35 Best & Fun Things To Do In San Jose, California

San Jose, the capital of Silicon Valley, is a modern city with a lively downtown, diverse neighborhoods, and a rich cultural heritage.

The city is home to numerous tech giants, start-ups, and innovative companies, as well as a variety of museums, art galleries, performance venues, and parks.

This makes it an ideal destination for visitors interested in both business and pleasure. And to help you make the most of your time, I’ve put together a list of the 35 best things to do in San Jose, California.

Things To Do In San Jose, California

1. Take A Stroll Through Downtown San Jose

The best way to get a feel of San Jose is to explore its downtown area on foot. It’s a pretty happening place, full of corporate types and busy workers. 

But despite its businesslike feel, there are actually a lot of things to do in Downtown San Jose. The area is full of historic buildings, art galleries, museums, and great restaurants.

Some of the best things to see and do downtown include visiting the Tech Museum of Innovation, checking out the San Jose Museum of Art, taking a stroll through Plaza de Cesar Chavez Park, or enjoying a meal at one of the many fantastic restaurants.

There’s also a lot of great shopping to do in the area, especially at the San Pedro Square Market. This is one of the best places in the city to try out some local food and drink.

No matter what you’re into, you’ll find something to love in Downtown San Jose. After all, it’s one of the most popular places to visit in San Jose.

Location:  Downtown San Jose, CA.

2. Visit The Tech Interactive

Tech Interactive is an excellent science museum with a focus on technology and interactive games and displays. It’s a great place to visit in San Jose with kids, as they’ll be kept busy for hours. Even if you don’t have kids, it’s still a fascinating place to explore. And with over 250 different interactive games and exhibits, you’re sure to find something that interests you.

Some of the standout exhibits include The Hackery, where you can learn all about coding; the Studio, where you can create stop-motion movies, The Workshop, where you can design and build things; and The IMAX Theater, where you can catch educational films.

It’s super hands-on and educational and one of the most fun things to do in San Jose. So, even if you’re not a tech-head, it’s still definitely worth checking out.

Location: 201 S Market St, San Jose, CA 95113, United States

Opening hours: 10 am – 3 pm (Tue-Fri), Sat: 10 am – 5 pm, and Sun: 11 am – 5 pm.

Admission: $27 for adults, $22 for seniors (65+), and $22 for children.

3. See The Sharks At The SAP Center

If you’re a fan of hockey, then San Jose is the place to be. The Sharks are the city’s very own NHL team, and they play at the SAP Center. And you don’t have to like hockey to enjoy a game here. The stadium is always electric with fans from both teams, and the game is always exciting.

Even if there’s not a game on during your visit, it’s still worth checking out. It regularly hosts big musical acts throughout the year, so there’s always something going on. I didn’t get to see a game or a concert during my visit, but I did take a tour of the stadium, which was really cool.

The tours are led by passionate guides who will show you around this incredible stadium. You’ll get to see everything from the locker rooms to the commentary boxes. And being one of the top San Jose tourist attractions for sports fans, you might even get to see the Sharks players training!

Location: 525 W Santa Clara St, San Jose, CA 95113, United States.

Opening hours: 8:30 am – 5:30 pm (Mon – Friday).

Admission: Depends on the event.

4. Take Your Kids To The Children’s Discovery Museum

We often forget that kids need to be entertained too, and if you’re traveling with kids in San Jose, the Children’s Discovery Museum is a great spot to take them.

Founded in 1990, the museum was designed to spark imagination and creativity in kids through a series of interactive exhibits. And it does a pretty good job.

Some exhibits include things like the BioSITE program, which is all about the environment and how we can take care of it; Bill’s Backyard, an outdoor exhibit; and the Amazing Airmaze, where adults and kids can play together to solve puzzles. There are also a few art-based exhibits, like the LeRoy Neiman Art Studio, where kids can get creative and make their own art.

There’s a lot to explore at the Children’s Discovery Museum, making it one of the points of interest in San Jose for kids.

