15 Best Things To Do in San Jose

San Jose or The city of San Jose is famous for its thriving tech industry and it has also earned the nickname of “Capital of Silicon Valley”. Living in San Jose is quite expensive and only rich and affluent people can think of purchasing a property in this city. 

The city of San Jose is the third largest in California and tenth in the USA when it comes to the population of the city.  San Jose’s history is not just rich but vibrant too as it includes Mexicans and Spanish also.  The city of San Jose offers a lot for the tourists as it has beautiful parks, museums, markets and many other attractions. 

Here are 15 things to do in San Jose, United States:

1. Get inspired at the Tech Museum of Innovation

Started in a garage, the Tech Museum of Innovation turned to be very popular among the youth and 8 years later, it has been shifted to a 132000 square foot premises. The main purpose of the museum is to inspire the youth so that they can work for making the world a better place to live. It is a good place to be visited by the whole family as there is something for everyone.

2. Take your child to the Children’s Discovery Museum 

Children's Discovery museum - imageImage Source: wikipedia.org

This museum was opened in 1990 and the Child magazine has listed it as one of the top ten children museum in USA while the London Observer has listed it in one of the top 5 science centers of the world. The museum which has been visited by more than 7 million people addresses all the various needs of the children and that too, in an interactive manner. They keep on researching on the new methods to make sure that children get to learn the maximum when they make a visit in the museum. 

3. Dedicate some time to the ancient Egyptians at the Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum

This museum can easily be called a tribute to the ancient Egyptians as this museum has the highest number of items from ancient Egypt in the Western USA. The museum also has a planetarium which is quite impressive. The architecture of the museum also gives a feeling as if you are in ancient Egypt and not in USA.

4. You should take a walk in the Alum Rock Park and meet various animals

Situated in the foot of the Diablo Mountain Range, it is one of the oldest municipal parks of California. The park spans in the area of 740 acres where you can take a jog, walk or cycle or you can also have a picnic planned with your family. However, there are good chances that you may also get to see wild animals in the park such as deer, bobcats, mountain lions and others.

5. Enjoy quality time with family at Happy Hollow Park & Zoo 

Enjoy quality time with family at happy hollow park & zoo - imageImage source: wikimedia.org

A pretty good place to enjoy some quality time with the family, it is a small amusement part which stretches in the area of 16 acres and has nearly 150 animals in its zoo. It also has some amusement rides such as roller coaster, carousel, etc., and visitors can also enjoy a puppet show.

6. Buy whatever you want at the San Jose Flea Market

The origin of the San Jose Flea Market dates back to 1960 and here you can find stalls of almost every item of your need. After shopping you can dine at any of the eating joints and take a ride of mini-ferris or carousel. In 1960, it started with just 20 sellers but now there are 1000-2000 sellers who do business here on Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday as the market opens on these days only. As per an estimate, nearly more than 4 million visitors come to the market every year.

7. Get the feel of Japan in San Jose by visiting Japantown

Earlier, the Japantown was situated next to the Chinatown but during the World War II, the residents of Japantown were shifted in the camps. After the war, many Japanese settled in different area of the city but the ethnicity of the Japantown is still being maintained by the locals who are running the restaurants and businesses as per Japanese taste and traditions.

8. Study the history of Vietnamese Americans at Viet Museum

The Viet Museum which is also known as the Museum of the Boar People and the Republic of Vietnam gives an insight of the history of Vietnamese Americans. Three permanent exhibitions are displayed in this non-profit museum, the first one (1950-75), the second one (1975-96) and the third one takes into consideration the Vietnamese Americans of today.

9. Get surrounded by roses at the Municipal Rose Garden

This is definitely one of the best places for giving rest to your senses as it is home to huge number of roses – more than 4000 of 189 varieties planted in five and half acres of land, and they are spreading their fragrance since 1927. It is undoubtedly one of the biggest rose gardens of the world and the varieties will increase further as the rose cultivators are trying to develop the new hybrids on a regular basis. Its extraordinary beauty has made it a popular choice for wedding venue and all these properties make it a must visit attraction.

10. Get everything fresh at the San Pedro Square Market, San Jose, CA

This is one market which is very popular not only among the locals but also among the tourists and the reason being the freshness of the food items. It feels as if all the food is coming on the table straight from the farm and it can’t get fresher than this. The market also offers the option of buying arts and crafts, bakery items and coffee.    

11. Learn about the Portuguese history at the Portuguese Historical Museum

This is also one of the most important points of the history of San Jose and it imparts knowledge about how the life used to be in 20th century in Santa Clara valley. The first imperio was built in 1915 to honor the Holy Spirit and soon it became a religious hub and this historical museum is replica of the former.

