Posted March 9th, 2018, 02:53 PM
I think the shopping is terrible at Pier 39. That said, I think Ghiradelli is fun. The Boudin's at the Pier is also really good (better than the one in the food court at the bottom of Macy's at Union Square for some reason).
I was gonna say to shop at the Powell end of the cable car (the one next to the Gap), but that was because Blondie's Pizza is there. Or was there, I should say. I guess they got shut down? It was a must have, and cheap for San Francisco. Without them, then I'd say to go ahead and shop at Pier 39 unless you like very impressive mall type shopping. As a tourist, it's still impressive to see a 3 story Old Navy, even if there's an Old Navy at your local mall. Or a 6 story Macy's that's just the Women's section (Men's and furniture are still in that other building I think). And those new malls are impressive for window shopping or the food courts.
But they're not kitchy like Pier 39, and that's fun in its own way.