Location: 180 Woz Way, San Jose, CA 95110, United States

Opening hours: 9:30 am – 12:30 pm (Wed-Sun,) extends 1:30 pm – 4:30 pm (Sat-Sun)

Admission: $15 for adults, $14 for seniors, and $15 for kids

5. Stroll Through Japan-Town

Want to do something a little more cultural in San Jose? Head to Japan-town, one of only three remaining Japanese towns in the USA. This spot is full of Japanese markets, delicious sushi restaurants, and adorably kitschy souvenir shops.

It’s the perfect place to stock up on all things green tea and cherry blossom related. You can also find some excellent Japanese street food here if you’re feeling peckish. Trust me when I say the sushi is some of the best in California!

Japantown is also home to the San Jose Taiko, a Japanese drumming group. They perform regularly, and it’s a great way to experience traditional Japanese culture.

Therefore, wander around the markets, try some delicious sushi, and watch an excellent drumming performance. And with all these, it’s safe to say that a visit to Japantown is one of the best things to do in San Jose!

Location: 565 N 6th St, San Jose, CA.

Opening hours: vary by store

Admission: free

6. Get Spooked at the Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum

For those who don’t know, the Rosicrucians are a spiritual and philosophical organization founded in the early 1600s. They’re also responsible for this pretty amazing museum in San Jose.

The Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum is dedicated to ancient Egyptian culture and history. It’s one of the coolest places to visit in San Jose, especially if you love ancient Egyptian culture.

The museum is home to the largest collection of Egyptian artifacts on the West Coast of America. This includes mummies, sarcophagi, and all sorts of ancient things.

There are also heaps of different exhibitions that go through the different stages of ancient Egyptian history. This makes for a pretty fascinating day out, especially if you love learning about new things.

Location: 1660 Park Ave, San Jose, CA 95191, United States

Opening hours: 10 am – 5 pm (Friday), and 11 am – 6 pm (Sat-Sun)

Admission: $10 for adults, $8 for seniors (65+), and $8 for students.

7. Get Lost In The Municipal Rose Garden

Wondering what to do in San Jose on a sunny day? Then head to the Municipal Rose Garden! This is one of those things to see in San Jose that will make you feel as though you’ve been transported to a different country. It’s massive, boasting over 190,000 roses from all over the globe. There are 3,500 different rose bushes in 189 varieties. So, if you’re a fan of roses, this is a real dream come true. 

Having opened in 1927, it’s one of the oldest municipal rose gardens in America. It covers around 5.5 acres and is a true piece of living history. And if you’re visiting in May or June, this is one of the top places to visit in San Jose as the roses will be in full bloom. It’s a great spot for a romantic picnic too!

Location: 1649 Naglee Ave, San Jose, CA 95126, United States

Opening hours: 8 am-1/2 an hour after sunset.

Admission: Free!

8. View Art At The San Jose Museum Of Art

Founded in 1969, the San Jose Museum of Art is one of the best places to view modern and contemporary art in Silicon Valley. The museum has a strong focus on California artists from the 20th and 21st centuries.

Today, the museum houses a permanent collection of over 2,500 works of art. These include paintings, sculptures, photographs, and digital artworks. You’ll also find a selection of rotating exhibitions throughout the year.

Take a stroll through the various galleries and learn all about American pop art, minimalism, and California’s contributions to the world of contemporary art.

Location: 110 S Market St, San Jose, CA 95113, United States

Opening hours: 4 – 9 pm (Thursday), 11 am – 9 pm (Friday), 11 am – 6 pm (Saturday-Sunday)

Admission: $10 for adults, $8 for seniors, and free for teachers and students with ID.

9. Marvel At The Cathedral Basilica Of St. Joseph

You can’t go to San Jose and not marvel at The Cathedral Basilica of St. Joseph. It’s one of the most famous attractions in the city and definitely one of the top things to see.

The current building was rebuilt after the 1868 earthquake. However, the church has a much longer history dating back to 1803 when it first held its service.

The church is beautiful both inside and out. The exterior boasts stunning Romanesque Revival architecture with two tall towers and stained glass windows. The interior is also impressive, with a grandiose altar, beautiful frescoes, and an intricately carved pulpit.

If you’re interested in architecture or simply want to explore one of San Jose’s most famous attractions, a visit here is a must.

