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Tiburon, California

January 22, 2012

When I was home in California for Christmas, I met one of my best friends in Tiburon for the day. Her parents used to live on the East Coast. Then, out of the blue, they packed up and moved to a condo in Tiburon. Lucky me! Now I get to see her when our holiday travel windows overlap.

Tiburon is a sleepy, beachy town on a little peninsula north of San Francisco. You can take a ferry from SF, or drive across the Golden Gate and loop around Richardson Bay through Sausalito and Strawberry to get there. I’d never been before, but I thoroughly enjoyed it.

We had a delicious lunch at Ginza Sushi next to huge windows facing the bay. The only problem there was deciding between the 9 vegetarian rolls! Some were topped with sauteed spinach or eggplant, and others had tempura asparagus, tofu, or yams. I loved the variety of creative vegetarian options combinations.

Tiburon has a large coffee/sandwich place and a dozen or so quiet shops to walk through. My favorite was May Madison, a specialty kitchen store with a casual atmosphere and surprisingly decent prices. I picked up some nice, thick, turquoise-striped dishtowels (similar to the ones Williams-Sonoma sells) to take home: $14 for 3.

Hills are visible around Tiburon in a couple of directions, with houses and condo buildings nestled among the trees. A sidewalk lined with grass hugs the bay and is dotted with benches, to encourage strolling and lingering.

This little town is a great place for coffee, conversation, sunshine, bay and hill scenery, and a glimpse of the Golden Gate. I hear you can find even better views on a short hiking loop in the Tiburon Uplands Nature Preserve. The pictures in this post were taken in late December, so you can only imagine what this place might look like in the spring.

You might enjoy Tiburon as a change of pace and respite from the San Francisco crowds and traffic if you’re in the area. I could even see it being a quiet, manageable homebase for tourists who want to explore the city and surrounding areas, but be a bit removed from the hustle and bustle. It definitely has a true Northern California/Bay Area feel about it, and offers a small, peaceful complement to San Francisco’s size and energy.

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