personal Photography

San Francisco & Napa Valley trip photos

Golden Gate crossing

Before attending Google I/O, I went with a co-worker and friend to San Francisco and Napa Valley. Originally we were only going to SF for some shopping and walking around before going to see Cats, the broadway show at the Orpheum Theatre.

Gabriel Saldaña at Napa Valley

But after I commented that I’ve never been to there before, and since we both love wine, we decided to make a detour to Napa Valley. The view was fantastic all the way, very nice, green and relaxing landscapes.

napa valley

wine barrels

I don’t remember the name of the winery where we stopped by, but it was very nice. You could go see the wine barrels and picnic at the front yards. There was lots of families and live spanish guitar musicians playing.

big wine containers

wine in grass

I tried several wines, we bought some bottles and had some white wine glasses while having picnic lunch under the sun in very nice and comfortable grass.

Time flies when you’re relaxed under the sun and enjoying a nice wine, so we had to rush back to San Francisco, fighting traffic cause we were running late to see Cats. Fortunately we already had tickets so it was only a matter of getting there. We made it just 10mins late, so we did enjoy the whole show except for the two first songs. I would’ve loved to take some pictures of the show, but it was forbidden.

Ghirardelli chocolate factory store

Then when we thought we had already passed our stress moment of the day back in the traffic jam before the show, we decided to continue our day going to the Ghirardelli chocolate factory to get some chocolates and some shakes at the cafeteria. But we ran out of gas, uphill right at Union Square. We didn’t pay attention to the gas meter and the car completely stopped. I stopped a cab and went to the nearest gas station and fortunately they also sell the gas containers, so I easily filled up the container, went back to the car, poured it in and we were set. Of course we stopped at the nearest gas station to get a full tank, but we continued our journey through the city towards the chocolate factory.

Ghirardelly chocolate factory

The chocolate factory has a beautiful sight from the bay, I was lucky to get some steady shots without a tripod.

After enjoying a great chocolate shake at Ghirardelli’s cafeteria, we still wanted more touring and we ended up having dinner at the Hard Rock Cafe by Pier 39. It was a great day.

Hard Rock Cafe at Pier 39

I love travelling, and every time I get to travel I try to squeeze the most out of my time to know and experience the best from each place. After visiting the Bay Area a couple of times already, there’s still lots of places I still don’t know. So I’m looking forward to my next trip to know more of the area, the people and take some good photos. Any recommendations?

By Gabriel Saldaña

Gabriel Saldaña is a web developer, photographer and free software advocate. Connect with him on and Twitter