Top Tech Sights In Silicon Valley (2023)

If you’re tired of technology taking over your life, take back control in Silicon Valley, where you can see the 10 top tech sights of interest to any geek and nerd.

Google is headquartered in Mountain View, Facebook in Menlo Park, Yahoo! and Twitter are in Sunnyvale – all suburbs within a half-hour of San Jose. But Silicon Valley –- silicon being a key component of computer chips — is just the tech name given to California’s Santa Clara Valley. With the only international airport and nightlife for miles –- and over 100 local tech companies according to the Silicon Valley Business Journal — San Jose is its de facto capital.

So, in homage to all the ups and downs the tech industry is facing, here’s an itinerary that geeks, STEM kids –- or anyone who owns a computer – can follow to discover how technology and the software industry really work in Silicon Valley.

1. San Jose Attracts Innovators

Top Tech Sights In Silicon Valley (1)

Follow @sj_downtown and you’ll find the SoFA Arts District is a walkable collection of funky community spaces, outdoor cafes, public trolleys, and back alleys with underserved homeless. Judging by the rides and mixology, the Santana Row shopping district serves more of the 1% than most places. Within a day, I understand why students, singles and entrepreneurs like the city’s diversity.

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2. The Tech Illuminates Technology

Stay downtown for the Tech Museum of Innovation, a big, flexible space housing social robot assembly stations, video walls, exhibits, music stations and touch screens. The Tech is wicked smart, using the latest technologies to the fullest while keeping education as fun as it should be.

3. Find Out What’s Inside at the Intel Museum

The small Intel Museum explains how the company’s founders, Robert Noyce and Gordon Moore, turned their vision for semiconductor memory products into the world’s first microprocessor.It has big touch screens, a fun Name Machine to create letters in the binary code of 0s and 1s, and a kiosk where you can send digital composite photo postcards to friends. Discover how only 40 Finalists emerge from the 1,600 entrants to the Intel Science and Engineering Fair competition. In the simulated Intel Fab (sterile microchip fabrication lab), kids can don “bunnysuits” to keep outside dirt from contaminating the space, then go to work. It’s totally free and fun for grades 2-12.

Be sure to read up on Gordon Moore and his now-famous “Moore’s Law” (1965); his name is on every donor wall at the San Jose attractions I visited, so I am nominating him for a statue outside City Hall.

4. The Past Informs the Future at Computer History Museum

Plan a day at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View. More traditional, designed for ages 10+, it’s for visitors with patience. Not so patient? Catch the 4-minute introductory video, follow their “1 Hour Visit” or “Insanely Great Steve Jobs Visit” self-guided tours, attend a lecture, watch a demo, or walk with a docent to get a taste of what it’s all about. At our visit, the Girls Make Games camp was designing video games; the temp exhibit was a look inside Google’s first autonomous car; and their gift shop (motherboard magnets? Twitter mugs?) is better than the Apple Company Store in Cupertino.

5. Androids at the Googleplex

Top Tech Sights In Silicon Valley (2)

(Video) Why Silicon Valley is the best place in the world (for software engineers).

Although these are largely closed tech campuses, outside Google’s campus at 1891 Landings Drive, Mountain View 94043, you can do selfies with a big green Android, or a colorful Jellybean, Cupcake, Gingerbread Man, Oreo, Pie and more sculptures of the company’s mobile operating systems. Let the kids google them to find out what year the sculpture studio Themendous created each one and what technological breakthrough it represents.

6. The Tech Mini: Childrens Discovery Museum

Ages 2-10 will like the San Jose Childrens Discovery Museum, funded by Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak among others. In addition to a health food grocery store and climb-aboard fire engine, there’s a patented Pinscreen where shapes are made through pressure, and a local mammoth fossil in a 3D rendered habitat.

7. Dining Collectivity: SV Foodies

Tech wants more than having Moveable Feast menus on Twitter. At collectives like the indoor/outdoor San Pedro Square Market, you can order almost anything from a sushi taco to a bison burger, a craft beer to a dirty martini. Let the kids watch for a text message when the food is ready to be picked up. Our favorite aspect of the Market is community: Karaoke nights, fitness workouts, painting classes and seasonal festivals bring everyone together.