12. Play Golf At Shoreline Park or indulge in water sports

The Shoreline Park was bought by the city of Mountview in 1968 and used for the landfill purposes till 1983, when it was thought of to develop the land for th recreational purposes. Along with other facilities, the park has a 18-hole golf course and it also has artificial lake which is spanned in an area of 50 acres and visitors can enjoy various activities here such as kayaking, canoeing, windsurfing and various other sports. Long trail is also available for the jogging or walking purposes.

13. Unleash the artist at the San Jose Institute of Contemporary Art

The San Jose Institute of Contemporary Art which was founded in 1980 has three art galleries and visitors of all age groups can visit here and enjoy the art work and appreciate it. The exhibitions can be organized for both the individuals as well as the groups. Visiting the San Jose Institute of Contemporary Art is something the art lovers can’t miss as lectures of artists, exhibition tours, art auctions, musical performances and many other activities are also organized. 

14. Visit a different kind of museum - San Jose Museum of Quilts & Textiles 

Visit a different kind of museum- san jose museum of quilts & textiles - imageImage Source: wikimedia.org

It is a museum of different kind as it is the first museum which is working for exhibiting the complicated art of quilts and textiles. The museum which was set up in 1977, showcases the collection of over 550 quilts, garments and textiles and all of these have been created by the artists from the 20th and 21st centuries. There is also a library in the museum which contains around 500 books which talk about the origin, history and techniques of this art form. Not only this, classes and lectures are also organized by the museum for the adults as well as children and tours are also organized quite a good times in a month.

15. Shopping at Santana Row is something you can’t miss

Travelling is almost incomplete without shopping and the city of San Jose offers many options for the shopping lovers and Santana Row is one of them. There are quite good number of branded shops along with small local ones as well and twenty restaurants to dig your teeth in tasty delicacies. If you want more entertainment, you can watch a movie in the movie theatre or if you want to relax your senses than you have the option of choosing any spa from the 9 spas available at Santana Row. This place has already earned many awards for its beautiful and remarkable design and it has to be on your list of places to visit whenever you go to the city of San Jose.


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Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in San Jose, California

Must see places in San Jose ranked on popularity. Here is the complete list of best attractions in San Jose and point of interests to visit.

  1. Cathedral Basilica Of St. Joseph

    #1 of 1603 Things To Do in San Jose
    Cathedral Basilica Of St. Joseph

    Tags: Art And Culture, Church, Religious Site, Architecture

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

    Timings: 07:30 am - 06:00 pm Details

    This stunning and historic site is worth a visit while in San Jose. The name of the church and its patron saint also happen to be the name of the city making it a very important landmark there. The si...Read more

  2. Winchester Mystery House

    #2 of 1603 Things To Do in San Jose
    Winchester Mystery House

    Tags: Art And Culture, Museum, History Museum, Educational Site

    Address: 525 S Winchester Blvd, San Jose, CA 95128, UnitedStates

    Timings: 09:00 am - 05:00 pm Details

    The Winchester Mystery House is a weird and wonderful place in San Jose. This spooky attraction is a definite must visit if you are looking for something quite unique to do on your trip. It was said t...Read more

  3. The Peralta Adobe

    #3 of 1603 Things To Do in San Jose
    The Peralta Adobe

    Tags: Art And Culture, History Museum, Historical Site, Heritage Building

    Address: 180 W St John St San Jose, CA 95110, USA

    Timings: 12:00 pm - 05:00 pm Details

    This old house, which is the oldest building in San Jose, once belonged to a soldier in the Spanish Army, Luiz Maria Peralta. This beautiful, rustic, charming home has been perfectly preserved for peo...Read more

  4. Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum

    #4 of 1603 Things To Do in San Jose
    Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum

    Tags: Art And Culture, Museum, History Museum, Educational Site

    Address: 1660 Park Avenue San jose, CA-95195, USA

    Timings: 09:00 am - 05:00 pm Details

    If you are looking for some culture and history in San Jose, you will not be disappointed by its Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum. This stunning museum has great displays and a lot to see and do. Whether i...Read more

  5. The Tech Museum Of Innovation

    #5 of 1603 Things To Do in San Jose
    The Tech Museum Of Innovation

    Tags: Museum, Children Museum, Educational Site, Specialty Museum

    Address: 201 S Market St, San Jose, CA 95113, USA

    Timings: 10:00 am - 05:00 pm Details

    A very unique museum, the Tech Museum of Innovation is a fascinating place to visit in the city of San Jose. This new and fresh experience is a must have for anyone who loves technology. There is a wi...Read more

