I plan a few rides every time I'm in the bay area. Nothing big, just revisiting places that made such great memories during my twelve year stay there. I've alway thought that San Francisco is an easy place to love. Everything about it is dramatic, from the landscape to the people. Not to mention, most of all, the weather. Foggy and cold in the Nopa area while sunny and warm in the Mission.
Two rides I almost always do are north over the big red bridge to Mt. Tamalpais and south down Skyline Blvd. to Alice's for a hot cup of joe. There are other good places to ride like the Wall up the Berkeley Hills and further north to Skagg Springs, for example, but Mt. Tam and Alice's are my personal favorite spots. Thirty minutes in the saddle and the busy city madness is totally forgotten. Ride north up tight, twisty roads through Marin County's eucalyptus lined hills to the peak of Mt. Tam, sitting 2,574 feet above sandy Stinson Beach far below. Ride south through redwood groves to reach "Four Corners" and the historic Alice's Restaurant, a destination for all motor heads because of its quaint atmosphere and the vicinity of endless curving roads in every direction.
One thing to know about riding around the bay is always plan the type of gear you are going to wear. It may be warm and sunny where you are but that could change real quick. I don't mind being a little hot as long as I have vents to open, but not preparing for the cold fog and mist can really ruin my day on a bike. Good gloves, a scarf or neck warmer and a jacket liner is always a good combination in SF. Even if just cruising in the city.
Looking forward to my next visit. The Clubman Show is just around the bend so I will have to plan a couple more good rides. Can't wait.