A tortellini bolognese with ragu in Bologna!

It was a coincidence that these two trips were so close to each other. I already planned my Bologna trip since months ago while I planned my Copenhagen trip just about three weeks ago, haha. I still got myself a return Air France/KLM ticket to Copenhagen (with a routing via Paris on the way back ๐Ÿ˜› ), even though it was not the cheapest flight ticket per se. However, the cheapest return flight (with Norwegian) would require me to stay an extra night in Copenhagen plus an extra half a day off of my holiday allowance. So I figured that all things considered, my trip would cost “less” in total if I bought the seemingly more expensive Air France/KLM ticket. And so as a bonus, I also got quite some miles from this ticket, haha. Anyway, so in the end here is the route map of the flights I did last week.

My routing last week. Created with gcmap.com

Work-wise, indeed it was an interesting week for me last week; because I only worked on Monday and Thursday! You see, I had a weekend, then a day of work (Monday), then two days of vacation, then a day of work (Thursday), then a “long” weekend! It indeed felt a little bit like I was taking two breaks from vacation for work! Lol ๐Ÿ˜†

To sum it up, it was indeed such a fun week. Here are some photos from the two trips as teasers:

BAHASA INDONESIA

Minggu lalu adalah minggu yang unik untukku karena aku … pergi dalam dua perjalanan yang berbeda dalam satu minggu! Hahaha ๐Ÿ˜† .

Sudah kusebutkan di sini bahwa aku berada di Kopenhagen di Denmark di hari Selasa untuk menghadiri sidang dan wisuda PhD (S3)-nya seorang teman baikku. Dan tentu saja perjalanan ini harus berlanjut sampai hari Rabu karena wisudanya diikuti dengan resepsi dan pesta yang mana jelas aku nggak mau lewatkan dong ya.

Kopenhagen, Denmark

Dan kemudian, seperti yang followers Instagramku (@azilko) ketahui, aku pergi dalam sebuah perjalanan akhir pekan! Dan kali ini, aku pergi ke … Bologna di Italia! Perjalanan akhir pekan ini tergolong yang cukup panjang karena aku berangkat di hari Jumat, bukannya Sabtu, dan kembali ke Amsterdam di hari Minggu. Aku memutuskan untuk berangkat di hari Jumat karena aku menemukan penerbangan yang rutenya unik dari Amsterdam ke Bologna, yaitu via Lyon hari itu, haha ๐Ÿ˜› .

Tortellini bolognese dengan ragu di Bologna!

Kebetulan banget dua perjalanan ini berlangsung dalam waktu yang berdekatan begini. Perjalanan ke Bologna sudah kurencanakan semenjak berbulan-bulan lalu sementara perjalananku ke Kopenhagen baru kurencanakan tiga minggu yang lalu, haha. Aku membeli tiket pp dengan Air France/KLM ke Kopenhagen (dengan rute via Paris di perjalanan kembalinya), walaupun tiket ini bukanlah tiket pesawat yang termurah. Namun dengan tiket yang termurah (dengan Norwegian), aku harus menginap semalam ekstra di Kopenhagen plus aku harus mengambil cuti setengah hari lebih panjang. Jadilah ketika semuanya aku hitung, total biaya perjalananku justru akan “lebih rendah” apabila aku membeli tiket pesawat Air France/KLM yang dari luarnya nampak lebih mahal ini, haha. Dan sebagai bonus, miles yang kudapat dari tiket ini juga tergolong banyak! Haha ๐Ÿ˜† . Ngomong-ngomong, pada akhirnya berikut ini deh peta rute penerbangan yang aku naiki minggu lalu.

Ruteku minggu lalu. Dibuat dengan gcmap.com

Dari segi kerjaan, minggu lalu menjadi minggu yang menarik untukku; karena aku hanya masuk kerja di hari Senin dan Kamis! Iya kan, weekend, kemudian aku masuk satu hari (Senin), lalu liburan dua hari, lalu masuk sehari (Kamis), lalu “long” weekend! Jadilah minggu lalu sedikit terasa seperti aku mengambil dua cuti dari liburan untuk bekerja! Huahaha ๐Ÿ˜†

Jadi sebagai kesimpulannya, minggu lalu memang adalah minggu yang amat seru bagiku. Di atas juga aku unggah beberapa foto sebagai teasers dari dua perjalanan ini.

#2055 – 2017 Year End Trip (Part IV: The City of San Francisco)

ENGLISH

Posts in the 2017 Year End Trip series:
1. Introduction
2. Part I: Getting to California
3. Part II: A Tourist in San Francisco
4. Part III: Alcatraz and Yosemite
5. Part IV:ย The City of San Francisco
6. Part V: The City of Los Angeles
7. Part VI: Hollywood and Griffith
8. Part VII: More of LA
9. Part VIII: Back to Europe in Business Class

San Francisco

San Francisco

Before the trip when I thought of San Francisco, I thought of a big city. Well, it turned that especially for American standard, this was wrong! Even Bandung was actually larger than San Francisco!

While this might sound positive in the sense that theoretically most part of the city was within walking distance, actually there was a third dimension to be considered here: elevation. San Francisco was very hilly, even there were hills in the city center (See, for instance, the Lombard Street in Part II). So to get around, utilizing our own feet was not the best way, IMO, haha.

Hilly San Francisco

In this trip, I tried to rely as much as possible to public transport (even later in LA, in Part V). And the San Francisco public transport was quite sufficient for that.

The Public Transport and Clipper Card

The public transport in San Francisco (and the Bay Area) was run by several different companies. Luckily, there was the “Clipper Card” which could be used in all of them, including the BART train which provided train service to San Francisco International Airport. It worked by charging the card with some credit and tapping it before every ride.