Location: 80 S Market St, San Jose, CA 95113, United States

Opening hours: 07:30 am – 06:00 pm (Daily)

Admission: Free.

10. Sip Wine At Santa Cruz Mountain Vineyard

Are you a fan of fine wine? If so, add Santa Cruz Mountain Vineyard to your list of things to do in San Jose. This particular vineyard started planting vines in 1863 and is now one of the oldest in the Santa Cruz Mountains.

The vineyard focuses on producing Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. But you’ll also find a few other varietals depending on the year. The best part about visiting here is the beautiful tasting room that looks out over the vineyards. The staff is also incredibly friendly and always happy to help you select a wine or two that you’ll love.

Location: 334 Ingalls St, San Jose, CA 95060, United States

Opening hours: 12 am – 5 pm (daily)

Admission: Tastings start at $22.

11. Stroll Through The Japanese Friendship Garden

The Japanese Friendship Garden is one of the most beautiful places to visit in San Jose. It was actually a gift to the people of San Francisco from its sister city, Okayama.

The garden is designed in the Japanese symbol for “Kokoro,” which means heart, mind, and soul. This is pretty appropriate as it’s a place that’s meant to be enjoyed slowly and with an appreciation for the natural world.

The garden spans six acres and features all sorts of different things, including a Tea House, a Koi Pond, and heaps of beautiful flowers. It’s the perfect place to come to relax and unwind for an hour or two.

Location: 75 Hagiwara Tea Garden Dr, San Francisco, CA 94118.

Opening hours: 10 am – 5 pm (daily).

Admission: Free.

12. Attend A Show At The Historic California Theatre

Originally known as the Fox Theatre when it first opened its doors back in 1927, this historic was designed to be a movie palace. And although it has changed its name, it’s still standing proud and is one of the top attractions in San Jose, California.

Today, the theatre plays host to a range of different performances, from ballets and plays to orchestras. It’s a stunning place inside and out, with an interior that oozes 1920s Hollywood glam.

I got a chance to see the San Jose Symphony perform here, and it was an incredible experience. The acoustics are next-level, and I’d definitely recommend catching a show if you can. It’s one of those things to do in San Jose that will give you a real sense of the city.

Location: 345 S 1st St, San Jose, CA 95113, United States.

Opening hours: The schedule varies depending on the performance.

Admission: Varies depending on the performance.

13. Shop At The San Pedro Square Market

Want to do some shopping and people-watching whilst in San Jose? Why not head to the San Pedro Square Market? This marketplace is made up of a number of different vendors, selling everything from souvenirs to fresh food.

It’s a great place to wander around, soak up the atmosphere and take in the beautiful architecture. The market is located in the heart of downtown and is one of the best places in San Jose to buy souvenirs. You can find everything from handcrafted jewelry to locally made arts and crafts.

There are also a number of different food vendors selling everything from fresh fruit and vegetables to artisan bread, cheese, and meats. You can even find a few places selling local wine and beer.

Location: 87 N San Pedro St, San Jose, CA 95110, United States

Opening hours: Opening hours: 11 am – 10 pm (Mon – Thur), 11 am – 12 pm (Fri & Sat), 10 am – 10 pm (Sun).

 Admission: Free.

14. Sample The Local Craft Beer At Gordon Biersch Brewer

Beer is always a great idea, and if you’re a fan of the stuff (like me), then one of the best things to do in San Jose is to visit the Gordon Biersch Brewery. It’s a local favorite and is one of the liveliest spots in San Jose, especially on Friday and Saturday nights.

The brewery was founded by Dan Gordon and Dean Biersch back in 1988 and has since become one of the most popular places to drink in San Jose. You can tour the facility, learn about brewing, and sample some of their delicious beers.

If you’re not a beer fan, they also have a full bar and some tasty bites on the menu. Therefore, you don’t have a reason not to like this place.

Location: 357 E Taylor St, San Jose, CA 95112.

Opening hours: 11 am – 11 pm (Sun – Thu), 11 am – 12 am (Fri – Sat).

15. Explore The Winchester Mystery House

Do you know the story of the Winchester Mystery House? If not, it’s a pretty fascinating one.

