Reading on the Ferry
A great read while you're on the trip is Houseboats of Sausalito by Phil Frank, part of the Images of America series. If you're a fan of architecture or of San Francisco Bay Area history, it's a fascinating trip from the 1800s through the Summer of Love and today's architect-designed floating homes. It's loaded with vintage and modern photos. Frank was a popular local historian and cartoonist who passed away recently, and he manages that rare combination of good humor and historical accuracy.
Walking in Sausalito
Here's all you need to know to never get lost in Sausalito: Our little town is sandwiched between the cliffs of the Marin Headlands and the shore of San Francisco Bay. If the Bay is on your left you're facing south; if it's on your right you're facing north. Bridgeway is the main street, and in some places practically the only street! Almost every restaurant in town is on Bridgeway or within a block on either side.
As you disembark from the ferry you'll be facing towards the hillside. Unless you've decided to eat at the Spinnaker (see below), walk one block towards the hill and you'll be standing on the corner of Bridgeway and El Portal or Bridgeway and Anchor, depending on which side of the little park you choose to walk. That puts you in the heart of Sausalito.
If you're heading to the Spinnaker, don't walk the block to Bridgeway. Instead, head to your right along the shore of the Bay after you disembark from the ferry. After walking through a small park you'll see the restaurant to your right, atop a pier jutting into the Bay.
Restaurants in Sausalito
There are many excellent restaurants, from casual to elegant, within easy walking distance of the ferry pier in Sausalito. The prices aren't cheap, but you came from San Francisco, so you're already used to that! A few restaurants in Sausalito are tourist traps that offer routine food and inattentive service, but most are good and several are real gems.
A few of our close-to-the-ferry favorites, running north to south:
• Poggio Trattoria, 777 Bridgeway - About one block north on the far side of the street from the ferry, at the base of the Casa Madrona Hotel. Consistently rated in the top 100 Bay Area restaurants, the beautiful dining room co-mingles the casual and the elegant. One of the few places where the Manager visits your table, asks about your meal, and then actually listens to what you say.