A BART train at San Francisco International Airport

I bought my card at San Francisco International Airport when I had just arrived from Amsterdam. You could ask the Information Desk where you could buy one. There was a $3 non-refundable cost for each card but to me it was well worth it even when only considering the practicality! Also, with the card I got a $0.25 discount from each single ride with a MUNI vehicle (the normal price was $2.75) which was valid for 90 minutes. So I liked it indeed.

The Clipper Card

Anyway, speaking of public transport, the most popular (and touristy) one was definitely the cable cars which crossed the hills of San Francisco. They were packed with tourists in most of my time there! I mean, the lines just to ride one were just so long! The cable cars were operated by MUNI but had a special fare. Instead of $2.75, a single ride fare was $7! Yep, they were that popular! The price was literally 2.5 times more expensive than other modes of transport yet they were that busy! Haha. I didn’t ride a single one when I was there, btw; even when my hotel was close to one of the stops. You know, I just couldn’t stand the crazy line! ๐Ÿ˜›

A San Francisco’s cable car

Instead, my favorite mode of transport there was the streetcars! They had regular fare ($2.75, which I only needed to pay $2.50 with the Clipper Card), not as busy as the cable cars, and they all had classic look and cute colors! Hahaha ๐Ÿ˜† .

A San Francisco’s street car

A San Francisco’s street car

My favorite line was the historical line F which went around the hills and connected Fisherman’s Wharf and Embarcadero with the Market Street in the city center.

Beside those classic modes of transport, regular buses and subways also ran throughout the city.

Bus 76X to Golden Gate Bridge

The Living Cost

I had a few trips to some supermarkets while I was in San Francisco. And there, somehow I felt like the price of everything was generally quite expensive. Even I did not remember New York to be this expensive when I went there two years ago!

But you know, maybe I did not remember it correctly so I kept it to myself. This was until Noni (Nyonyasepatu) asked me if I also felt that San Francisco was expensive! Lol ๐Ÿ˜† . We agreed that San Francisco was, indeed, an expensive city!

San Francisco

During the course of the trip, I also heard from a few locals that indeed the living cost had surged a lot. You see, the booming economy (driven by the Silicon Valley nearby) and the relatively small size of the city resulted in demand that was always on top of supply, thus pushing the living cost up.

The Food

Speaking of food, I felt like San Francisco (and California in general) had wide varieties of food from all over the world, and especially East Asia! Having said that, there was one particular dish which I would like to try out: the clam chowder. I immediately had the chance to try one out for brunch when I was in Pier 39.

Clam chowder

And … the soup was great!! However, the bread tasted really strange to me, hahaha ๐Ÿ˜†

I also noticed that, somehow, I had quite some Japanese food in San Francisco. I had a yakitori (this was actually my first meal there, lol ๐Ÿ˜† ), a pork ramen, and a bento! They were good, even though I felt like the original one in Asia was still better. But I was not complaining at all.

A salad and Cheetos from the supermarket for dinner

Speaking of eating out, most restaurants were closed on Christmas day in San Francisco. However, a lot of people would still like to eat out. And this resulted in unbelievably long queues at those few restaurants that were open! That evening, I had to resort to supermarket stuffs because I did not want to queue for a long time just for a Burger King, for instance, haha. Even then, I was not the only one with this idea because the supermarkets were also busier than the other days!

TO BE CONTINUED…

BAHASA INDONESIA

Posting-posting dalam seri 2017 Year End Trip:
1. Introduction
2. Part I: Getting to California
3. Part II: A Tourist in San Francisco
4. Part III: Alcatraz and Yosemite
5. Part IV:ย The City of San Francisco
6. Part V: The City of Los Angeles
7. Part VI: Hollywood and Griffith
8. Part VII: More of LA
9. Part VIII: Back to Europe in Business Class

San Francisco

San Francisco

Sebelum berangkat jika aku berpikir akan San Francisco, aku akan membayangkan kota yang besar. Ternyata, apalagi untuk standar Amerika, ini salah loh! Bahkan Bandung pun sebenarnya lebih besar daripada San Francisco!

Walaupun mungkin ini berita baik dimana secara teori kebanyakan tempat di kotanya bisa ditempuh dengan berjalan-kaki, sebenarnya ada dimensi ketiga yang harus dipertimbangkan di sini: ketinggian. San Francisco adalah kota yang amat berbukit-bukit, dimana ada beberapa bukit di pusat kotanya (Lihat, misalnya, Jalan Lombard di posting bagian II). Jadilah untuk berkeliling kota, aku rasa mengandalkan kaki sendiri bukan lah cara yang paling efisien, haha.

San Francisco yang amat berbukit-bukit.

Di perjalanan ini, aku mencoba untuk mengandalkan transportasi umum semaksimal mungkin (termasuk di LA, di bagian V). Dan menurutku sih transportasi umum di San Francisco lumayan memadai untuk itu.

Transportasi Umum dan Kartu Clipper

Transportasi umum di San Francisco (dan Bay Area) dikelola oleh beberapa perusahaan yang berbeda. Untungnya, ada “Kartu Clipper” yang bisa digunakan di semuanya, termasuk juga kereta BART yang jaringannya terhubung ke Bandara Internasional San Francisco. Kita bisa menggunakan kartunya dengan cara mengisi credit ke dalamnya dan menempelkannya ke mesin sebelum setiap perjalanan.

Sebuah kereta BART di Bandara Internasional San Francisco.

