San Francisco’s Ghirardelli Square is a popular shopping plaza located off of Hyde Street and about a ten minute walk from Fisherman’s Wharf. Heavily visited by tourists, Ghirardelli Square is home to San Francisco’s Ghirardelli Chocolate company (hence where the square takes its name) and was once home to the actual chocolate making factory as well. Today Ghirardelli Square is considered a historical landmark and is home to dozens of shops, restaurants as well as to the flagship Ghirardelli Chocolate Store.
Ghirardelli Square in the past has had a bigger tourist draw than that of present day and used to offer more shops. The square is currently undergoing an extensive renovation that will add additional shops and restaurants. Those who have a sweet tooth for chocolate should make an effort to see Ghirardelli and definitely pick up some treats at the Ghirardelli Chocolate store. Those not familiar with the Ghirardelli brand-they are an American made chocolate (based in San Francisco of course) that are famous for the little hand held chocolate squares that come in an assortment of flavors from the traditional milk chocolate to caramel fillings and peppermint.
For those inclined on dining, the best restaurant at Ghirardelli Square is McCormick and Kuleto’s which is a contemporary seafood restaurant serving a variety of fresh seafood and salads.
Ghirardelli Square Is commonly marketed as being in Fisherman’s Wharf but that is anything but the case. Although not far from the wharf, its about a ten minute hike up a steep hill to get to it. Seeing that there isn’t that much to do once you arrive we don’t necessarily recommend it. It should also be noted that Ghirardelli Chocolates can be found at every souvenir and drug store in San Francisco, as well as abundant quantities at both San Francisco and Oakland Airports. However those waiting in line for the cable car at the Hyde Street Turn table (to head back into Union Square) may find it’s a good distraction to make the average 45 minute wait go by faster by sending their travel companion to pick up some goods.