14 Things To Do In Stanford, United States

Must see in stanfordImage Source: wikimedia.org



Stanford, which is census-designated place (CDP) is located in the Santa Clara county, California and it is basically known for being the home of Stanford University. The most popular landmark of the area is The Dish. 

Stanford is adjacent to Palo Alto and while almost the establishments are on the land of Stanford, Stanford University Medical Center, the Stanford Shopping Center, and the Stanford Research Park are situated on the land of Palo Alto.

Here are 14 things to do in Stanford, United States:

1. Watch the complete view of Stanford University from the Hoover Tower

The Hoover tower’s construction got completed in 1941 which was also the 50th anniversary of Stanford University. The 285 feet (87m) structure which was inspired from cathedral tower at Salamanca, stands on the campus of Stanford University, Stanford, California and is home to Hoover Institution Library and Archives. Herbert Hoover founded this archive collection before he became the President. He collected a wide range of materials related to 20th century and donated to Stanford, where he was also a student at one point of time. The first nine floors have library while the next three floors are used for official purposes.

Usually 200 people visit Hoover tower per day, a nominal fee is charged from non-students and non-faculties, the complete view of Stanford University campus can be seen from the Hoover tower.

2. Discover the beauty of cactus plants in Arizona Garden

This garden is also known as Arizona Cactus Garden or Cactus Garden and as the name suggests it is home to cactus plants and succulents. The garden is located at the campus of Stanford University and it can easily be accessed as it is open for public. Presently, the garden is home to almost 500 cacti and succulents in 58 beds. It was between 1880 and 1883 that the garden was planted as it was a part of bigger gardens which was supposed to be next to the new residence of Jane and Leland Stanford. However the house was never built and the garden wasn’t maintained after 1920. It was in 1997 that the restoration started and still going on.

3. Take a sneak peek into history at Iris & B. Gerald Cantor Center for Visual Arts

It was earlier known as Stanford University Museum of Art and is presently popular with the name of Cantor Arts Center. This complimentary art museum is on Stanford University’s campus in California. Set up in the year 1894, it has as large space as 130,000 sf and contains sculpture gardens as well. The museum has an encyclopedic collection, including varieties from antiquity to ethnographic art and modern to contemporary. It features more than 500 African artworks and lays emphasis on Sub-Saharan Africa’s figurative art. Nearly 70 artworks of this collection have been put on display. Apart from this, Oceanic and Indonesian collections here include more than 450 objects as well as textiles along with some other exhibits. It is the abode of Auguste Rodin works’ biggest collection that consists of more than 400 works.

4. Experience the beauty of architectural crown of the University - Stanford Memorial Church

The Stanford Memorial Church which is also referred as Memchu was built by Jane Stanford as a memorial to her husband, Leland during the American Renaissance. The church has been designed by architect Charles A. Coolidge and it is being called as the architectural crown jewel of Stanford University.

The church stands in the center of the Stanford University and the Stanfords wanted that the church should become, "the centerpiece of the university complex".

5. Spend some quality time at Lake Lagunita

This artificial lake is situated at Stanford campus’ western side in close proximity to Lagunita residences. Avail yourself of lovely perimeter of the lake and go for walking or jogging on a track of 1.4 km. A number of row houses and dormitory residences along with some fraternities are situated close to the lake; such as Enchanted Broccoli Forest (EBF), Lagunita residences, Jerry, Kappa Alpha, Roble Hall and Narnia.

Talking about the wildlife at Lake Lagunita, it becomes the breeding ground for California tiger salamanders in winters and other than this, Pacific chorus frog and Western toad can also be seen here while the variety of birds include Great egret, Great blue heron and Mallard.

6. Visit in October to know more about the founders - Stanford Mausoleum

The remains of the founders of the university, Leland Stanford, Jr. and his parents Leland and Jane Stanford are kept in the Stanford Mausoleum which stands north-west to the university campus in the Stanford University Arboretum. Originally, the Stanfords wanted to make a family mansion but after the death of their son they decided to set up a university in their son’s name. The mausoleum is opened once in a year, usually in October during the reunion weekend under the activities performed on annual Founders’ Day.