Kartuku aku beli di Bandara Internasional San Francisco ketika aku tiba dari Amsterdam. Lokasinya bisa ditanyakan di meja informasi kok. Ada biaya non-refundable $3 untuk kartunya tetapi menurutku sih ini worth it banget bahkan hanya dengan mempertimbangkan kepraktisannya! Juga, dengan kartunya aku mendapatkan diskon $0,25 dari setiap perjalanan dengan kendaraan yang dioperasikan oleh MUNI (tarif normalnya $2,75) yang juga berlaku selama 90 menit. Iya, aku memang suka kartu ini.

Kartu Clipper

Anyway, ngomongin transportasi umum, jenisnya yang paling populer (dan turistik banget) adalah cable cars yang menyeberangi bukit-bukitnya San Francisco itu. Cable cars ini selalu penuh dengan turis ketika aku di sana! Bahkan, antrian untuk naiknya aja juga panjang banget loh! Walaupun cable cars-nya dioperasikan oleh MUNI, tarif khusus dipasang untuk mode transportasi ini. Bukannya $2,75, tarif satu kali jalannya dipatok $7! Iya loh, seterkenal itu memang! Bahkan ketika tarifnya sudah dipatok 2,5 kali lipat dari mode-mode transportasi lain, tapi masih ramai banget! Haha. Aku nggak naik satu pun sih ketika aku disana, walaupun sebenarnya hotelku berlokasi dekat dengan salah satu pemberhentiannya. Ya soalnya malas sih melihat antriannya yang gila-gilaan itu! Haha ๐Ÿ˜›

Sebuah cable car di San Francisco

Nah, mode transportasi favoritku justru adalah streetcars-nya! Tarifnya dipatok reguler ($2,75, yang mana aku hanya perlu membayar $2,50 dengan Kartu Clipper), tidak seramaiย cable cars, dan disainnya kece klasik dengan warna-warna yang lucu gitu! Hahaha ๐Ÿ˜†

Sebuah street car di San Francisco

Sebuah street car di San Francisco

Jalur favoritku adalah jalur bersejarah F yang memutar mengelilingi bukit-bukitnya dan menghubungkan Fisherman’s Wharf dan Embarcadero dengan Market Street di pusat kota.

Di samping mode-mode transportasi klasik itu, ada banyak pula bus reguler dan subway di kotanya.

Bus 76X menuju Jembatan Golden Gate

Biaya Hidup

Cukup sering aku mampir di supermarket selama di San Francisco. Dan di sana, aku merasa harga-harganya kok cenderung mahal ya. Bahkan, seingatku New York pun nggak segitunya deh mahalnya ketika aku pergi ke sana dua tahun yang lalu!

Ya tapi ini kan mungkin perasaanku aja ya sehingga bisa jadi salah. Jadilah pikiran ini aku simpan sendiri. Sampai Noni (Nyonyasepatu)ย bertanya kepadaku apakah aku juga merasa San Francisco itu mahal! Haha ๐Ÿ˜† . Dan kami setuju bahwa San Francisco itu memang beneran kota yang mahal!

San Francisco

Di perjalanan ini, aku dengar dari beberapa orang yang tinggal di sana bahwa memang biaya hidup di sana memang menanjak naik banget. Jadi kemajuan ekonomi (yang kebanyakan dimotori oleh keberadaan Silicon Valley di dekat sana) dan ukuran kotanya yang relatif kecil membuat permintaan selalu berada di atas penawaran, sehingga otomatis biaya apa-apa juga naik.

Makanan

Ngomongin makanan, aku merasa San Francisco (dan California pada umumnya sih) memiliki keberagaman makanan yang luas banget dari seluruh dunia, terutama Asia Timur! Walaupun begitu, ada satu masakan lokal yang ingin banget aku cobain: clam chowder. Aku langsung mendapatkan kesempatan untuk mencobanya untuk brunch ketika aku berada di Pier 39.

Clam chowder

Dan … supnya memang enak banget!! Tapii, rasa rotinya itu aneh banget untukku, hahaha ๐Ÿ˜†

Aku juga perhatikan bahwa aku cukup banyak makan masakan Jepang di San Francisco. Aku makan yakitori (bahkan ini adalah makanan pertamaku di sana, haha ๐Ÿ˜† ), ramen babi, dan bento! Semuanya enak sih, walaupun masih enak yang aslinya di Asia, haha. Tetapi aku nggak komplain kok dalam hal rasa.

Salad dan Cheetos dari supermarket untuk makan malam.

Ngomongin makan di luar, kebanyakan restoran di San Francisco tutup dong di hari Natal. Masalahnya, masih banyak banget orang yang ingin makan di luar hari itu. Sebagai akibatnya, terbentuklah antrian yang panjangnya gila-gilaan di sedikit restoran yang memilih buka hari itu! Malam itu, aku memutuskan untuk makan makanan supermarket aja soalnya aku ogah antri lama bahkan untuk Burger King doang, haha. Walaupun begitu, ternyata bukan aku saja lho yang memiliki ide ini karena supermarketnya lebih ramai daripada di waktu-waktu lain!

BERSAMBUNG…

#2053 – 2017 Year End Trip (Part III: Alcatraz and Yosemite)

ENGLISH

Posts in the 2017 Year End Trip series:
1. Introduction
2. Part I: Getting to California
3. Part II: A Tourist in San Francisco
4. Part III: Alcatraz and Yosemite
5. Part IV:ย The City of San Francisco
6. Part V: The City of Los Angeles
7. Part VI: Hollywood and Griffith
8. Part VII: More of LA
9. Part VIII: Back to Europe in Business Class

Following a suggestion I got before the trip, I booked two tours during my stay in San Francisco. The first one was a tour to Alcatraz, a small island where the infamous Alcatraz federal prison was located in the past; and the second one was a one-day tour to the Yosemite National Park in Sierra Nevada.

And here are the stories from these two tours.