8. Stop by Tech Shop and See What’s Being Made

In the center of SoFA and the city’s maker movement, Tech Shop was a cherished, member-supported workshop packed with the latest software, 3D printers and CNC (computer numerically controlled) manufacturing tools. Now out of business, it’s being replaced by a new studio, TheShop.build. Like your dad’s afterschool shop classes, it’s where locals can create everything from toys to prom dresses, bicycles to Halloween costumes. Join a class, get a day pass, enroll kids 8-17 in a weeklong day camp, or just walk in for a free tour and you’ll get a thrill seeing how innovation starts here.

9. Tech Loves Retro and San Jose Does it Well

Top Tech Sights In Silicon Valley (3)
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That nostalgia celebrated by Throwback Thursday has kept institutions like Happy Hollow Park & Zoo going for more than 50 years. Along its rambling pathways are gentle roller coasters and a petting zoo –- perfect for Silicon Valley charity balls. Don’t ask about the larger-than-life Monopoly Board in a public park; the city rents out the enormous pieces and couples can get married on Go to Jail.

10. Tech Loves Sports

Mark Cuban? Steve Ballmer? We know tech money loves sports, and the San Jose Giants are proof. They play at the minor league Municipal Stadium, a 77-year-old complex where can you sit near Mark Zuckerberg and use Paypal to buy hotdogs or pinot. The San Francisco 49ers are settled into the $1.3 billion Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara; too bad for the kids that the next door Great America theme park will be closing during their games.

Trip Planning Details for Next Gen Tech Billionaires

If you haven’t raised enough early stage capital to get out to San Jose yet, here’s a virtual tour.

But if you have, remember that we stayed downtown at the 800-room Fairmont San Joseat 170 S. Market Street, San Jose, CA 95113 and had super assistance from Visit San Jose, the tourism development office. Taking the family to San Jose? CityHUNT is a team-building scavenger hunt company that hosts events across the country. They have teams all over America and internationally that will host an epic scavenger hunt for any celebration, and help you find more insider surprises in San Jose.

Dear Reader: This page may contain affiliate links which may earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase. Our independent journalism is not influenced by any advertiser or commercial initiative unless it is clearly marked as sponsored content. As travel products change, please be sure to reconfirm all details and stay up to date with current events to ensure a safe and successful trip.

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FAQs

Where are the high-tech industries including Silicon Valley? ›

Silicon Valley is a region in Northern California that serves as a global center for high technology and innovation. Located in the southern part of the San Francisco Bay Area, it corresponds roughly to the geographical areas San Mateo County and Santa Clara County.

What is high-tech Silicon Valley? ›

Silicon Valley is a global center of technological innovation located in the South San Francisco Bay Area of California. The area was named after the primary material found in computer microprocessors. Silicon Valley is home to dozens of major technology, software, and internet companies.

Is Palo Alto worth visiting? ›

Located just a short car journey from San Francisco and the beautiful coastal towns of northern California, it's a wonderful world-class city that's well worth stopping for a visit. Here are some of the best things to do in Palo Alto.

How many high-tech companies are in Silicon Valley? ›

As of August 2022, there are 30 companies with headquarters in Silicon Valley that make that Fortune 1000 list. There are also thousands of startup companies growing in Silicon Valley. With new companies being founded and others going out of business, the exact number of tech companies in Silicon Valley varies.

Where are the biggest tech hubs? ›

The Top Tech Hubs in the U.S.

Silicon Valley, in California's Bay Area, remains the most prominent (and expensive) U.S. tech hub, with a talent pool of nearly 380,000 tech workers. Washington D.C.

Which city in California has the most tech companies? ›

San Francisco is the heart of the global tech industry, and is the main reason why California is considered one of the best states for tech jobs. Tech workers in this Bay Area metropolis earn the highest salaries in the country at the biggest tech companies in the world.

What is the most high-tech place? ›

Tokyo. A world leader in innovation for decades, Tokyo has often been cited as the world's most advanced city for technology. In fact, Tokyo is home to many recognizable names in consumer and professional-grade electronics.

Who owns most of Silicon Valley? ›

Part 1: Who Owns Silicon Valley? Stanford University, Apple, Google, Cisco, Intel and several real estate companies are among Silicon Valley's top property owners according to an analysis of Santa Clara County assessor records for 2018.