  6. Children's Discovery Museum Of San Jose

    #6 of 1603 Things To Do in San Jose
    Children's Discovery Museum Of San Jose

    Tags: Museum, Science Museum, Children Museum, Educational Site

    Address: 180 Woz Way, San Jose, CA-95110, USA

    Timings: 10:00 am - 05:00 pm Details

    The little ones will love this lovely treat in San Jose. Museums all over the world are turning interactive to aid learning and the Children’s Discovery Museum opitimizes this exact thought proc...Read more

  7. Guadalupe River Park And Gardens

    #7 of 1603 Things To Do in San Jose
    Guadalupe River Park And Gardens

    Tags: Outdoors, Garden, Park, Play Ground

    Address: 438, Coleman Avenue, SanJose, CA-95110,USA

    Timings: 24-hrs Details

    San Jose is that gorgeous city with its extraordinary number of parks and gardens. This lovely park and garden area is another addition to the many amazing, verdant places to see in the city. This par...Read more

  8. California Theatre

    #8 of 1603 Things To Do in San Jose
    California Theatre

    Tags: Art And Culture, Entertainment, Performance, Theatre

    Address: 345 S 1st St, San Jose, CA, United States ‎

    Timings: 10:00 am - 05:00 pm Details

    California has that nostalgic, old worldly appearance that is sure to send the traveller back in time. The theatre often plays host to the performances of Opera San Jose and the Silicon Valley Symphon...Read more

  9. Happy Hollow Park And Zoo

    #9 of 1603 Things To Do in San Jose
    Happy Hollow Park And Zoo

    Tags: Amusement Park, Ranch, Garden, Park

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

    Timings: 10:00 am - 05:00 pm Details

    The Happy Hollow Park and Zoo is another great family entertainment place in the city of San Jose. It is a zoo and an amusement park in one enormous complex. If you are travelling with kids, this mult...Read more

  10. Japanese Friendship Garden

    #10 of 1603 Things To Do in San Jose
    Japanese Friendship Garden

    Tags: Garden, Park, Play Ground, Walking Area

    Address: 1300 Senter Rd, San Jose, CA, United States

    Timings: 10:00 am - 04:00 pm Details

    San Jose is a tranquil place to relax and what better way to do it than in the Japanese Friendship Garden. This lovely place in Kelley Park is a great way to kill a few hours in the city. The landscap...Read more

  11. San Jose Museum Of Art

    #11 of 1603 Things To Do in San Jose
    San Jose Museum Of Art

    Tags: Art And Culture, Art Museum, Museum, Educational Site

    Address: 110 S Market St, San Jose, CA-95110, USA

    Timings: 11:00 am - 05:00 pm Details

    This Art museum, founded in 1969, has a very interesting collection of Modern Art. Eccentric pieces from the world over form a part of this wonderful collection. With over 2400 amazing paintings in th...Read more

  12. Cinnabar Hills Golf Club

    #12 of 1603 Things To Do in San Jose
    Cinnabar Hills Golf Club

    Tags: Sport, Golf Course

    Address: 23600 McKean Rd, San Jose, CA-95141

    Timings: 06:00 am - 09:00 pm Details

    If you are in San Jose for a business meeting or just want to try your hand at this fascinating sport, the Cinnabar Hills Golf Club is a great public golf club worth trying out. The location and the c...Read more

  13. Heritage Rose Garden

    #13 of 1603 Things To Do in San Jose
    Heritage Rose Garden

    Tags: Garden, Picnic Spot

    Address: San Jose, CA 95110, USA

    Timings: 08:00 am - 08:00 pm Details

    San Jose is the city of many amazing parks and gardens and the San Jose Heritage Rose Garden only adds to its charming beauty. The garden is sure to make you want to “stop and smell the roses&rd...Read more

  14. Los Gatos Creek Trail

    #14 of 1603 Things To Do in San Jose
    Los Gatos Creek Trail

    Tags: Trail, Garden, Park, Nature

    Address: Los Gatos Creek County Park, 1250 Dell Ave., Campbell, CA 95008

    Timings: 08:00 am - 05:00 pm Details

    Los Gatos Creek Trail and County Park is one of the many amazing idyllic sports worth visiting in the city. The area is verdant and lively making it a refreshing place for the weary traveler. Running,...Read more

  15. Raging Waters

    #15 of 1603 Things To Do in San Jose
    Raging Waters

    Tags: Amusement Park, Theme Park, River, Entertainment

    Address: 2333 S White Rd, San Jose, CA 95148, United States

    Timings: 10:30 am - 05:00 pm Details

    Raging Waters is a very well-known Water Park chain in California. The San Jose is a refreshing treat in the sunny place. The rides and slides include the Barracuda Blaster, The Blue Thunder, The Drag...Read more

Tourist Attractions Near San Jose

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Top San Jose Activities And Tours

Explore the best things to do in San Jose. These are the most preferred tourist activities.