The Alcatraz Tour

I was very lucky to snatch a last minute ticket online for the Alcatraz Tour two days before I left for the trip. I also checked the tour the day before and it was indicated that the tour had been fully booked until early January! Crazy, lol ๐Ÿ˜† . So I immediately grabbed the ticket the day after when suddenly there was an availability!

I visited Pier 39 the morning of the tour (see Part II) and from there I walked to Pier 33 where the tour would depart from. There was a ticket booth there, but they had this sign:

The tour was fully booked until January 4th (which was two weeks later).

Lol ๐Ÿ˜† . Anyway, I took the 12:30 PM departure, and the ferry boat left on time. It was just a mere 10 minutes cross to Alcatraz Island.

From the docking area, we just needed to follow the sign to the prison building at the top of the island. We entered the prison building via what used to be the shower area of the inmates, and this room was now also where we would get the audioguide. From there, we went up the stairs where the tour would start immediately in the cell area of the prison.

The famous sign at the dock

Since about a month before the trip, as I finished remarathoning Star Trek: Voyager, I decided to watch Orange Is The New Black on Netflix which story setting was a prison. I felt like watching the series helped me understand Alcatraz better. At least I became more “familiar” with a few jargony American English terms thrown in during the tour, which I would not have understood had I not watched the series, haha.

The cells of Alcatraz

The cells looked scary and depressing (like what I would expect from a prison cell). The SHU (Special Housing Units) cells, which basically was a prison within a prison, were located in the next room. If the “regular” cells looked scary and depressing already, the SHUs were exponentially more than that.

The SHU of Alcatraz

The tour covered basically all aspects of Alcatraz, including the office area and the visitation area. I also learned that some officers with their families actually lived in Alcatraz back then!ย Anyway, what I found interesting was that actually from Alcatraz, you would get a beautiful view towards Downtown San Francisco. But thinking about it, perhaps this was the ultimate “punishment” for the prisoners; where the city was just right before their eyes yet unreachable.

Downtown San Francisco from Alcatraz

The audioguide also told a few stories about a riot and a few escape attempts. The tour ended at the dining and kitchen area which, surprisingly, were actually the most “dangerous” part of the prison. The reasoning made sense though, inmates sitting together in a room with cutleries in their hand. Anyway, from there, we were asked to go back down to return the audioguide and to the gift store.

The kitchen of Alcatraz

Overall it was a nice tour at Alcatraz and I recommend this tour. I spent good two hours there before catching a ferry boat back to Pier 33.

The Yosemite One-Day Tour

My tour to Yosemite would depart at 7 AM from San Francisco. So I woke up early (not a problem thanks to the jetlag anyway, lol ๐Ÿ˜† ), had two cup noodles as breakfast, and went to the departure spot nearby my hotel.

This tour took place a day after my visit to the Golden Gate Bridge, where I crossed the bridge while it was very windy. Unfortunately, though, this turned out to affect my condition, where I did not feel completely fit today. Well, I wasn’t sick per se, but it was obvious that maybe I was just about 60-70% fit. I knew this wasn’t ideal but I also didn’t want to bail the tour, so I forced myself to go and try to enjoy it as much as I could.

The bus left San Francisco on time and turned out to have a wifi and toilet, haha. Anyway, here is the approximate route map to Yosemite today:

The route map to Yosemite today

Yep, it was around 375 km one-way which we would travel in around five hours (including a 30 minutes stop for food/snack in Livingston (the circle in the map above)). This meant we would spend literally ten hours just in the road today, haha. The view along the way was mostly quite “plain” because we were driving in a higway anyway. However, it started to get better once we left the highway and were closing in to Sierra Nevada (but the wifi signal also got problematic with weak reception there, haha).

Livingston, California

Anyway, we arrived at the entrance of the Yosemite National Park just before noon. We had a quick stop there to take pictures with the sign, a “proof” that we were in Yosemite, haha. From there, we officially entered the park where we had to pass a check point and bought the entrance tickets (which were obviously included in the tour). We made a few stops along the way, at a waterfall, the Tunnel View, and the bottom of the famous El Capitan rock.

Yosemite Valley from Tunnel View

The view was indeed very beautiful! Though it was unfortunate that the weather today wasn’t the best as it was very cloudy. The fact that I wasn’t at my best physically also played a part as well, haha. Anyway, the Tunnel View provided a really amazing overview of the Yosemite Valley; and El Capitan was an impressive vertical 900 meter rock formation.

The El Capitan rock

From there, the bus parked near the Yosemite Valley Lodge. We were given about 3.5 hours to explore the park on our own. First, of course I went to the restaurant in the lodge for some lunch! Haha ๐Ÿ˜› . The food was okay even though it was not that special.

From lunch, I walked towards the Yosemite Falls that was nearby. On the way there, I saw trees with red trunks, which I suspected was the famous redwoods! It was my first time seeing tree trunks in this color and it was beautiful!

Redwoods

Anyway, the Yosemite Falls was very tall at 739 meter in height. The Falls actually consisted of three part: the Upper Fall, the Middle Cascades, and the Lower Fall.ย  There was a viewing point near the bottom of the Lower Fall and unsurprisingly it was busy, haha. I stayed there for a good few minutes and took some photos.

A selfie with the Lower Yosemite Fall.

I still had about 1.5 hour to explore. I was thinking to take the free shuttle bus to the other part of the park. However, I also did not feel that well. Considering that it was still day four of my two weeks vacation in California, I thought it would be best if I took it slow. And so, instead of exploring the park, I decided to go to the lodge’s lounge! Hahaha ๐Ÿ˜†

Lounging in Yosemite

I left the lounge on time to go to the designated place where our bus would leave. A few other people were late for about 15 minutes, though. And then, we started the five hour trip back to San Francisco. Again, we made a stop at Livingston for dinner, which I chose to have the Popeye’s fried chicken. Upon approaching San Francisco, we made a stop at Treasure Island to get the beautiful night view of the city.

Downtown San Francisco from Treasure Island

This one day tour was definitely nice to get a taste of Yosemite; though, perhaps spending a night there wouldn’t be a bad idea given the distance. In my opinion, it would be even much better if the weather was nice and I was in a better condition physically, hahaha…

TO BE CONTINUED…

BAHASA INDONESIA

Posting-posting dalam seri 2017 Year End Trip:
1. Introduction
2. Part I: Getting to California
3. Part II: A Tourist in San Francisco
4. Part III: Alcatraz and Yosemite
5. Part IV:ย The City of San Francisco
6. Part V: The City of Los Angeles
7. Part VI: Hollywood and Griffith
8. Part VII: More of LA
9. Part VIII: Back to Europe in Business Class

Mengikuti saran yang aku dapatkan sebelum berangkat, aku mem-booking dua tur di San Francisco. Yang pertama adalah tur ke Alcatraz, sebuah pulau kecil yang mana dulunya adalah lokasi penjara federal Alcatraz berada; dan yang kedua adalah tur satu hari ke Taman Nasional Yosemite di Sierra Nevada.

Berikut adalah cerita dari dua tur ini.

Tur Alcatraz

Aku beruntung bisa mendapatkan tiket last minute online untuk tur Alcatraz ini, dua hari sebelum aku berangkat. Sehari sebelumnya aku juga mengecek tiketnya yang mana sudah ter-booking penuh sampai awal Januari dong! Gila ya, haha ๐Ÿ˜† . Jadilah begitu ada spot yang dibuka keesokan harinya, tiketnya langsung aku beli!

Di pagi hari turnya aku mengunjungi Pier 39 (baca Bagian II) dan dari sana aku berjalan ke Pier 33 darimana turnya akan berangkat. Di sana juga ada konter tiket sih, tetapi hari itu mereka memasang papan tanda ini:

Turnya sudah penuh sampai tanggal 4 Januari (dua minggu ke depan).

Huahaha ๐Ÿ˜† . Anyway, tiketku adalah tiket keberangkatan jam 12:30 siang; dan kapal ferinya berangkat tepat waktu. Penyeberangan ke Pulau Alcatraz hanya memakan waktu sekitar 10 menit saja.

Dari area pendaratan kapalnya, kami hanya perlu mengikuti papan petunjuk ke gedung penjara yang ada di bagian atas pulau. Tur di dalam gedung penjara dimulai melalui apa yang dulunya area mandinya para napi, dan di ruangan ini juga sekarang audioguide dibagikan. Dari sana, kami naik ke lantai atas dimana tur langsung dimulai di area kamar-kamar sel di penjaranya.

Tanda di area pendaratan kapal yang terkenal

Ceritanya semenjak sekitar sebulan sebelum perjalanan ini, karena aku sudah selesai menonton ulang Star Trek: Voyager, aku memutuskan untuk menontonย Orange Is The New Blackย di Netflix yang mana ceritanya mengambil tempat di sebuah penjara. Aku merasa menonton acara ini membantuku untuk lebih mengerti Alcatraz. Setidaknya aku menjadi lebih “familier” dengan beberapa istilah jargon dalam bahasa Inggris Amerika yang banyak digunakan di sepanjang turnya, yang mana nggak akan aku pahami andaikata aku tidak menonton seri ini, haha.

Sel-sel di Alcatraz

Sel-selnya sendiri nampak menyeramkan dan muram (Ya memang seperti apa yang aku bayangkan akan sel penjara sih). Sel-selย SHU (Special Housing Units), yang mana pada dasarnya adalah penjara di dalam penjara, berlokasi di ruangan sebelahnya. Jika sel-sel “reguler”-nya aja sudah nampak menyeramkan dan muram, level keseraman dan kemuraman level SHU ini berkali-kali lipat lebih tinggi.

Salah satu sel SHU di Alcatraz

Turnya bisa dibilang meng-cover banyak aspek dari Alcatraz, termasuk area kantor dan area visitasi. Aku juga baru tahu lho bahwa dulunya ada beberapa petugas termasuk keluarganya yang tinggal di Alcatraz! Anyway, yang cukup mengagetkanku adalah sebenarnya dari Alcatraz kita mendapatkan pemandangan Downtown San Francisco yang indah. Tapi dipikir-pikir lagi, mungkin memang ini ya “hukuman” penghabisan bagi para napi; dimana kotanya nampak jelas di depan mata tetapi tidak dapat mereka gapai.

Downtown San Francisco dari Alcatraz

Audioguide-nya juga menceritakan beberapa kejadian penting seperti kekacauan (riot) dan beberapa upaya napi untuk kabur. Turnya berakhir di area makan dan dapur yang, cukup mengagetkan, adalah area paling “berbahaya” di penjara ini. Penjelasannya masuk akal sih, napi-napi duduk bersama di satu ruangan dengan peralatan makan di tangan mereka. Anyway, dari sana, tur mengarah turun ke tempat pengembalian audioguide dan toko suvenir.

Dapur Alcatraz

Secara keseluruhan tur Alcatraz ini oke juga lho dan memang aku rekomendasikan deh. Aku menghabiskan waktu sekitar dua jam di sana sebelum naik kapal feri untuk kembali ke Pier 33.

Tur Satu Hari ke Yosemite

Turku ke Yosemite dijadwalkan berangkat jam 7 pagi dari San Francisco. Jadilah aku bangun pagi (nggak masalah juga sih soalnya masih jetlag, haha ๐Ÿ˜† ), makan dua mi gelas untuk sarapan, dan berjalan ke area keberangkatan yang lokasinya tidak jauh dari hotelku.