The house was built by Sarah Winchester, the widow of gun magnate William Winchester. After her husband’s death, Sarah was convinced that she was cursed by the ghosts of those killed by Winchester rifles.

In order to confuse the spirits, she started construction on a house in San Jose, which she never stopped working on. As a result, the Winchester Mystery House is a massive 160-room Victorian mansion with all sorts of oddities, like staircases leading nowhere and doors that open to walls.

It’s definitely one of the most famous attractions in San Jose, and you can even take a tour of the house led by a knowledgeable guide. Just beware of the ghosts!

Location: 525 S Winchester Blvd, San Jose, CA 95128, United States

Opening hours: 10 am – 4 pm (Mon – Fri), 10 am – 5 pm (Sat-Sun)

Price: $42 adults, $35 seniors, $20 children 5-12.

16. Take A Break At Kelley Park

Sometimes, the best things to do in San Jose are the simplest things. And taking a break at Kelley Park is one of those things. It’s a huge and beautiful park perfect for a picnic, a game of frisbee, or just a walk.

And being one of the biggest parks in San Jose, you won’t struggle to find a spot to relax. It’s dotted with huge trees, and there are plenty of tables and chairs for everyone. And if you’re visiting with kids, then there’s also a great playground area for them to burn off some energy!

Kelley Park really is one of San Jose’s gems, and it’s totally worth a visit, especially if you want to escape the hustle and bustle of Silicon Valley for a few hours.

Location: 1300 Senter Rd, San Jose, CA 95112, United States

Opening hours: 8 am to a half-hour after sunset

Admission: $6 parking fee.

17. Visit The Mission Santa Clara De Asis

Let’s now take a step back in time with a visit to the Mission Santa Clara de Asis. This is one of the oldest buildings in California that’s still standing today, having been built back in 1777.

The mission was originally founded by Father Junipero Serra and is part of a chain of 21 different missions that were established along the California coast.

Nowadays, the mission is part of Santa Clara University, and while it’s still an active church, visitors are welcome to explore the beautiful grounds and learn about the history of this important California landmark. And the best part is that you can combine a visit here with a walk around the university campus which is one of the loveliest in California.

Location: 500 El Camino Real, Santa Clara, CA 95053, United States

Opening hours: 7 am – 7 pm (Daily)

Admission: Free.

18. Get Your Shop On At Santana Row

They say that shopping is a sport, and if that’s the case, then Santana Row is the ultimate stadium. It’s one of the trendiest places in San Jose and also one of the best places to go if you want to treat yo’ self. And when I say treat yo’ self, I mean in the most extravagant way possible.

From high-end fashion labels to luxury spas and fine dining, this place has it all. It’s basically an open-air mall (if you can even call it that) with some interesting things to see.

Therefore, wandering around Santana Row is one of the most pleasant things to do in San Jose, thanks to its lovely architecture, cute fountains, and bubbling energy. If you need a break from all the shopping, there are plenty of restaurants and cafes to keep you fueled.

And if all that wasn’t enough, Santana Row also has its own park (Santana Park), which is a great spot to relax or have a picnic lunch.

Location: 377 Santana Row, San Jose, CA 95128, United States

Opening hours: 10 am – 9 pm (Mon – Fri), 11 am – 9 pm (Sat), 11 am – 7 pm (Sun)

19. Take A Day Trip To Santa Cruz Beach

You don’t have to spend all your time in San Jose as there are plenty of things to do nearby. Just an hour’s drive from the city is Santa Cruz, one of California’s most popular beach towns.

Santa Cruz is famed for its long, sandy beaches, which are perfect for sunbathing, swimming, surfing, and other beach activities. The boardwalk is also a popular spot, especially with families, as there are plenty of things to do here, including rides, an arcade, restaurants, and shops.

Other things to do in Santa Cruz include visiting the Natural Bridges State Park to see the monarch butterfly grove, exploring the University of California Santa Cruz campus, and hiking in the redwood forests.

So if you’re looking for famous attractions near San Jose, then you should consider spending a day (or two) in Santa Cruz.

