Visit the birthplaces of Internet giants and the global headquarters of Social Networks on the Silicon Valley tour. This is the ultimate tour for techies around Silicon Valley and the San Francisco Bay area. Have a few hours spare on your business trip?
Silicon Valley in the San Francisco Bay area is home to many of the world’s top tech and internet companies; Google, Apple, Intel, Facebook and Instagram. I travelled to Silicon Valley on 1st October to launch the Flying and Travel “dot com” website. After all, it’s a Travel Website!
Full driving and location details on our interactive map, which you can use on the go with your mobile device gps!
1. Facebook and Instagram HQ
It was a beautiful sunny afternoon on the flight over to San Francisco from London. When San Francisco Airport lands aircraft on the westerly Runways (28L/R), jets are vectored down the 280 or 101 freeways. Along this route are stunning views over Silicon Valley. When the aircraft banks to the left (flying northward) to join the final approach you should get a good view of the Facebook & Instagram HQ out the left hand side.
It was from here the first Flying and Travel Facebook and Instagram Posts were made; LIKE!
The Facebook sign is located at the main entrance of the complex. If you drive in (there’s no barriers, just a security guard) you can park close to the entrance, and then a very short walk to the Sign.
Facebook and Instagram HQ is located at 1 Hacker Way, Menlo Park
2. Androids at Googleplex
Googleplex has open access to their courtyard area. Like all the offices in silicon valley they’ll be empty on weekends. Within the Googleplex you’ll find a beach volley ball court, outdooor seating areas and a T-Rex dinosaur statue.
Just down the road from Googleplex is the Android statue park. Here are large statues of a Lollipop, Donut, Cupcake, Kitkat and other sweet deserts.
These sweet treats represent the code names for the Google Android operating systems; v1.5 – Cupcake, v4.4 – Kitkat, v5.0 Lollipop etc. Another sight to keep eyes out for is the Google Street View car which is parked close by to the statues.
3. The Garage where Google was born
This Garage in a quiet suburban street is where Google was born. Larry Page and Sergey Brin, the co-founders of Google, rented this garage and three rooms in the house. They were still students at Stanford University which is close by.
Google Garage is located at 232 Santa Margarita Avenue, Menlo Park.
4. Apple Campus
The Apple corporate HQ is located at the Apple Campus on Infinite Loop. There is an Apple Store at the campus (without a genius bar) which sells apple merchandise only sold here. According to a store worker the most popular apple merchandise are their Apple T-Shirts.
Apple are in the process of building a new future HQ called “Apple Campus 2” in Cupertino, located on E Homestead Rd and N Tantau Ave. The new campus is expected to open in 2017.
Apple Campus is located at Infinite Loop, Cupertino.
5. The Garage where Apple was Born
This garage in Los Altos is where Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak formed Apple and began building the first Apple computers. The house is actually the childhood home of Steve Jobs.
Steve Jobs Garage is located at 2066 Christ Drive, Los Altos.
6. HP Garage, the Birthplace of Silicon Valley
This house in Palo Alto is listed in the National Register of Historic Places as the “Birthplace of Silicon Valley”. The story is Dave Packard and Bill Hewlett used the one-car garage here to begin their business partnership: Hewlett-Packard. Their first product was an audio oscillator. There is a historic Landmark plaque outside the house.
HP Garage is located at 367 Addison Avenue, in Palo Alto.
7. Computer History Museum
The history of computers and the Information Age is fully documented at the Computer History Museum. From the first computers, hardware, software and to modern day exhibits like the Google driver-less car. Be sure to stop at their gift shop, where their “Geek” T-shirts are the most popular item!
Computer History Museum is located at 1401 N Shoreline Blvd, Mountain View.
8. Intel Inside at the Intel Museum
The Intel Museum (free entrance) is a clean room mock-up (where they manufacture chips), with exhibits explaining the history and technology of Silicon chips. Remember the 386 processor from the 1990’s?
Intel Museum is located at 2200 Mission College Blvd, Santa Clara
9. Stanford University Campus
The main campus of Stanford University is located in Palo Alto within the Santa Clara Valley. The Hoover Tower, inspired by the cathedral tower at Salamnaca (Spain), dominates the skyline of the campus.
10. Twitter HQ on Market Street
So not strictly Silicon Valley, the Twitter HQ is actually located in downtown San Francisco. This was the first stop on my tour of the day and where the first Tweet @FlyingandTravel was sent from.
— Flying and Travel (@flyingandtravel) October 1, 2016
Twitter HQ is located at 1355 market Street, Zip 94103.