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Things To Do In San Jose With Kids

Things To Do With Kids In San Jose California

The Best Things to do With Kids in San Jose, California

16 Ways Kids Can Give Back without Leaving the House

Bay Area families know theres a lot more to San Jose than meets the eye: between the sprawling Childrens Discovery Museum to the Tech Museum, this Silicon Valley city has been pumping out diversity, culture and innovation long before you could say start up. Weve gathered up all the fun things for kids to do from museums to parks to an amusement park just for them in this list below. Dont forget to swing by our San Jose events calendar to see what events are happening during your San Jose visit.

Childrens Discovery MuseumSince opening in 1990, Childrens Discovery Museum of San Jose has become one of largest and most respected museums of its kind in the nation. Geared towards kids 10 and under, the CDM offers hands-on discovery from everyones favorite bubble room to a fire truck you can climb on. Dont miss their new outdoor space, Bills Backyard, for down-in-the-dirt action.

180 Woz WayOnline:

Municipal Rose Garden Rolling green lawns and colorful showy blooms highlight the San José Municipal Rose Garden. In fact, hardly a day passes when some species is not in full bloom, with more than 3,500 plantings and 189 varieties featured.

Naglee Avenue & Dana Ave.Online:

Los Gatos Creek TrailThe Los Gatos Creek Trail system extends from downtown San José to the hills above Los Gatos Creek. On-street travel along bike lanes on Willow Street is required to travel between downtown and west San José.

Things To Do In San Jose California

The best things to do in San Jose, California one of the most overlooked cities in the Bay Area.

Often neglected in favor of San Francisco and other Bay Area cities like Oakland or Napa, you may be surprised to know that San Jose actually has a larger population than any other city in Northern California.

In fact, its Californias 3rd largest city after Los Angeles and San Diego.

San Jose may not have the underground art culture or the trendiness assigned to other spots around the Bay, but there are plenty of interesting and fun things to do in the city if you know where to look.

After living in the Bay Area for the last few years and making more than a dozen trips down to San Jose in that time, these are my recommendations for the top things to do in San Jose, California to really explore what this South Bay city has to offer.

Note: this post contains affiliate links, which help run this site at no extra cost to you so I can keep providing free travel advice and tips.

Get your FREE California Travel Planner including printable checklists and my favorite two-week itinerary for the state.

Go For A Hike At Almaden Quicksilver County Park

San Jose has several county parks that are perfect for hiking and other outdoor activities. At Almaden Quicksilver County Park, once the worlds second largest mercury mine, you can hike among the tunnels and tracks left behind by the massive mining operation. Alum Rock Park, one of the states oldest municipal parks, was once known as a health spa thanks to 27 natural mineral springs that are still around today. At Joseph D. Grant County Park, Santa Clara Countys largest, 51 miles of trails wind their way through the foothills of the Diablo Range.

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Where To Stay In Limn Province

If Tortuguero National Park is your main draw to Costa Rica, youll want to stay nearby. Located along the Caribbean coast, the Tortuga Lodge & Gardensprovides stunning views of the Tortuguero River and luxury amenities. Eco-conscious families will also love its rustic lodge feel, which was built with the immediate tropical environment in mind. Tortuga Lodge & Gardens also features its own private nature reserve, ideal for daily nature walks .

Contact Information All Travelers

45 things to do in san jose with kids

All air passengers to the United States will also be required to provide contact information to airlines before boarding flights to the United States. This strengthens a travel process already in place to rapidly identify and contact people in the U.S. who may have been exposed to a communicable disease, such as COVID-19. Access to travelers contact information will allow U.S. federal, state, and local health departments, and agencies to share appropriate health and public health information necessary to help keep the public safe.

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Family Attractions In San Jose

Some of the most unforgettable experiences in San Jose are best shared with family. Get outdoors and explore Happy Hollow Park and Zoo, stay indoors for stargazing at Lick Observatory or cheer on the San Jose Sharks at the SAP Center. Looking for a bigger adventure? Plan a day trip trekking through the majestic redwoods by foot or steam train and explore the beautiful scenery around San Jose.

Get Spooked At The Winchester Mystery House

If youre looking for unusual things to do in San Jose, the Winchester Mystery Houseis an odd mansion that exists right next to Santana Row.

The house was built by Sarah Winchester, the spouse of William Winchester, from the family that created the popular Winchester Rifle Company.

After Sarah lost both her child and her husband, she was convinced that the spirits of all the people killed by Winchester rifles were coming back to haunt and punish her.

She started building the Winchester House to confuse the spirits and continuously built and remodeled the house until her death.

She kept carpenters on a rotating shift so there was always work being done on the house at any given time while she was living in it.

Its an eccentric and interesting stop in San Jose and worth visiting at least once if youre in the areaas long as youre not easily spooked.

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New Almaden Quicksilver Mining Museum

Santa Clara County Parks

The Almaden Quicksilver Mine is the oldest and most productive mercury mine in history.

The mining operations of 135 years are chronicled at this museum.