What is the average tech salary in Silicon Valley? ›

As of Nov 13, 2022, the average annual pay for the Silicon Valley jobs category in San Jose is $95,399 a year. Just in case you need a simple salary calculator, that works out to be approximately $45.87 an hour. This is the equivalent of $1,834/week or $7,949/month.

Why is Palo Alto so famous? ›

Palo Alto is recognized as a global leader in cutting-edge technological development and is known as the "Birthplace of Silicon Valley.” This exciting mix of tradition and innovation makes Palo Alto an extraordinary destination for visitors.

What is Palo Alto most known for? ›

As the global center of technology and innovation, Palo Alto is the corporate headquarters for many world-class companies and research facilities such as VMWare, Hewlett-Packard, and Tesla.

Is Palo Alto a walkable city? ›

Palo Alto prides itself on being a walkable city with a robust network of bike lanes and paths.

Who is the richest big tech company? ›

Apple, the world's largest tech company by revenue, generated $294 billion in 2021. With over 585,000 tech companies, the U.S. has the largest technology sector by revenue in the world.

What are the 3 big tech companies? ›

The four or five largest American tech companies, themselves referred to as the Big Four or Big Five presently consists of Alphabet (Google), Amazon, Apple, and Meta (Facebook)—with Microsoft completing the Big Five.

What city has the most IT jobs? ›

Top 20 Tech Cities
CityIT Job Postings 2021
1Austin, TX64,481
2San Jose, CA98,315
3Dallas, TX156,358
4Atlanta, GA111,225
16 more rows
21 Mar 2022

What city has the most tech startups? ›

Silicon Valley/Bay Area, California

There is perhaps no more well-known startup city in the US than Silicon Valley. The Bay Area is the global epicenter for tech innovation and has been for decades.

Which city is tech capital of world? ›

San Francisco, California

Since 2thinknow defines the region by its largest neighboring city, San Francisco takes the top spot. It is the undeniable epicenter of all things tech, from its gigantic startup culture to its venture capital scene to its population of designers and programmers.

Where is the biggest IT hub in world? ›

TOP 10 the biggest tech hubs in the world in 2022
  • Bengaluru.
  • Hong Kong.
  • Tokyo.
  • Shanghai.
  • London.
  • Beijing.
  • Tel Aviv.
  • New York.
21 Mar 2022

Which city is IT hub in USA? ›

New York. New York has an established and thriving tech scene, with hundreds of thousands of its citizens working in technology. According to the 2021 Global Startup Ecosystem Report (GSER) published by Startup Genome, New York saw a total of US$ 10.2 billion in total early stage funding for startups.

Where is the tech hub in Los Angeles? ›

Silicon Beach is the Westside region of the Los Angeles metropolitan area that is home to more than 500 technology companies, including startups.

What is the biggest tech breakthrough? ›

10 Breakthrough Technologies
  • The end of passwords. For decades, we've needed passwords to do things online. ...
  • AI for protein folding. Nearly everything your body does, it does with proteins. ...
  • Proof of stake. Cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin use huge amounts of electricity. ...
  • Synthetic data for AI.
23 Feb 2022

Which city is the fastest growing tech hub? ›

Bengaluru has emerged as the world's fastest growing tech ecosystem in the world since 2016. Following Bengaluru, London, Munich, Berlin and Paris top the list too. According to Economic Times, the investment in the Karnataka capital of Bengaluru grew 5.4 times from US$1.3 Bil in 2016 to US$7.2 Bil in 2020.

Where are the biggest tech hubs in the US? ›

Top 25 Tech Hubs
  1. Austin, Texas. Austin, Texas nabbed the No.
  2. Dallas, Texas. Dallas, Texas boasts a population of 1.3 million, making it the third-largest city in Texas. ...
  3. Raleigh, North Carolina. ...
  4. San Jose, California. ...
  5. Charlotte, North Carolina. ...
  6. Seattle, Washington. ...
  7. San Francisco, California. ...
  8. Atlanta, Georgia. ...

Who is the youngest millionaire in Silicon Valley? ›

Alexandr Wang, the latest Silicon Valley wonder boy, is only 25 years old and has a net worth of more than a billion dollars.

How many millionaires are there in Silicon Valley? ›

Silicon Valley, according to the report, now has more than 76,000 millionaires and billionaires, and more than 12,000 households have more than $5 million in investable assets.