Location: Santa Cruz, CA, USA

20. Take A Hike Through Almaden Quicksilver County Park

If you’re looking for things to do in San Jose that will get your heart rate up, then I recommend a hike through Almaden Quicksilver County Park.

This place is a hiker’s paradise, and it’s located just south of the city. There are over 50 miles of trails to explore, making it one of the top places to visit in San Jose if you love the great outdoors. 

The different trails will lead you through some pretty spectacular scenery, from dense forests to open meadows. And if that is not enough to get you excited, the park also offers camping, fishing, and picnicking opportunities. You can easily spend a whole day here exploring the different things on offer.

Location: 21785 Almaden Rd, San Jose, CA 95120.

Opening hours: 7 am – 8 pm daily.

Admission: Free!

21. Get Lost In The Butterfly Gardens Of Happy Hollow Zoo

Happy Hollow Zoo is one of San Jose’s attractions, especially if you have younger kids in tow. This place is a part amusement park, part zoo, and 100% family-friendly fun.

The zoo is home to over 150 animals, including lions, Jaguars, tigers, and red pandas. Plus, there are daily shows and educational talks that are great for the kids (and adults too).

But Happy Hollow’s real claim to fame is its Butterfly Gardens. This place is pretty magical, with all its different species of butterflies fluttering about. And as you stroll through this little piece of nature, you’ll feel like you’re in another world. Therefore, I suggest taking your time to explore and really take in this special spot.

Location: 748 Story Rd, San Jose, CA 95112, United States

Opening hours: 10 am – 4 pm (Wed – Fri) 10 am – 5 pm (Sat-Sun)

Admission: $17.25 (2 – 59 years) and $14.25 for seniors and military.

22. Enjoy The Exhibits At The San Jose Institute Of Contemporary Art

Although often overshadowed by bigger museums in San Francisco, the San Jose Institute of Contemporary Art is definitely worth a visit. The museum is small but mighty, with a curated selection of rotating exhibitions from contemporary artists. There are only three galleries, but they make good use of the space. Therefore, it will take you no time at all to see everything.

The best part is that admission is always free, which makes it one of the most budget-friendly things to do in San Jose.

Location: 560 S 1st St, San Jose, CA 95113, United States

Opening hours: 12 pm – 5 pm (Thu – Sun)

23. Hike Through Alum Rock Park

It’s always good to exercise, and what better way to do it than by spending some time in nature? Alum Rock Park is one of the best places in San Jose for a hike, as its home to some of the most beautiful landscapes in California.

The park is located in the eastern foothills of San Jose and is fantastic for a day trip. There are plenty of different trails to explore, each with its own unique views. I recommend the Alum Rock South Rim Trail, which is about 4.8 miles (7.7 kilometers) long and is considered to be a moderate hike. The trail is well-marked and will take you about 2-3 hours to complete.

There are also shorter trails if you’re not up for a long hike. Either way, you’ll be rewarded with some incredible views of the valley below.

Location: 15350 Penitencia Creek Rd, San Jose, CA 95127, United States

Opening hours: 8 am to half an hour after sunset (daily)

Admission: $6 per vehicle.

24. Have Some Fun At California’s GreatAmerica

California’s GreatAmerica is a theme park located in Santa Clara, which is just a short drive from San Jose. It’s one of the best places to visit with kids or if you’re just looking for a fun day out.

The park is huge and has over 60 rides, including roller coasters, water rides, and family-friendly attractions. There’s also a separate area called Planet Snoopy, which is ideal for younger kids. In addition to the rides, California’s GreatAmerica also has live entertainment shows. This makes it a great option for fun things to do in San Jose, especially if you’re with kids.

Location: 4701 Great America Pkwy, Santa Clara, CA 95054, United States.

Opening hours: 10 am – 8 pm (Mon – Fri), 10 am – 9 pm (Sat-Sun).

Admission: $59.99 for general admision, $44.99 for seniors.

25. Unwind In Plaza De Cesar Chavez

After a day of shopping and exploring the sights of San Jose, it might be time to relax in Plaza de Cesar Chavez. This is one of the most popular parks in the city and a great spot to take a break.