While the mine itself is closed down, there are many historical structures left at the site.

Dont miss this opportunity to learn about the rich history of mercury mining.

Address: 21350 Almaden Rd, San Jose, CA 95120, USA

Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk

Fun things to do in San Jose, ca

Located about 40 minutes from San Jose, the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk has an endless summer vibe all year around. Old-fashioned amusement park rides, cotton candy, fried treats, arcade games, and the beach are the order of the day at the Boardwalk.

Its also home to the Giant Dipper, the fifth oldest roller coaster in the United States. A wooden thrill ride, the Giant Dipper has appeared in movies and commercials.

A little more than a half hour south of San Jose, Gilroy is the Garlic Capital of the World. In fact, it celebrates this crop annually with their Garlic Festival where people line up to sample unusual fare like garlic ice cream

. It is also home to Gilroy Gardens, a horticultural-themed amusement park for the under 10 set with incredible circus trees bent into fantastical shapes.

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Get Your Sugar Fix At Psycho Donuts

Although not as good as Bobs Donuts in San Francisco, Psycho Donutsis a fun and tasty donut shop in San Jose, if only for their originality.

They specialize in wacky and over-the-top unique donut flavors. When I was there last I tried their donut with peanut butter drizzle and cereal bits on top.

They also have flavors such as the Canadian Morning Squeal with maple icing and bacon bits, and the Dead Elvis with bananas, bacon, peanut butter, jelly, and a cream filling.

Their donuts are really rich, so you probably only need one or you might want to share depending on what you order.

Update: Psycho Donuts used to be located in downtown San Jose but theyve since moved to Campbell and the Westfield Valleyfair Mall.

Awesome Things To Do In San Jose Costa Rica With Kids


Many travelers heading to Costa Rica with kids land at the airport in San Jose, get in their rented car or in a tour bus and promptly leave the city. Costa Rica is an amazingly diverse country and more often than not, people visiting are excited to see the rainforest or travel to the many volcanos Costa Rica is home to. I get it. I have to admit it, I almost overlooked San Jose entirely too. Truthfully, I feel that San Jose is a great place to visit and has a lot to offer especially when bringing kids Costa Rica. For this reason, Ive compiled a list of things to do in San Jose Costa Rica with kids.

Truthfully, I feel that San Jose is a great place to visit and has a lot to offer especially when bringing kids Costa Rica. For this reason, Ive compiled a list of things to do in San Jose Costa Rica with kids.

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Best Places To Stay With Kids

We all know that most kids only care about the pool when it comes to staying in a hotel. I simply need sheets that dont scream for blacklight. And maybe a mini-fridge. With those disposable glasses filled with wine. But I digress. There are plenty of family friendly hotels in San Jose. Collapse with exhaustion in these reliable, four-star hotels: The Hilton San Jose and The Marriot San Jose both offer packages and weekend family rates.

Best Things To Do With Kids In San Jose California

top 10 fun things to do in san jose with kids trekaroo

I recently took a trip to San Jose, California and discovered that it was a hidden family-friendly destination. Ill cover everything from family-friendly hotels in San Jose, what to see in San Jose with kids with tips on downtown San Jose things to do, my favorite kid-friendly activities in San Jose, and places to visit near San Jose. Read the post to find out the best things to do with kids in San Jose, California.

As a mom worldschooling her two kids, my days are most often spent at home, making sure my kids are studying, getting on skype with tutors for their e-lessons, doing homework, taking them to their extracurricular activities, planning our next family worldschooling adventure, writing blogsthe list goes on and on and on. Its very easy for me to get bogged down with our daily activities as a family that I forget to take time for myself.

And, its not just me that suffers from the lack of me-time as a mom. My girlfriends are victim to it, too. Which is why a couple of years ago we decided to start planning an annual all-girls trip to take the time to relaxfor ourselves, and for our families, too.

A post shared by Wendy Awai-Dakroub on Mar 17, 2018 at 2:28pm PDT

Our trip started off with a couple of days in San Jose before heading to the coast where we spent the rest of the trip glamping in nature. Did you know that San Jose was originally home to one of Californias oldest civilian settlements, founded in 1777?

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Enjoy The Scenery At Mistico Hanging Bridges Park

An amazing adventure awaits your family at Mistico Hanging Bridges Park!Located between a lowland, a forest, and a highland, this La Fortuna park combines several different ecosystems to create beautiful biodiversity. Be sure to snap a photo of the signature hanging bridge overlooking a scenic lake, providing visitors with spectacular views of the surrounding area! Aside from the famous hanging bridge, the park also boasts some of the best things to do in Costa Rica with kids. Take kids on a bird-watching tour or a hike through the forest with a knowledgeable wildlife specialist. Daredevil children may even enjoy a guided hike toward the Arenal Volcano, one of the most famous landmarks in the country. Though a guide is recommended, its also doable to try it self-guided, if youre looking to save some money. Just remember to enjoy the area with your family!

