We love all the seasons here in San Mateo County, but there is one in particular that comes alive with vibrant, incredible colors - some so bright you may not even believe your eyes! Seasonal rain brings a spectacular display of flowers that bloom on the San Francisco Peninsula. I’ve spotlighted a few of these areas that are worth the trip for a perfect springtime selfie!


Here is a fun selfie idea! As someone who used to drive on Highway 1 daily, one of my absolute favorite times of the year is when the yellow mustard fields bloom…and when I say yellow, I mean YELLOW! During the winter months, these resting farm fields are blooming with wild mustard plants that create the most remarkable display of neon yellow you have ever seen. Simply take a drive south on Highway 1 from Half Moon Bay through Pescadero - you can’t miss them! One suggestion, make sure you find a safe place to pull over and park before wandering into the fields and make sure you are not invading private property. Springtime (February – April) on the coast is absolutely gorgeous and worth the visit for the perfect selfie spot!


Beauty, nature, and history harmonize at Filoli Historic House & Gardens located in Woodside, CA, which makes it one of the best places to take selfies! All the seasons at Filoli are impressive, but one of the most breathtaking is during the spring months. Striking flowers appear from the soil with a bright design and color. There are so many different flower gardens, paths, and fields to choose from for a colorful seasonal selfie! During the season, over 75,000+ bulbs start to bloom creating an amazing backdrop for photos. Filoli is a great family-friendly place to visit for a relaxing day of exploring vibrant flowers.



When you are walking, driving, hiking, or just out and about during springtime in San Mateo County, it’s hard not to notice the falling petals from the blooming trees that come down like snow. This happens all throughout the region, but one “insta-worthy” spot I wanted to highlight is Central Park and the Japanese Tea Garden located in San Mateo at 50 East 5th Avenue. The garden features a granite pagoda, tea house, koi pond, and bamboo grove. It is a beautiful, peaceful location to experience year-round, but be sure to visit in the early springtime months to capture a mesmerizing display of cherry blossoms. You may visit the garden Monday - Friday from 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM or Saturday & Sunday from 11:00 AM - 4:00 PM.



At the Elizabeth F. Gamble Garden, they call springtime “the party of the year!” There is no brighter display of various colors and varieties of fabulous flowers than that of this historic house and garden located in Palo Alto. There are so many ways to experience this garden, from weddings and events to the perfect spot for a first kiss or a glamourous social media photo session. You will forever be impressed with the array of plants that bloom here each season. Admission to this garden is FREE every day and is located at 1431 Waverley Street, Palo Alto.

Whether you are simply driving through our region or visiting for a few days, we highly recommend you take the time to stop and smell the flowers this season. We would love to see your San Mateo County selfies, and we encourage you to follow us @visitsmcsv and tag us in your posts using #playbythebay!

See all that The San Francisco Peninsula has to offer! Order a Visitor Guide today and start planning your trip!