Turku ini berlangsung sehari setelah kunjunganku ke Jembatan Golden Gate, dimana aku menyeberangi jembatannya ketika anginnya kencang banget. Sialnya, ternyata ini juga mempengaruhi kondisi tubuhku, dimana aku tidak merasa terlalu fit hari ini. Nggak sakit sih, tetapi juga jelas bahwa kondisiku mungkin hanya 60-70% fit saja. Memang tidak ideal tetapi aku juga ogah untuk membatalkan turnya, jadilah aku memaksakan diri untuk berangkat dan mencoba untuk menikmatinya sebisa mungkin.

Busnya berangkat dari San Francisco tepat waktu dan juga dilengkapi dengan wifi dan toilet, haha. Anyway, berikut ini kira-kira rute ke Yosemite hari ini:

Peta rute ke Yosemite hari ini

Yep, sekali jalan jaraknya sekitar 375 km yang ditempuh dalam waktu sekitar lima jam (termasuk pemberhentian 30an menit untuk makan di Livingston (lingkaran di rute di peta di atas)). Ini berarti kami akan menghabiskan sekitar sepuluh jam hari ini cuma di jalan doang, haha. Pemandangan sepanjang jalannya tidak begitu menarik sih sebenarnya karena bus menggunakan jalan tol. Namun, pemandangannya semakin kece begitu bus keluar dari jalan tol dan semakin mendekati Sierra Nevada (tetapi di sisi lain sinyal wifinya juga semakin jelek, haha).

Livingston, California

Anyway, kami tiba di pintu masuk Taman Nasional Yosemite sebelum jam 12 siang. Kami berhenti sebentar di sana untuk foto-foto dengan tandanya, sebagai “bukti” bahwa kami berada di Yosemite, haha. Dari sana, kami masuk ke tamannya melalui sebuah pos dimana kami harus membeli tiket masuk (yang mana jelas sudah termasuk dalam biaya turnya). Kami berhenti di beberapa tempat di sepanjang jalan: di sebuah air terjun, di Tunnel View, dan di bawah batu tebing El Capitan yang terkenal banget itu.

Lembah Yosemite dari Tunnel View

Pemandangannya sendiri memang kece banget! Walaupun sayang sih cuaca hari ini kurang oke karena berawan banget. Kondisiku yang kurang fit juga cukup mempengaruhi juga, haha. Anyway, dari Tunnel View kami mendapatkan pemandangan Lembah Yosemite yang bagus banget; dan El Capitan adalah formasi batu tebing vertikal setinggi 900 meter.

Batu tebing El Capitan

Dari sana, bus diparkir di dekat Yosemite Valley Lodge. Kami diberikan waktu bebas selama 3,5 jam-an untuk mengeksplor tamannya sendiri. Pertama-tama, jelas dong aku pergi ke restoran di lodge-nya untuk makan siang! Haha ๐Ÿ˜› . Makanannya sendiri oke lah walaupun nggak spesial-spesial amat.

Setelah makan siang, aku berjalan-kaki ke arah air terjun Yosemite yang berlokasi tidak jauh. Di perjalanan kesana, aku melihat pohon-pohon dengan batang berwarna merah, yang mana aku duga adalah pohon redwoodsย yang terkenal itu! Pertama-kalinya nih aku melihat batang pohon berwarna begini dan memang indah kece banget!

Redwoods

Anyway, air terjun Yosemite itu tinggi banget loh, yang mana memiliki tinggi 739 meter. Air terjunnya sebenarnya terdiri atas tiga bagian: Upper Fall, Middle Cascades, dan Lower Fall. Ada viewing point di dekat bagian bawah Lower Fall dan tidak mengherankan area ini ramai banget, haha. Aku berada di sana cukup lama untuk menikmati pemandangannya dan tentu juga berfoto-foto.

Selfie dengan Lower Yosemite Fall.

Dari air terjunnya, sebenarnya aku masih memiliki waktu sekitar 1,5 jam untuk jalan-jalan. Terpikir untukku naik shuttle bus yang disediakan cuma-cuma oleh taman nasionalnya ke bagian lain dari tamannya. Namun, saat itu aku juga merasa kurang enak badan nih. Dengan mempertimbangkan hari ini baru lah hari keempat dari liburan dua mingguku di California, aku memutuskan bahwa pilihan yang terbaik bagiku adalah untuk tidak terlalu memaksakan diri lebih jauh lagi. Jadilah bukannya mengeksplor tamannya lebih jauh, aku memutuskan untuk bersantai di sebuahย lounge di lodge-nya saja! Hahaha ๐Ÿ˜†

Nge-lounge di Yosemite

Aku keluar dari lounge-nya tepat waktu untukku kembali ke area berkumpul darimana busnya akan berangkat. Beberapa orang lain ada yang terlambat nih sekitar 15 menit-an, haha. Dan kemudian, kami memulai perjalanan lima jam kembali ke San Francisco. Lagi, kami berhenti di Livingston untuk makan malam, dimana aku memutuskan untuk makan ayam goreng Popeye’s. Ketika sudah dekat dengan San Francisco, kami berhenti di Treasure Island untuk mengambil foto malam kotanya yang kece banget.

