There's no shortage of things to do when visiting Pier 39 in San Fran. With an abundance of restaurants, shopping, sights & activities you won't be left bored. My favourite thing however, was the sea lions that have made the Pier their home and become a world renown attraction in their own right.Sea lions are sea mammals which have the ability to walk on land. Despite having the ability to walk on land they are quite awkward and funny to watch and are definitely more graceful in the water. The sea lions frolick in the water around the docks, playfully wrestle with each other, pushing each other off the docks or sunbake. They play a game of what seems like "stacks on", basically how many sea lions can you get on a single dock, with the sea lions laying all over and on top of each other! They seem to have no real worry about personal space whatsoever!
Don't worry about missing them during your visit - you will be able to both smell and hear them before you see them. I visited in June when there were hundreds of sea lions to watch, with this number fluctuating up and down through the seasons.
It was refreshing to see these animals there by choice, and not cooped up in an aquarium or zoo for human entertainment. They can come and go freely - which many did whilst we sat there watching them in awe (well I did, my friend who isn't as animal crazy as me went wandering off after a while haha). I found these animals so interesting, I literally could have sat there all day and watched them. If it is bad weather or sitting on the pier isn't your thing, there's plenty of restaurants on that side of the pier you can watch them from!
Do yourself a favour, get down and experience these magnificent creatures for yourself on your next visit to San Fran.