San Jose is a prominent city in Silicon Valley that is surrounded by undulating hills. It is a major technology hub in California’s Bay Area.
The historic downtown area includes architectural features ranging from the 1883 Italianate-style Odd Fellows building to Spanish Colonial Revival structures. The Tech Museum of Innovation, devoted to exploring science and technology, is also located downtown.
San Jose has a rich cultural heritage, reflected in the different ethnic makeup of its population. According to Trulia’s 2012 data, San Jose is the most diversified of the 100 major metros.
San Jose is an unexpected, relaxing, and interesting vacation location. This cool, innovative sanctuary has long been a hub of reinvention.
Initially growing as an agricultural mecca, lush with farms, vineyards, and orchards, considered California’s oldest community, founded in 1777, and now prospering as a dot-com knowledge epicenter.
Here are ten of the best things to do in San Jose:
1. Visit the Prestigious Tech of Innovation Museum
Do you know how to get to San Jose? In the heart of California’s high-tech Silicon Valley, lively San Jose and its close-knit neighbors provide a plethora of diversions: fascinating cultural settings, lush natural getaways, and delectably diverse cuisines, including Michelin-starred restaurant bragging rights.
The Social Robots gallery, for example, allows children to design, build, and program an actual robot using sensors, controllers, and actuators. Visitors praised the exciting yet educational exhibitions for their children. The museum also features an IMAX Theater on-site, which shows both instructional and feature films. Those who visited without little children advised future visitors that the facility is better suited to elementary school children and is not necessarily an entertaining stop for adults or teenagers.
2. Vineyard and WineriesTours
The vineyards and wineries may be overlooked by some visitors due to the area’s high-tech focus. A mistake. Not only are there delicious grapes to have, but many of the wineries have fascinating backstories to tell — and property tours and wine tastings are also enjoyable. There are two standouts among the numerous excellent options. Testarossa Winery and Tasting Room in Los Gatos results from a historic novitiate constructed in 1888. Jesuits produced altar wines and fortified wines for nearly 100 years. The historic stone cellars have been included in the expansion of the modern-day winery, as you go about pairing wine with excellent meals in your tours of some of the best wineries that California has to offer.
Here are some of the best wineries in San Jose
- Loma Prieta Winery
- Testarossa Winery
- House Family Vineyards
- La Rusticana d’Orsay
- Picchetti Winery
- J Lohr Vineyards & Wines
- The Grandview Restaurant
- Wrights Station Vineyard & Winery
Getting from one area to another, whether alone or in a group, necessitates transportation and caution. Distracted driving is the most common cause of car accidents in the United States, according to statistics.
Being involved in a serious vehicle accident caused by an irresponsible driver is upsetting.
If this has happened to you, the first step in pursuing compensation is to speak with a San Francisco personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. The losses you’ve incurred need accountability. A San Jose accident-injury law firm can help you fight for your rights, so you don’t have to go through the ordeal alone.
3. Walking, Hiking, Biking with Nature
San Jose is a leader in green commuting thanks to its miles of trails and miles of on-street bikeways that connect residential neighborhoods to places of pleasure and work. The Municipal Rose Garden, Castle Rock State Park (with giant redwood and fir trees, horseback riding, and rock climbing), Calero Reservoir County Park, Alum Rock Park (within a canyon in the Diablo Mountain Range’s foothills), Kelley Park (with a butterfly garden and Japanese friendship gardens), and Almaden Park (with a butterfly garden and Japanese friendship gardens) are just a few of the nature-loving activities available in San Jose and its environs.
4. Santana Row Visits
Where do Silicon Valley elites spend their cash? To Santana Row, a posh shopping complex located just west of downtown San Jose. Delicious restaurants, a movie theater, and fashionable stores like Gucci and Kate Spade can all be found here. The apartments and Hotel Valencia erected above the ground-floor businesses add to the urban feel, amplified at night when Santana Row transforms into a nightlife hotspot. Many recent visitors report that this is the best place in the city to people-watch. Keep an eye on the parking lot: Exotic sports cars such as Lamborghinis and Ferraris are frequently seen in this area.
The stores and restaurants are open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. However, many that cater to the late-night crowd will stay open later. Visitors should be warned that parking can be scarce during peak hours, so you may need to park across the street at the less fashionable Westfield Valley Fair mall.
5. Relax at California’s Great America
California’s Great America, which is open from March to December, was established in 1976 and combines thrill rides with the slides and pools of a waterpark at Boomerang Bay.
The park had nine roller coasters by 2019, with the wooden Gold Striker, which launched in 2013, as the highlight. On a 31.5-meter first drop, you’ll achieve speeds of more than 50 mph before entering a tunnel that’s more than 50 meters long.