The park is pretty small, but it’s still a lovely spot to relax or read a book. Benches are dotted around the park, with plenty of space to lay out a picnic blanket. In the evening, it’s also a great place to watch the world go by with a coffee in hand.

What makes Plaza de Cesar Chavez so special is its location. It’s right in the heart of downtown and within walking distance from some of the famous tourist attractions in San Jose, such as the Tech Museum of Innovation, the San Jose Museum of Art, and the Center for the Performing Arts.

Location: 1 Paseo de San Antonio, San Jose, CA 95113, United States.

Opening hours: Always open.

Admission: Free.

26. Shop At San Jose Flea Market

Still not sick of shopping? Head to the San Jose Flea Market, where you can find pretty much anything and everything. From fresh produce to clothes, furniture, and trinkets, this place is a bargain hunter’s dream come true.

One of the coolest things about San Jose Flea Market is that it has over 2,000 vendors selling their wares, making it one of the largest in the country. It’s also pretty diverse, with vendors coming from all over the world to sell their things.

Carry some cash with you; not all vendors take a card, and be sure to bargain! Haggling is expected here, so don’t be afraid to get stuck in your price.

Location: 1590 Berryessa Rd, San Jose, CA 95133, United States

Opening hours: Dawn to Dusk (Wed, Fri – Sun)

Admission: Walk-in Entry on Sat is $3, and Sun is $5.

27. Have Fun At Mount Hermon Adventures

Mount Hermon Adventures is the perfect place to come for an adrenaline rush. Located in Santa Cruz, this is one of San Jose’s top outdoor things to do.

The park is famous for its zip-lining and aerial adventures, which are great fun for all the family. There are six zip-lining courses and two suspension bridges that you can fly across. There are also treetop adventure courses for you to enjoy. These include things like Tarzan swings and cargo nets. It’s perfect for a group activity as you can all support each other around the course.

You’re sure to have an unforgettable time at Mount Hermon Adventures. So be sure to add this to your list of fun things to do in San Jose!

Location: 17 Conference Dr, Felton, CA 95018, USA

Opening hours: 8:45 am – 5:30 pm (Mon $ Fri), 9:15 am – 6pm (Sat), 11:30 – 6 pm (Sun)

Admission: From $110 per person

28. Sample The Local Fare At San Pedro Square Market

San Jose is renowned for its diverse food scene, and there’s no better place to sample it than at San Pedro Square Market. I know I have talked about this market already, but that was for shopping. This time, I want to focus on the food.

This lovely open-air market is full of different food vendors, each selling their own specialty. You’ll find all sorts of different cuisines here, from Vietnamese and Indian to BBQ and wood-fired pizzas. There are also some great places for snacks like ice cream, churros, and cookies.

With over 20 different food vendors to choose from, it can be tough to make up your mind, but that’s all part of the fun. Once you’ve grabbed your food, find a seat at one of the communal tables and tuck in.

29. Explore The Guadalupe River Park & Gardens

Feel like getting some fresh air and enjoying some green space? Then, head to the Guadalupe River Park & Gardens. This park is a 3-mile linear park that follows the Guadalupe River as it flows through downtown San Jose.

It’s a great place to come for a walk, run, or bike ride. And it’s also one of the best spots in San Jose to enjoy some picnics, people-watching, or just relax and soak up the Sun.

But that’s not all! This trail also takes you past some of San Jose’s most popular attractions, including the Rotary PlayGarden and the Heritage Rose Garden. This means that you can easily make a day of it by exploring the park and all its different sights.

Location: 438 Coleman Ave, San Jose, CA 95110, United States

Opening hours: Always open

Admission: Free.

30. Cycle Down Los Gatos Creek Trail

Do you want to get some exercise while exploring one of the most beautiful things San Jose has to offer? Then you need to take a ride down Los Gatos Creek Trail.

This 10-mile trail stretches south from San Jose all the way to Los Gatos. The best part is that it’s almost entirely flat, so it’s perfect for a leisurely bike ride or a nice walk. And as you meander through the trail, you’ll get to see some beautiful sights of San Jose, including gardens, bridges, and plenty of lush greenery.

