A Weekend Adventure in Niles, CA

Niles Canyon is a small old railroad town in the San Francisco Bay Area with detailed history and nature trails. Its small downtown feel with antique shops and a classic railway museum almost makes you forget you’re in the Bay Area. Take a drive out with your family and discover this hidden gem of a town and its surrounding areas for a nearby weekend adventure.

SATURDAY

The Niles Farmer’s Market opens at 10am and is centrally located up Main Street. Browse all the fresh and locally grown fruit and vegetables or support local soap and craft vendors.

Then, make some time for high tea at Tyme for Tea (reservation only). This cute enchanting tearoom holds antiques and collectibles throughout the store and provides a uniquely crafted high tea experience with scones, jams, and teas.

If you’re still curious to browse more treasures, explore some of the other shops located on the Main Street, from thrift shops to museums to antique stores like A Moment in Time.

After lunch, take a walk or drive (or both!) down the famous Lombard street. With 8 sharp turns on a single block, this is said to be the most crooked street in the word. The Victorian homes and flowers also add to the beauty of this zig-zag block.

For a late lunch, Falafel Etc. offers authentic Middle Eastern family dining, open for takeout and outdoor dining. Whether it’s a falafel plate or chicken kabab plate, their assortment of dishes definitely won’t leave you feeling hungry!
Now you’ll have the energy to take you through the Peak Meadow Trail where you can admire a beautiful view of the whole city.
Stop by Spices for a traditional Chinese dinner, featuring Hunan cuisine. Its spicy flavors, fresh aromas and beautiful array of colors will be sure to satisfy you after the tiresome hike, notably their “Fried Tofu with Garlic Sauce” dish.

LODGING

The Hyatt Place Fremont hotel at $119 a night is conveniently located close to San Jose’s Old Mission and Mission Peak Regional Preserve.

SUNDAY

If you’re in Fremont you absolutely have to visit the gem of a donut shop that is Christy’s Donuts. Get there early to try their famous donut holes or crème-filled donuts! Note that it is cash only.
The Alviso Slough Trail is the perfect spot for a morning walk with a calming ocean view and plenty of birds to see and hear.

After a tranquil Sunday morning, Banana Leaf will bring some action into your lunch with their “open-kitchen” style cooking: flames, aromas, and sizzling right in front of your eyes. This Singaporean restaurant is open for indoor and outdoor dining.

Hit up Kokonut Desserts for some refreshing bubble tea or Vietnamese desserts to finish up the trip on a sweet note!

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Get your day started at the Ferry Building, one of the most iconic buildings in the city with a waterfront view of the Bay Bridge. Regarded as one of the best farmers markets throughout the country, every Saturday morning you can shop from a huge selection of fresh produce, meats, food trucks, and baked goods. Some of my favorites are the vanilla donuts at the Donut Farm, and the pork belly sandwich at Roli Roti.

Walk or drive along the Embarcadero waterfront to Pier 39, a popular tourist attraction with many activities that include an aquarium, live performances, sea lions, and a number of shops & restaurants. I recommend grabbing lunch at Fog Harbor Fish House for both an amazing view & delicious food.

After lunch, take a walk or drive (or both!) down the famous Lombard street. With 8 sharp turns on a single block, this is said to be the most crooked street in the word. The Victorian homes and flowers also add to the beauty of this zig-zag block.

Next, head to the Palace of Fine Arts for a beautiful display of Roman architecture and natural scenery. One of the best spots in San Francisco for taking photos, a picnic, or just going on a meditative walk.

To wrap up the day, drive across the famous Golden Gate Bridge to the neighboring city of Sausalito. Find parking at Lot #5 and walk down Bridgeway street to explore local shops and restaurants.

I recommend Barrel House Tavern or Scoma’s for delicious seafood. Make sure to reserve in advance if you want seats with the best views overlooking the Bay & San Francisco!