Downtown San Francisco dari Treasure Island

Tur satu hari ini jelas adalah tur yang oke untuk mencicipi Yosemite; walaupun kalau dipikir-pikir lagi mungkin menginap semalam di sana adalah ide yang baik juga dengan mempertimbangkan jaraknya sih. Menurutku, turnya akan lebih seru lagi andaikata cuacanya bagus dan kondisi tubuh sedang fit, hahaha…

BERSAMBUNG…

#2050 – 2017 Year End Trip (Part II: A Tourist in San Francisco)

ENGLISH

Posts in the 2017 Year End Trip series:
1. Introduction
2. Part I: Getting to California
3. Part II: A Tourist in San Francisco
4. Part III: Alcatraz and Yosemite
5. Part IV:ย The City of San Francisco
6. Part V: The City of Los Angeles
7. Part VI: Hollywood and Griffith
8. Part VII: More of LA
9. Part VIII: Back to Europe in Business Class

There were a lot of interesting places in San Francisco, and they were all easily accessible with public transport (which was one of the reasons why I liked San Francisco, but more on this later in the Part IV post ๐Ÿ˜‰ ). Anyway, here are those places which I visited.

The Golden Gate Bridge

As this was my first time to San Francisco, obviously the first destination that I put in my list was the Golden Gate Bridge! Haha ๐Ÿ˜› . Though, I actually went there on my second day because I already booked a tour to Alcatraz for my first day (more on this in the Part III post).

Anyway, I took the special hourly 76X bus service (it only ran on weekends and public holidays) to the southside ofย  the bridge where there was a small park overlooking the bridge. I was quite early this morning so the famous tourist spot was not that busy yet, haha. Of course I took some selfies (with the help of my gorillapod) with the super famous bridge; and realized that it was quite windy today.

The mandatory selfie with the Golden Gate Bridge.

After enjoying the view from the southside, I impulsively decided that I would like to cross the bridge, on foot! Lol ๐Ÿ˜† . Here is the thing, while it was just a “bridge”, the length of the Golden Gate was around 2.6 km from end to end. And of course I would not just cross the bridge and come back immediately. I would like to go to the Vista Point at the northside as well. This meantย I would need to walk for more than 5.2 km to get back to where I came from. But hey, I was on vacation so why not? Lol ๐Ÿ˜†

Crossing the bridge was awesome and from on it we could see Downtown San Francisco and the Alcatraz Island too. It was even windier there on the bridge than it was at the southside park, btw. It took me about half an hour to get to Vista Point at the northside.

The mandatory selfie while crossing the Golden Gate Bridge on foot.

The Vista Point was also quite busy at the time, and I noticed that most people either drove there or took the Hop On Hop Off bus (like, obviously, lol ๐Ÿ˜† ). However, if you would like to take a self picture with the bridge in December, the southside was definitely the better side. Because this time around the sun was in the southern hemisphere , you would get terrible backlight from the Vista Point.

The Golden Gate Bridge from Vista Point

After about 20 minutes at the Vista Point, I went back and crossed the bridge for the second time. This time, though, I realized that some people jogged on the bridge. Quite possibly they lived in San Francisco, and indeed I thought it was a great idea for some exercise! ๐Ÿ˜€ Because you know what, I made around 10,000 steps just from crossing the bridge and back! Anyway after arriving at the southside, which had become more crowded this time around but still manageable, I decided to take bus 28 and went back to Downtown San Francisco.

Pier 39 and the Fisherman’s Wharf

Pier 39 in San Francisco

Another popular district of San Francisco was the Embarcadero, where many marine-related establishments were located. It consisted of many different piers designated with odd numbers, and the most touristic one was Pier 39. Indeed Pier 39 was beautiful with many different cute shops and restaurants in it; but the most interesting attraction in this pier was definitely this:

Yep, those were sea lions; and there were many of them just lounging on those decks in Pier 39!!

Close to Pier 39 was the Fisherman’s Wharf, which formerly home to many fishermen in San Francisco (hence the name). There were many shops and restaurants there, yet still felt organized and not overly crowded.

The Fisherman’s Wharf in San Francisco

Union Square

I stayed at a hotel nearby the Union Square in Downtown San Francisco, which location I found very strategic! There were many shops, restaurants, supermarkets, and even a mall (The Westfield) nearby! The Union Square itself was also very beautiful with a big Christmas Tree and was surrounded by several different stores.

Union Square

The Alamo Square and the Lombard Street

The Alamo Square was a park in San Francisco and was quite famous because The Painted Ladies, houses in Victorian architecture with beautiful colors, were located next to the square. Btw, there was free wifi at the park too ๐Ÿ˜› .

The Seven Painted Ladies in San Francisco

Another famous attraction in San Francisco was the Lombard Street, a steep narrow one-way street with eight hairpin turns; and is claimed to be the “crookedest street in the world”. This spot obviously attracted many people, which half came on foot (like me) and the other half came with cars to experience the street first hand! And indeed, if I were to drive a car in San Francisco, I would like to try out this street myself as well! Haha ๐Ÿ˜›

TO BE CONTINUED…

BAHASA INDONESIA

Posting-posting dalam seri 2017 Year End Trip:
1. Introduction
2. Part I: Getting to California
3. Part II: A Tourist in San Francisco
4. Part III: Alcatraz and Yosemite
5. Part IV:ย The City of San Francisco
6. Part V: The City of Los Angeles
7. Part VI: Hollywood and Griffith
8. Part VII: More of LA
9. Part VIII: Back to Europe in Business Class

Ada banyak tempat menarik di San Francisco, dan semuanya relatif mudah untuk dicapai dengan transportasi umum (yang mana adalah salah satu alasan mengapa aku suka San Francisco, ini akan kubahas lebih lanjut di posting Bagian IV ๐Ÿ˜‰ ). Anyway, berikut ini beberapa tempat yang aku kunjungi.

Jembatan Golden Gate

Karena ini adalah kunjungan pertamaku ke San Francisco, jelas dong ya tempat pertama yang kumasukkan daftar harus aku kunjungi adalah Jembatan Golden Gate! Haha ๐Ÿ˜› . Walaupun kenyataannya aku baru ke sana di hari keduaku sih karena di hari pertama aku sudah booking tur ke Alcatraz (ini akan kuceritakan di posting Bagian III).