Is Silicon Valley for the rich? ›

Stratification of wealth

According to Joint Venture, the top quarter of Silicon Valley earners hold 92% of the region's wealth; the top 10% of earners hold 75% of the wealth. Last year, the average annual income in Silicon Valley was $170,000, and the median income was $138,000—more than double the national median.

Why tech salary is so high? ›

Forced digitization and work from home fueled the need for hiring tech talent for which organizations were willing to pay a little more, resulting in the average tech worker's salary to reach $104,566 in the U.S. — a 6.9% increase since 2020, the report found.

Where do it techs make the most money? ›

Average U.S. Tech Salaries by State
RankStateAverage hourly wage for tech workers
1Alabama$41.69
2Washington$58.96
3North Carolina$44.19
4Texas$45.04
6 more rows
16 Aug 2021

What is minimum wage in Silicon Valley? ›

As of January 1, 2023, the Federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour; California minimum wage is $15.50 per hour for employers with 26 or more employees and also $15.50 for employers with 25 or fewer employees; and Santa Clara's minimum wage is $17.20 per hour.

Where is Mark Zuckerberg's house Palo Alto? ›

The three-story Italianate-style villa at 51 Crescent Drive sits in Palo Alto's Crescent Park district, where Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg owns a 5,000-square-foot home that he bought for $7 million in 2011.

Are people in Palo Alto rich? ›

2. Old Palo Alto, Palo Alto, California. California is home to most of the wealthiest neighborhoods in the United States, and Old Palo Alto is the second richest in America. It's a historic neighborhood in the Northern California town of Palo Alto.

Is Palo Alto a wealthy city? ›

Buying a home in Palo Alto is no easy feat these days. This Bay Area city consistently ranks among the most expensive zip codes in the country, and according to a Bloomberg report, the city's residents are some of the country's most affluent.

Why is Palo Alto rich? ›

Palo Alto ranked high in luxury car dealers per capita, with companies like Tesla Motors making their home here.

What is the average income in Palo Alto? ›

Table
Population
Mean travel time to work (minutes), workers age 16 years+, 2016-202024.6
Income & Poverty
Median household income (in 2020 dollars), 2016-2020$174,003
Per capita income in past 12 months (in 2020 dollars), 2016-2020$97,307
54 more rows

What kind of people live in Palo Alto? ›

Palo Alto, CA Population & Demographics

Palo Alto's population is 67,019 with a slight population decline of . 0939%. The racial demographics in Palo Alto are 55.2% White, 32.5% Asian, 4.44% Hispanic, 4.26% mixed races, and 1.54% African American.

Why does Palo Alto have two downtowns? ›

"Palo Alto has two separate downtowns because it was originally two separate towns," said Steve Staiger, the historian for the Palo Alto Historical Association.

What percentage of Palo Alto is black? ›

The 5 largest ethnic groups in Palo Alto, CA are White (Non-Hispanic) (53%), Asian (Non-Hispanic) (33.2%), Two+ (Non-Hispanic) (5.52%), White (Hispanic) (3.35%), and Black or African American (Non-Hispanic) (1.89%).

Is Palo Alto cheaper than San Francisco? ›

Cost: Renting a 900 square foot furnished apartment in Palo Alto costs $3,624 per month on average. Comparatively, the same accommodations will cost around $3,705 per month in San Francisco. As a result, employees will likely demand higher wages.

What is the 2 Richest company in the world? ›

2. Saudi Aramco Market Cap ($2.33 trillion): It is the largest oil corporation in the world and accounts for more than half of Saudi Arabia's revenue. Aramco runs both an upstream and downstream portion. Its upstream division explores for and produces crude oil, condensate, natural gas, and natural gas liquids.

Which is the biggest IT company in USA? ›

Microsoft Corporation (MSFT)

With the Xbox video gaming consoles, Microsoft Surface touchscreen PCs, and associated services, it is also involved in consumer electronics. According to revenue and total market capitalization for IT companies worldwide, it is the biggest IT company in the USA.

What is the best tech company to work for? ›

The 12 Best Tech Companies to Work for in 2022 According to...
  • NVIDIA.
  • HubSpot.
  • Box.
  • Google.
  • Salesforce.
  • NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
  • Five9.
  • Twilio.
7 Oct 2022

Which is the famous IT company in USA? ›

MICROSOFT CORPORATION

Microsoft is providing Cloud Computing Technologies Solutions as well. Bill Gates is founder of Microsoft. Microsoft has Market Value of 2.358 Trillion USD company as on Jan-07-2022. Headquarters is in USA.