Find more places to see in San Jose

  • Peralta Adobe & Fallon House Historic Site

    175 W Saint John St

    Historic and Protected Sites
  • Bayside Canning

    1200 Hope St

    Historic and Protected Sites
  • Roberto - Sunol Adobe

    770 Lincoln Ave

    Historic and Protected Sites
  • Dia De Portugal Festival

    Historic and Protected Sites
  • Rengstorff House

    3070 N Shoreline Blvd

    Historic and Protected Sites
  • Mission San Jose

    43300 Mission Blvd

    Historic and Protected Sites
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  • Almaden Lake Park

    6099 Winfield Blvd

  • Calero Lake Park

    23205 McKean Rd

  • Evergreen Lake

  • South Lake Tahoe

  • Cottonwood Lake

  • Los Alamitos Percolation Ponds

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  • Children's Discovery Museum of San Jose

    180 Woz Way

  • Almaden Quicksilver Mining Museum

    21350 Almaden Rd

  • Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum

    1660 Park Ave

  • San Jose Museum of Quilts & Textiles

    520 S 1st St

  • Youth Science Institute

    16260 Penitencia Creek Rd

  • Lace Museum

    552 S Murphy Ave

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  • Pump It Up of San Jose

    1830 Hillsdale Ave

    Amusement Parks
  • Dead Time Dreams Haunted House

    2501 Tully Rd

    Amusement Parks
  • Raging Waters

    2333 S White Rd

    Amusement Parks
  • Jungle Island

    5401 Camden Ave

    Amusement Parks
  • Nickel City

    1711 Branham Ln

    Arcades Amusement Parks
  • Shoot Zombies Now

    2542 Monterey Hwy

    Amusement Parks
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  • Hookah Castle

    1920 Camden Ave

    Bars Restaurants
  • Red Room Hookah Lounge

    2902 Almaden Expy

  • Splash Video Dance Bar

    65 Post St

    Bars Night Clubs
  • Cuetopia Billiard Cafe

    4700 Almaden Expy

    Bars Billiard and Pool Restaurants
  • Red Stag Lounge

    1711 W San Carlos St

    Bars Mexican Night Clubs
  • Freddie J's Bar & Lounge

    97 E Santa Clara St

    Bars Restaurants Music and Show Venues
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  • Bay 101

    1801 Bering Dr

    Casinos and Gaming Chinese
  • Fairgrounds Bingo

    344 Tully Rd

    Casinos and Gaming
  • Casino M8trix

    360 Saratoga Ave

    Casinos and Gaming
  • Bay Area Casino Parties

    1524 Branham Ln

    Casinos and Gaming
  • Lets Play Party Casino

    68 Roseview Court

    Casinos and Gaming
  • Garden City

    1887 Matrix Blvd

    Casinos and Gaming
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  • Kelley Park

    1300 Senter Rd

    Natural Parks
  • New Almaden Quicksilver Mine Trail

    Natural Parks
  • Sanborn County Park

    16055 Sanborn Rd

    Natural Parks
  • Baylands Park

    999 E Caribbean Dr

    Natural Parks
  • Castle Rock State Park

    15000 Skyline Blvd

    Natural Parks
  • Mariposa Park

    301 Mariposa Ave

    Natural Parks
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  • Watson Park

    N 22ND St

    Playgrounds Dog Parks
  • Roy M Butcher Dog Park

    3950 Camden Ave

    Dog Parks
  • William Street Park

    E William St

    Playgrounds Dog Parks
  • Discovery Dog Park

    400 Park Ave

    Dog Parks
  • Jeffrey Fontana Park

    Golden Oak Way

    Playgrounds Dog Parks
  • Raleigh Linear Dog Park

    Dog Parks
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  • Pfeiffer Beach

  • Monterey Mushrooms

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  • Los Alamitos Creek Trail

    6602 Camden Ave

  • Guadalupe River Trail

    438 Coleman Ave

  • Thompson Creek Trail

    2980 E Capitol Expy

  • Muddy Buddy

  • Calero Creek Trail

    Camden Ave

  • Coyote Creek Trail, Silver Creek Entrance

    6039 Silver Creek Valley Rd

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What To Do in San Jose: Day-Wise Ideas

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