If you don’t have your own bike, you can always rent one from the San Jose Bike Share. They have stations all along the trail, so you can pick up a bike and drop it off at your convenience.

Location: Los Gatos Creek Trail, San Jose, CA.

31. Take A Scenic Drive Along Skyline Boulevard

I always encourage scenic drives when traveling, even if it means renting a car for the day. I think they’re such a great way to see more of an area, especially when you’re tight on time.

Therefore, it should come as no surprise that one of the exciting things to do in San Jose is drive along Skyline Boulevard, also known as State Route 35. This route will take you through different towns like Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, San Jose, and San Mateo

The drive itself is pretty incredible, as you’ll get to see some amazing coastal and mountain views. Make sure you stop at the different viewpoints to snap some photos!

You can easily make this a half-day activity and add in lunch at one of the many picnic spots along the way. Just remember to bring cash, as some of them don’t accept card payments.

Location: State Route 35, San Jose, CA.

32. Tour The Computer History Museum

San Jose is known as the heart of the tech world, so it’s important to learn about the history of how it all started. And the best place to do that is at the Computer History Museum.

This museum has an extensive collection of computer-related artifacts from all over the world. You can explore exhibits on things like early mainframes, personal computers, video games, and more.

But the best part of the museum is the hands-on experience. You can actually get to use some of the earliest computers in history! And yes, they’re as clunky as you’d expect.

It’s a great place to visit if you want to learn about the history of computing and see some pretty incredible artifacts up close.

Location: 1401 N Shoreline Blvd, Mountain View, CA 94043, United States

Opening hours: 10 am – 5 pm (Wed-Sun)

Admission: $17 for adults, $6 for youth (age 8 – 10)

33. Cool Down At Raging Waters

Raging Waters is one of the largest water parks in Northern California and makes for a great day out, especially if you have young kids. This San Jose attraction has over 25 different slides and aquatic rides, as well as a lazy river, a wave pool, and an interactive-themed water fort.

If you’re traveling with littles, they also have a great kids’ area complete with slides, fountains, and more. It’s the perfect spot to cool down in the hotter months and is one of the most popular things to do in San Jose.

Location: 2333 S Winchester Blvd, San Jose, CA 95148, United States

Opening hours: 10 am – 5 pm (daily)

Admission: $54.99 for adults, free for kids under 2.

34. Tour The Museum Of Quilts & Textiles

Are you a fan of all things fabric and fiber? If so, a visit to the Museum of Quilts & Textiles should definitely be on your San Jose itinerary.

This museum is dedicated to showcasing the art of quilting and textile production from all around the world. It’s also one of the coolest museums in California that not a lot of people know about.

The museum has a range of different exhibitions that change on a regular basis. You’ll also find a selection of rotating quilts on display, as well as different textile-related artifacts.

Even if you’re not a quilting enthusiast, a visit to this museum is still worth it. It’s interesting, unique, and you’ll learn a lot about an art form that’s often overlooked.

Location: 520 S 1st St, San Jose, CA 95113, United States

Opening hours: 11 am – 5 pm (Fri – Sun)

Admission: $8 for adults, $6.50 for seniors and students, and free for children under 17.

35. Enjoy San Jose Nightlife

When the Sun goes down, San Jose comes alive. And like most major cities, there are a lot of things to do in downtown San Jose after dark. From cocktails bars and pubs to live music and nightclubs. Most of the action takes place around San Pedro Square and the SoFA district south of Market Street.

Start your night at San Pedro Square Market, a food hall with over 20 different vendors ranging from Indian cuisine to wood-fired pizza. Once you’ve had your fill, walk over to Gordon Biersch Brewing Company for a few beers brewed on-site.

For live music, check out The Ritz. And if you want to dance the night away, head to Loft Bar & Bistro, Pure Nightclub, or Temple Nightclub.

No matter what you’re looking for, there’s sure to be something to do in San Jose after dark.

In Summary

San Jose is a great city with plenty to see and do. From exploring quirky attractions to enjoying the nightlife, you’ll never be bored in this California city. So if you’re looking for things to do in San Jose, be sure to add these 35 to your list.