The park’s Peanuts-themed Planet Snoopy, which opened in 2010 and features spinners, a carousel, dodgems, and the light Woodstock Express roller coaster, appeals to younger guests.
6. Get Your Creeps on Winchester Mystery House
When gun magnate William Wirt Winchester died in 1881, he left a considerable legacy to his wife, Sarah Winchester (1839-1922). She invested in one of the country’s most remarkable structures during the next 40 years.
The Winchester Mystery House is an ornate, tile-clad jumble of gables, chimneys, conical towers, and finials with no logical plan, designed in the Late Victorian and Queen Anne styles.
This sense of chaos, combined with the innumerable murders at the hands of Winchester repeating rifles, may be the genesis of ghost legends dating back to the building’s earliest days.
The Winchester Mystery House has 161 rooms, 40 bedrooms, two ballrooms, and more than 10,000 individual panes of glass, but development ceased when Sarah died.
Doors open onto walls, and stairways lead to sealed ceilings in the Escher-esque interior.
Since 1923, the estate has been open to the public for visits, awe-inspiring tourists with its mix of beautiful and weird.
7. Explore around Japantown
A little north of downtown San Jose is one of three surviving Japantowns in the United States.
This can be traced back to a neighborhood of Japanese migrant men’s boarding houses in the 1880s.
By the early twentieth century, they were joined by “Picture Brides” (chosen by matchmakers), and hundreds of companies arose to accommodate the increasing population.
Following incarceration during World War II, Japantown was resettled, and roughly a quarter of the residents within a three-mile radius of this neighborhood have Asian ancestry in the twenty-first century.
Shuei-Do Manju Shop, which sold manj (sweet pastry) to Emperor Akihito in 1994, is worth visiting. The Japanese American Museum documents Japanese immigration to America and the terrible days of internment. At the same time, the San Jose Tofu Company serves delicious homemade tofu.
Kazoo, a long-term resident who serves sushi, katsu curry, and noodles, is a good place to stop for a bite.
8. Have a Closer Look at the Wildlife in Rancho San Antonio Preserve
This 3990-acre preserve and the 290-acre County Park connected to it offer hikes into the Santa Cruz Mountains.
Your hike will take you through ecosystems, which have been influenced by their orientation to the sun or location on the range’s slopes.
Willows and cottonwoods grow alongside creeks, while groves of big-leaf maples and bay trees grow in the sheltered canyons.
The scrubby south-facing slopes are clothed with manzanita, chamise, and mountain mahogany, while the thick woods on the north slopes are home to oaks and bays.
Mountain lions, deer, and bobcats live at the preserve, one of the last places in Silicon Valley where native wildlife can roam freely.
There are about 30 kilometers of walking pathways for people, with an elevation variation of over 700 meters.
The 150-year-old Deer Hollow Farm, which today serves as an educational center but still produces and sells eggs and fresh fruit, is a nice diversion from trekking.
9. Learn a Little More About the City’s Roots at San Jose Museum of Quilts & Textiles
In 1977, it was the first quilt and textile museum in the United States. It highlights the art, craft, creators, and history of quilts and textiles.
Quilts, textile-based art, and clothes are among the more than 1,000 items in the collection.
A c.1830 mosaic quilt top by Mary Taylor Lloyd Key (married to poet Francis Scott Key, composer of the Star-Spangled Banner), scores of molas by the Kuna people of Panama’s San Blas Islands, quilts by notable 20th-century designers like Ernest Haight and Ruby McKim, and a rare linsey-Wooley whole cloth quilt from c.1820 are among the highlights. At any one moment, the museum hosts three short-term shows, with Know Your Meme standing out in late 2019.
The concept of Internet memes as a form of communication was explored in this crowdsourced show, which included quilting, cross-stitching, knitting, crocheting, embroidery, basketry, and weaving.
10. Relive the Pre-Tech Era of San Jose while Strolling in the Downtown Campbell Farmers’ Market
This farmers’ market is one of the greatest in the South Bay area, and it’s only ten minutes from downtown San Jose.
The market is open year-round on Sundays from 9:00 a.m. to 13:00 p.m., regardless of the weather.
The only exceptions are the Boogie Music Festival in mid-May and Oktoberfest in late October.
Eggs, honey, seasonal fruits and vegetables, cheese, fresh pasta, meat, flowers, and other organic products can be purchased directly from the source.
There will be plenty of vendors selling craft beer and Mexican food, all of which will be accompanied by outstanding live musicians.
Downtown Campbell also offers plenty of mom-and-pop shops, cafes, and restaurants to keep you entertained for a while.
Life in San Jose is infused with technology, on the ultramodern VTA light rail, at interactive museums, on the campuses of tech giants, and even the city’s movie festival, Cinequest, championing virtual reality. If you want a change of scenery and loves nature and technology, the quintessential and tech-savvy San Jose is for you.