This itinerary to the geeky sights of San Francisco and Silicon Valley offers 48 hours of sights and tips specifically designed for tech-interested people who are interested in the startup and tech world of the Bay Area and might even consider moving to the Valley or Downtown San Francisco.
This is a two-day pilgrimage for the inner geek in you. It was made for two types of visitors:
- You are visiting the Bay Area and want to get an overview of interesting tech-sights (i.e. see HP Garage, visit Stanford Campus, drive by the Google campus) as well as restaurants and coffee shops where the startup-crowd hangs out.
- You are planning to work in the Bay Area and want to understand the culture of the valley by discovering the most relevant tech-sights (i.e. visit the Computer History Museum and get an overview of the most relevant incubators or local networking events).
We will cover Silicon Valley, San Francisco and Berkeley. This guide won't discuss the traditional touristy sights which you can get from other guide books such as this one.
We will visit Silicon Valley on Day 1 and cover San Francisco and Berkeley on Day 2.
Silicon Valley is best visited by car as it's very spread out. It runs south from San Francisco and encompasses the Santa Clara Valley as well as the southern Peninsula and the southern East Bay. So let's jump in a car together and explore Silicon Valley.
The term Silicon Valley dates back to its large number of silicon chip producing companies. It can be considered the technology hub of the United States. But, recently a trend emerged: startup-companies like Airbnb, Dropbox and Yelp are choosing San Francisco over Silicon Valley. The numbers support this trend: while startups in Silicon Valley raised $1.17 billion between January and March 2013, San Francisco startups raised $1.04 billion. And while 107 deals have been counted in the Valley, there were 104 deals in San Francisco. It still sounds that Silicon Valley leads the game, but if you consider that Silicon Valley is made up of various cities (e.g. Palo Alto, Mountain View, ...) pulling in money and deals, one can see that San Francisco has been ahead of the game this year.
For this reason we are going to cover both Silicon Valley and San Francisco in this guide - along with the two best universities around: Stanford in Palo Alto and the University of California in Berkeley.
Click below for an overview of the most important sights of Day 1:
And if you click the next link you will be sent to the overview of of Day 2 covering San Francisco and Berkeley: