Silicon Valley is often thought of the land of tech startups, investor money, and Teslas. All of that is correct which is why people in tech often envision themselves as a young entrepreneur trying to launch their app, or as a promising, upcoming developer who just landed a sweet gig at the valley’s hot new startup. If you’re looking to take a tour of the area, check out these top things to do in Silicon Valley.
The Intel Museum is located at Intel’s headquarters in Santa Clara, CA. It allows you to look back at the history of Intel, including the many products that they have released which have helped shape computers as we know them. It is completely free of admission but is only open on weekdays and Saturdays with the exceptions of any holidays.
Apple Campus / Corporate Store
While you can’t just go cruising through the Apple campus, you are able to pop into the campus store where most employees and people in the area pick up their Apple products. While the campus is no longer the basis for most of Apple’s work, as they moved into their new campus in 2017, there are still buildings used for extra office space and R&D type of projects.
Steve Jobs Boyhood Home / Apple Garage
While Apple was not actually founded in the garage, nor were there ever computers built there, it was a popular hangout for the founders of Apple. While Steve Jobs was still living there, you could find him, Steve Wozniak, and Ronald Wayne hanging out. While it may not have the fabled history of where Apple was founded, it’s definitely a place of pilgrimage for young tech workers and entrepreneurs and you’ll often find many people trying to get a photo of themselves with the house.
Google Visitor Center / Android Statues
If you’re a fan of Google’s Android mobile operating system, then you’re going to know what these statues represent. Google, until recently, named all of its versions after popular dessert items such as Froyo, Eclair, Jellybean, Marshmallow and more. There is also a visitor’s center next to the statues where you can purchase Google-branded merchandise and devices.
Unlike the Apple Garage, the HP Garage is where the company Hewlitt-Packard was founded. Today it is a private, invite-only, museum which means, unfortunately, the public can not go in. You can easily see the garage from the sidewalk and take photos of it. There’s a sign nearby that explains that this is widely considered to be the birthplace of Silicon Valley.
Facebook Like Sign
If you’re a user of any sort of technology, then you already know what this symbol means. The only major branding outside of Facebook headquarters, it’s not uncommon to see a line of people waiting to take their photo in front of the sign. Take a peek behind the sign for a special throwback to an older company in Silicon Valley.
Impossible Foods is one of the newer kids on the block, being founded in 2011 and their signature product, the Impossible Burger, launched in July 2016. Since then it has had its share of controversy in the animal rights community, but they continue to make massive inroads into the meat market and have secured huge partnerships with companies like Burger King and White Castle. It won’t be long before you start seeing the Impossible Burger showing up in grocery stores as they are testing it in certain ones already.
Buck’s Of Woodside
This restaurant is iconic in the history of Silicon Valley and has been the host of some of the biggest deals and tech demos. Early demonstrations of PayPal were held in these booths and the deal for Hotmail was inked at the restaurant. It’s not uncommon to see hopeful entrepreneurs showing off their app or discussing funding with VCs as Sandhill Road is just down the street. It’s definitely worth checking out the interior design and grabbing a burger!
YouTube is actually much closer to San Fransisco than Silicon Valley proper, but given the massive behemoth that it is, and the fact that it’s not too far of a drive, it’s worth adding to your list. Things have been much more locked down since the shooting that occurred in April 2018. While no one but the shooter was killed, they have definitely beefed up security since then. Most of the major entrances are behind gates and there is security patrolling the area, even outside of normal business hours.
Where else would you go if you were in Silicon Valley? Let us know in the comments down below.