7. Explore exhibits related to technology and inventions at Museum of American Heritage

Museum of American Heritage is aimed at conservation and exhibition of mechanical and electrical technology along with inventions between 1750s and 1950s. It boasts of an extensive array of artifacts and people usually don’t have access to them. Visitors can see the exhibit of Thomas Edison and His Rivals: Bringing Electricity to America. Besides, there are five rooms housing displays which change more than once yearly. There are artifacts selected from local collectors or the collection of the museum. Williams House has six rooms showcasing permanent exhibits that comprise of a general store dating back to 1920s, Automobile Garage and Workshop, functioning print shop and a kitchen from early 20th century.

8. Find serenity and peace at St. Thomas Aquinas Church

The construction of this church began in the year 1901 and finished in 1902. It’s the oldest church of California’s Palo Alto and has attained significance as a historical landmark. What makes it an iconic and signature building in the downtown is its unique Carpenter Gothic Victorian style. Two other churches are included in this church and they are named St. Albert the Great Church and Our Lady of the Rosary Church.

9. Go for hiking at scenic Thornewood Open Space Preserve

Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District operates this small regional park which avails vacationers with around 1.5 miles of equestrian and hiking trails. Opt for Schilling Lake Trail and make your way to Schilling Lake which is a protected wildlife habitation. It got its name Thornewood after the developers Julian and Edna Thorne. They constructed a house and bordered it with lovely gardens which consisted of Schilling Lake that found its name after August Schilling land in close proximity.

10. Witness the modern technique of time-keeping at Stanford Clock Tower

The Stanford clock tower was built in 1983 after a trustee William Kimball gave donation for it. It is located at the “Circle of Death” on the campus of Stanford University and it holds a clock which was built by Seth Thomas Clock Company in 1901. The clock was originally used in Stanford Memorial Church’s large belfry but during the 1906 earthquake the belfry collapsed. Earlier during 1950s and 1960s due to a prank made by any student, the chimes were heard to ring 13 times at noon. However, in 1997, the engineering students of the university installed a temperature-compensating pendulum to get rid of the errors in time-keeping that take place due to changes in temperature.

11. You just can’t miss the work of Frank Lloyd Wright – Hanna Honeycomb House

The house which is also known as Hanna House located on the Stanford University campus is the first work of Frank Lloyd Wright in the Bay area and it has been identified as National Historic Landmark. This house can easily be called as Frank’s first and best work in hexagonal design. The house is based on the design of honeycomb of a bee and it is a six-sided house. It was made for Paul R. Hanna and his wife Jean, two educators who worked with Stanford for many years.

12. Have a rejuvenating day at Stanford Shopping Center

Stanford Shopping Center is an ideal spot for having a fun-filled day while taking a stroll, immersing in window shopping, enjoying fragrance of flowers in various gardens, food sampling and so on. It’s a chic open-air mall and well renowned in Palo Alto. There is a lot to do in Stanford Shopping Center and it’s much more than a regular shopping spot. It offers a vibrant idyllic setting that shoppers just can’t resist. There are beautiful sculptures, dazzling fountains and over 140 retailers and restaurants which make it a must visit place to see on your tour.

13. Visit one of the esteemed universities of the world – Stanford University

Even if you are not able to get admission in the Stanford University, still you can visit its campus as there are various tour programs for the visitors. A visitor can either pick a self-guided tour map and take a tour of the campus at his own leisure or go for a student-led Campus Walking tour. Visit the museums, church, memorials which are situated inside the campus and know about the history of the university.

14. See the beauty of Papua New Guinea Sculpture Garden

It was 1994, when a graduate student of Department of Anthropology at Stanford University made two groups of men for carving The New Guinea Sculpture Garden at Stanford University. The name of the student was Jim Mason and this garden is located in the Stanford University near the dormitory. Other than wooden and stone artworks, the garden also has landscaping and flowers, plants which give a beautiful look to the garden.

