Back in April my husband treated the both of us to a little vacation in honor of my birthday and our upcoming anniversary (this summer we will have been married a quarter of a century:). We went to California, a state neither one of us had ever been to before.
We flew into San Francisco, then rented a car and drove about an hour north to where we were staying.
Driving across the famous Golden Gate Bridge while the fog is creeping in:
We didn't take time to visit Alcatraz, but we saw it several times as we drove across the bridge:
Our forays into San Francisco were brief. It was enjoyable just to see it (and its vertical streets!), but to really get the most out of it you need to stay in the city. And it would be a big help to have a local person show you the ropes about getting around. We had no problems in the Chinatown area, but on our last day before we went back to the airport we -- in our ignorance -- drove into a section of the city that was like trying to drive in downtown NYC -- very chaotic and very stressful!! We got out of there as quickly as possible, but that meant we didn't get to ride the cable car:( However, we did eat lunch at Tartine Bakery. We couldn't buy their famous sourdough because that only gets out of the oven in the late afternoon and we had to catch our plane, but the lunch was still delicious.
Most of our trip was spent outside. We went to Muir Woods and walked the trails amid the redwoods.
Mostly we just enjoyed meandering around, having no agenda. We drove around and saw vineyards and cows and cute little houses, and we went on small hikes. On our next to last day we went on a five-mile hike in a state park near Napa. Thankfully we saw no mountain lions (although there was a warning at the entrance to the trail), but we did see some turkeys:
And some deer. This deer was bedded down near the trail, and she never moved despite our proximity, making us wonder if a baby was coming, or maybe she was just used to people.
Here is a picture of us after going out to eat one night, tired but happy: