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Lombard Street - The Crookedest Street in San Francisco

Lombard Street - San Francisco's Crookedest Street
Lombard Street -- known as "San
Francisco's crookedest street".

San Francisco is well known for its hilly streets. Although there are plenty of ups and downs scattered around the city for walkers to enjoy, the most famous landmark for visitors to this California city has to be Lombard Street.

Lombard Street earned the nickname " the crookedest street" in the 1920s when a smart thinking resident had the brilliant idea to eliminate the steep hillside's stretch between Hyde and Leavenworth. The solution? Redesign it into a lovely, landscaped cobblestone path that winds down the breakneck grade of Russian Hill.

If you want a taste of how bad driving or walking on this hill was before the twists were added, just wander over two blocks and try looking down Filbert Street, one of the neighboring streets. Lombard Street's 27 percent grade is even steeper!

Although Vermont Street in the Potrero Hill District near McKinley Park may actually be the crookedest street in town, it is the scenic elements of Lombard Street that make it the number one attraction for tourists.

The Victorian houses, condos, and townhouses in this section of Russian Hill are some of the priciest real estate in San Francisco. Even with the constant stream of tourists, the residents manage to keep the street ablaze with flowers.

Driving down the street is fun, but a leisurely walk let's you see the sights without the worry of navigating the sharp curves. The twisty section is actually only about 1/4 of a mile long.

Stop and turn around when you reach Leavenworth Street, at the bottom of the switchback section, and snap the best pictures looking back up the hill. You'll capture the scale of the road and the cars slowly winding their way through the maze of turns at the posted 5 mph speed limit.

An easy way to get to the top of the scenic section is on the Powell-Hyde cable car line. There is a stop at the top of this block where you can get off to take pictures and walk down (and around!) what is today one of San Francisco's most famous tourist attractions.

also see in Travel -> San Francisco Fleet Week

More about Lombard Street around the Web:

SF Icons - Lombard Street

Lombard Street (San Francisco)

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