Author: Meghana Agashe
Oscillating between reality and day-dreaming, Meghana is a journalist by education and a travel-blogger by profession. The eternal love for exploring different places and cuisines, the urge to interact with people across cultures and the thirst for a...

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

  1. # 1 of 68 Things To Do in Stanford | Added 21 times in trip plans
    Avery Aquatic Center

    Tags: Swimming Pool

    Address: 235 Sam MacDonald Mall, Stanford, CA 94305, USA

    Timings: 10:00 am - 02:00 pm Details

    Avery Aquatic Center is a public swimming pool located in Stanford, CA, USA. The whole pool area is gorgeous and very well-equipped. There are two large swimming pools here. Both of them are 50 meters...Read more

  2. # 2 of 68 Things To Do in Stanford | Added 2 times in trip plans
    Jimmy V Sports Cafe

    Tags: Food And Drinks, Cafe

    Address: 641 Campus Drive, Stanford, CA 94305, USA

    Timings: 07:00 am - 04:00 pm Details

    Comfort, good food and a hot cup of coffee will be offered to you at the Jimmy V Sports Cafe. This is a superb cafeteria where you can sit with your friends and have the fun of dining while enjoying y...Read more

  3. # 3 of 68 Things To Do in Stanford | Added 6 times in trip plans
  4. # 4 of 68 Things To Do in Stanford | Added 6 times in trip plans
    Stanford Bookstore Image
    Timings: 11:00 am - 06:00 pm Details
    Google Reviews
    Firstname Lastname

    Great customer service and the store is huge. Although at first it can be hard to figure out where to find what you want, the signs are pretty easy to follow and the employees are a great help as well...

    Read more
  5. # 5 of 68 Things To Do in Stanford
    Wilbur Field Image

    Address: Campus Drive East

    Google Reviews
    Jorge Avelar-Lopez

    Large field thats great for any sporting activity; ultimate frisbee, soccer, you name it. Theres a parking located adjacent to park making it very easy to access the park as well.

    Read more
  6. # 6 of 68 Things To Do in Stanford | Added 5 times in trip plans
    J. Henry Meyer Memorial Library Image

    Address: 560 Escondido Mall

    Google Reviews
    Andrew Duchi

    No longer a traditional library, Meyer provides great collaborative study spaces and a multimedia lab for students.

    Read more
  7. # 7 of 68 Things To Do in Stanford | Added 4 times in trip plans
    Stanford University Department Of Mechanical Engineering Image

    Address: 440 Escondido Mall, Stanford, CA 94305, USA

    Google Reviews

    Lovely place Good place to study

    Read more
  8. # 8 of 68 Things To Do in Stanford | Added 10 times in trip plans
  9. # 9 of 68 Things To Do in Stanford | Added 13 times in trip plans
    Papua New Guinea Sculpture Garden Image

    Address: Stanford University

    Google Reviews
    Duncan O. Clements

    A very cool little spot hidden away and kind of hard to find. There are several benches to sit on and it is very shady, quiet and peaceful.

    Read more

Find more attractions and places to visit in Stanford under these things to do categories.

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    737 Frenchmans Rd

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  • Lake Lagunita

    300 Lane L

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  • 3 Pigs BBQ

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  • The Oxford

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  • Aquamaids Bingo

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  • Palace Club

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  • 3 Of A Kind Casino Events

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  • 4S Casino Party Suppliers

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  • Edgewood County Park

    10 Old Stage Coach Rd

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    16055 Sanborn Rd

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  • Big Basin Redwoods State Park

    21600 Big Basin Way

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  • Joinville Park

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    3100 Calaveras Rd

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  • Cowell Ranch Beach

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    95 Kelly Ave

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    152 Poplar St

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  • Guadalupe River Trail

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