Traveling to Silicon Valley – My Guide
Posted on: January 25, 2019 - In: Apple Everything Google Observations Silicon Valley Tesla
If you are going to visit Silicon Valley I would suggest trying to find a few industry events and investor/startup pitch days to get a sense of what’s going on, and which are often open to the public, findable on Meetup and/or Eventbrite, and most often held at:
- Law and VC firms around Sand Hill Road and University Ave (Menlo Park / Palo Alto)
- Stanford (Palo Alto)
- Plug & Play Tech Center (Sunnyvale)
- Random companies and startup incubators in Mountain View, Santa Clara, etc.
Places that you can visit on your own:
- Golden Gate (try to pick the day of your trip with the best weather, it is usually windy and cloudy and don’t forget the jacket)
- The Exploratorium – a museum of science, technology, and arts in San Francisco
- Palace of Fine Arts
- Alcatraz and Angel Island
- Computer History Museum (Mountain View)
- Moffett Field (Mountain View)
- Tesla Factory (Fremont)
- Stanford University / Shopping Center (Palo Alto)
- Intel Museum (Santa Clara)
- Tech Museum (San Jose)
If you are a tech enthusiast and possibly know anyone who works there, you can visit a lot of headquarters of notable tech companies like:
- Apple Park is open for visitors (Cupertino)
- Googleplex can visit a few landmarks and gift shop (Mountain View)
- Facebook (Menlo Park)
- NVIDIA (Santa Clara)
- Yahoo (Sunnyvale)
- eBay (Campbell)
- PayPal (San Jose)
- CISCO (San Jose)
- Adobe (San Jose)
- Zoom (San Jose)
- Netflix (Los Gatos)
Outside of Silicon Valley (if you have time):
- Santa Cruz (beach / Boardwalk)
- Big Sur & Monterey (world-class aquarium)
- Sonoma/Napa (California’s wine region, like France’s wine country)
If you just want to hang out, walk around, eat, and get a feel for the local vibe, places like:
- Castro Street (Mountain View)
- University Avenue (Palo Alto)
- Santana Row (San Jose)
- San Pedro Square Market (San Jose)
There are a few things to watch out for though:
- Keep your street smarts up in San Francisco, the city in particular unfortunately has a huge homelessness problem that can sometimes be unpleasant.
- Traffic on our main highways is usually terrible during normal commuting hours, so would recommend trying to avoid that in your planning (unless you want to experience our rush hours too).
- Public transportation is lacking compared to other developed metros across the world despite the bad traffic and need for improvement, so plan in advance if you’re going to rely on them.
But overall, it’s fairly pleasant and happening here (for tech in particular).
Hope you enjoy your visit and let me know on comments if you have any question.