Anyway, aku naik bus rute khusus 76X yang jadwalnya satu jam sekali (rute ini hanya dijalankan di akhir pekan atau tanggal merah) ke sisi selatan jembatan dimana terdapat taman kecil darimana kita bisa melihat jembatannya. Ternyata aku datang cukup awal pagi ini sehingga tempat ini masih belum ramai-ramai amat, haha. Jelas dong ya aku foto-foto selfie di sana (dengan bantuan gorillapod-ku) dengan jembatan yang super terkenal ini. Oh ya, ternyata cuaca hari ini berangin banget lho.

Selfie wajib dengan Jembatan Golden Gate.

Setelah menikmati pemandangan dari sisi selatan, aku spontan memutuskan untuk menyeberangi jembatannya, dengan berjalan-kaki! Haha ๐Ÿ˜† . Begini nih, walaupun cuma “jembatan” doang, panjang Golden Gate adalah sekitar 2,6 km loh dari ujung ke ujung. Dan jelas aja lah ya aku nggak cuma akan menyeberanginya terus langsung kembali lagi. Aku ingin sekalian mampir di Vista Point yang berlokasi di sisi utara jembatan. Nah, ini artinya aku harus berjalan-kaki lebih dari 5,2 km untuk kembali ke tempat awalku. Ah, tapi kan ini aku sedang liburan ya jadi mengapa tidak? Haha ๐Ÿ˜†

Menyeberangi jembatan ini seru banget dan dari jembatannya kita bisa melihat Downtown San Francisco dan Pulau Alcatraz. Di jembatannya bahkan lebih berangin daripada di taman sisi selatan, btw. Aku membutuhkan waktu sekitar setengah jam untuk mencapai Vista Point di sisi utara.

Selfie dulu dong sebagai kenang-kenangan menyeberangi Jembatan Golden Gate dengan berjalan-kaki.

Vista Point juga cukup ramai waktu itu, dan aku perhatikan kebanyakan orang kesana dengan cara naik mobil atau naik bus Hop On Hop Off (ya nggak mengherankan sih, haha ๐Ÿ˜† ). Namun, jika ingin berfoto bersama jembatannya di bulan Desember, sisi selatan adalah sisi yang lebih baik. Karena di bulan Desember matahari berada di belahan Bumi selatan, berfoto dengan jembatannya dari Vista Point bermasalah dengan backlight yang kuat banget.

Jembatan Golden Gate dari Vista Point

Setelah sekitar 20an menit di Vista Point, aku memutuskan untuk kembali ke sisi selatan dan menyeberangi jembatannya untuk kedua kalinya. Kali ini, aku baru menyadari bahwa ada banyak juga orang yang jogging di jembatan ini lho. Mungkin mereka tinggal di San Francisco, dan aku pikir memang ini adalah ide olahraga yang oke banget! ๐Ÿ˜€ Ya secara ya, aku ternyata telah melangkahkan-kaki sebanyak sekitar 10.000 langkah loh hanya dengan menyeberangi jembatan ini dua kali! Anyway, setelah tiba di sisi selatan yang mana sudah lebih ramai dengan turis sekarang, aku naik bus 28 untuk kembali ke Downtown San Francisco.

Pier 39 dan Fisherman’s Wharf

Pier 39 di San Francisco

Satu distrik populer lainnya di San Francisco adalah Embarcadero, dimana ada banyak bangunan yang berhubungan dengan kelautan berada. Tempat ini terdiri atas banyak dermaga (pier) yang diberi nomor dengan angka ganjil, dan yang paling turistik adalah Pier 39. Memang Pier 39 itu kece banget dengan banyak toko-toko dengan disain yang imut dan restoran di sana; tetapi atraksi paling menarik di dermaga ini jelas adalah ini:

Iyaa, itu adalah singa laut; dan ada banyak ya yang nampak santai-santai menikmati hidup di dek-dek itu di Pier 39!!

Di dekat Pier 39 terdapat distrik Fisherman’s Wharf, yang mana sesuai namanya, dulunya adalah area para nelayan di San Francisco. Ada banyak toko dan restoran di sana, tetapi masih tetap terasa teratur dan tidak terlalu ramai.

Fisherman’s Wharf di San Francisco

Union Square

Aku menginap di hotel di dekat Union Square di Downtown San Francisco, yang mana lokasinya strategis banget! Ada banyak pertokoan, restoran, supermarket, dan bahkan sebuah mall (The Westfield) di dekat sana! Union Square-nya sendiri juga kece banget dengan Pohon Natal raksasa dan dikelilingi oleh banyak pertokoan.

Union Square

Alamo Square dan Jalan Lombard

Alamo Square adalah sebuah taman di San Francisco dan cukup terkenal karena Painted Ladies, rumah-rumah dengan gaya arsitektur Victoria dengan warna-warna yang kece banget, berada. Btw, di tamannya ada free wifi juga loh ๐Ÿ˜› .

Tujuh Painted Ladies di San Francisco

Satu atraksi terkenal lainnya di San Francisco adalah Jalan Lombard, sebuah jalan satu arah yang curam banget dengan delapan tikungan super tajam; dan diberikan titel “jalan paling berliku-liku sedunia”. Tempat ini menarik banyak orang untuk berkunjung, yang mana setengahnya datang dengan berjalan-kaki (kayak aku) dan setengahnya naik mobil untuk langsung merasakan jalan ini! Dan memang lho, kalau aku di San Francisco menyetir mobil kemarin, aku jelas ingin mencoba jalan ini sendiri! Haha ๐Ÿ˜›

BERSAMBUNG…