Which tech brand is best? ›

The World's Tech Giants, Ranked by Brand Value
RankCompanyBrand Value (2020)
#1Apple$352 billion
#2Microsoft$327 billion
#3Google$324 billion
#4Tencent$151 billion
6 more rows
4 Aug 2020

What is FAANG called now? ›

FAANG refers to Meta (formerly Facebook), Apple, Amazon, Netflix, and Alphabet (Google). However, due to the recent company rebranding from Facebook and Microsoft becoming the world's most valuable publicly traded company, Cramer has recently suggested changing the term FAANG to MAMAA.

Who are the big 4 tech giants? ›

Apple, Amazon, Facebook and Alphabet's Google – collectively known as the 'Big Four' tech companies in the West – are increasingly under regulatory scrutiny over the way they run their businesses and whether they are simply too dominant in their respective markets.

What's the new FAANG? ›

FAANG companies: MATANA is the new FAANG as per analysts.

Where are most tech companies located? ›

Top 25 Tech Hubs
  1. Austin, Texas. Austin, Texas nabbed the No.
  2. Dallas, Texas. Dallas, Texas boasts a population of 1.3 million, making it the third-largest city in Texas. ...
  3. Raleigh, North Carolina. ...
  4. San Jose, California. ...
  5. Charlotte, North Carolina. ...
  6. Seattle, Washington. ...
  7. San Francisco, California. ...
  8. Atlanta, Georgia. ...

Why are high-tech industries located in Silicon Valley? ›

It is easy to build infrastructure facilitating similar businesses. Silicon Valley is a destination on its own. Starting a tech business in such an ambiance with an established business infrastructure, talented resource pool, and a flourishing marketplace provides a clear head start compared to other locations.

Where is silicon industry Located? ›

The global semiconductor industry is dominated by companies from the United States, Taiwan, South Korea, Japan and the Netherlands.

Where are Silicon Valley companies located? ›

Silicon Valley spans the southern portion of the San Francisco Bay Area in Northern California, stretching roughly from the city of Belmont to San Jose. Some of the region's most prominent cities include Palo Alto, Redwood City, Mountain View and Fremont.

Which country is No 1 in tech? ›

Large country ranking
RankCountryInnovation inputs
1South Korea2.74
2Japan1.75
3USA1.59
4China1.76
16 more rows

Which is the IT hub of world? ›

New York. Over the last few years, the Big Apple has made significant technological strides. AI, big data analytics, cybersecurity, and education technology are the subsectors driving this. In total, New York has over 100 startup incubators and 9,000 startups.

Which city is known as Silicon Valley of world? ›

Silicon Valley, industrial region around the southern shores of San Francisco Bay, California, U.S., with its intellectual centre at Palo Alto, home of Stanford University.

Where is the biggest silicon mine? ›

Major countries in silicon production worldwide 2021

China is the world's largest silicon producer, with a production volume estimated at six million metric tons in 2021. The second largest producer of this metalloid in the world is Russia, which produced 580,000 metric tons in the same year.

Who is the number 1 semiconductor company? ›

Largest semiconductor companies by market cap
#NameC.
1TSMC 1TSM🇹🇼
2NVIDIA 2NVDA🇺🇸
3Samsung 3005930.KS🇰🇷 Korea
4ASML 4ASML🇳🇱
56 more rows

Where do most Silicon Valley workers live? ›

Consider cities like Palo Alto, Cupertino, Hayward, Fremont, Union City, and Los Gatos, where there is both a more reasonable rental rate and decent availability to those looking for housing. Many cities also offer access to BART, which may negate the need for a car commute.

What is famous in Silicon Valley? ›

The world's preeminent hub for technology, Silicon Valley is a byword for innovation. Today, it is home to the headquarters of many of the world's largest high-tech corporations, including more than thirty businesses in the Fortune 1000 as well as thousands of promising startups.

Which country will be the next Silicon Valley? ›

Steve Case, founder of AOL, predicts the dominance of tech companies on the coasts will give way to a flourishing of startups from smaller cities. To revist this article, visit My Profile, then View saved stories.

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