Explore Manuel Antonio National Park

Manuel Antonio National Parkis a stunning showcase of Costa Ricas natural beauty. Located in Quepos along the countrys Pacific shore, this expanse encompasses rugged rainforest, white-sand beaches, and colorful coral reefs. Here, families can explore with the help of a guideor with a self-guided map, depending on preference. If you want to learn more about the parks wildlife, we recommend a guided tour. Guides will have a better idea of how to spot the animals and flora, so if kids are interested in seeing monkeys, lizards, snakes, or sloths roaming free, this is probably the best option. If you want to explore at your own pace and possibly relax seaside, theres a place for that too. Manuel Antonio National Park contains three beaches where you can spend the afternoon sunbathing with snacks. Purchase refreshments from the on-site cafe, since the park doesnt allow outside food!

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Spend The Day Golfing

One of the benefits of having such a spread out area and so much space is that there are a number of quality golf courses in San Jose.

If youre looking for a day out on the green, Id recommend checking out Cinnabar Hills Golf Club, Los Lagos Golf Course, Rancho Del Pueblo Golf Course, San Jose Municipal Golf Course, or Santa Teresa Golf Club.

Sa Casa Del Cacao Chocolate Factory

SAN JOSE COSTA RICA VLOG | City Trip & Children’s Museum

Chocolate was once prized as much as gold in Costa Rica and it was once the top export of the country. In Costa Ricas history, chocolate was used in indigenous ceremonies and was so important it was used as currency. Chocolate production is making a comeback in Costa Rica, and the Casa del Cacao is a good place to experience some of that chocolate culture. It offers chocolate workshops and is a great place to pick up some genuine Costa Rican chocolate. Located in downtown San Jose you can sample two of Costa Ricas prize exports, chocolate and coffee.

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Act Like A Kid At The Childrens Discovery Museum

San Joses family friendly credentials boast two crowning jewels: the Childrens Discovery Museum and Happy Hollow Park and Zoo. Happy Hollow, located within the larger Kelley Park, introduces kids to a small but interesting collection of animals from around the world including meerkats, capybara, a giant anteater and their newest addition, a male jaguar named Kianto. At the Childrens Discovery Museum, kids play their way through smartly designed exhibits like mammoth discovery and an outdoor learning environment called Bills Backyard.

Learn About The California Missions At Mission Santa Clara

California has a total of 21 Spanish missions that were built by the Franciscan Order in the late 1700s and early 1800s when the Spanish took over what is now present-day California.

Mission Santa Clara was built in 1777 and was the eighth mission built in the string of 21 missions.

Located on Santa Clara Universitys campus, Mission Santa Clara was also the first Mission to honor a female saint Saint Claire of Assisi.

Although the original mission burned down, the current mission is a replica of the original one and is still a good place to learn about Spanish history in California.

Mission Santa Clara is an operating church of the university, but visitors are welcome to visit the historical mission and spend time in the rose garden next door.

If you have time after touring the mission, spend an hour exploring Santa Clara University, which was founded in 1851 and is the oldest university in California.

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Climb Up Observation Tower At The Arenal Observatorylodge & Spa

Families visiting the Arenal Volcano will love the Arenal Observatory Lodge and Spa. As the only hotel within Arenal Volcano Park, you cant beat the amazing views here. The area is a natural wonderland surrounded by creeks, rivers, and waterfalls. For the best overlook, be sure to climb up the hotels 92-foot-tall observation tower in the middle of the rainforest. With 360-degree panoramas of Lake Arenal, Cerro Chato, and the Arenal Volcano, itll definitely be the highlight of your visit! Families staying at the hotel can also get a free guided tour of the property, including information about its beautiful flora and fauna. Kids can even watch hummingbirds flock to the bird feeder stationed outside the hotels restaurant! Theyll also love spotting unique wildlife such as toucans, wild turkeys, red-eyed tree frogs, and spider monkeys. Plus, theres a museum on-site detailing the history of the Arenal Volcano.

Costa Rican National Theater

top 10 fun things to do in san jose with kids trekaroo

The National Theater in San Jose was completed in 1897 and is still an important landmark in town. They offer tours of the theater and its amazing architecture as well as regular shows. The National Symphonic Orchestra regularly has performances and live productions are constantly being put on at the theater. Many of the productions are kid friendly.

Visiting this theater is like stepping back in time 100 years and is a truly amazing experience.

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The New Owner of and Former Owner of Meet Costa, the adventurous spirit behind and the former proprietor of With a profound passion for exploration and a love for sharing travel experiences, Costa's journey from motorcycle enthusiast to travel blogger has been nothing short of extraordinary. Costa's fascination with travel began with his motorcycle adventures, documented on his beloved Through exhilarating rides across picturesque landscapes and encounters with diverse cultures, Costa cultivated a deep appreciation for the transformative power of travel. Now, as the proud owner of, Costa brings his wealth of experience and boundless enthusiasm to the world of travel blogging. With a commitment to providing valuable insights, practical tips, and inspiring narratives, Costa invites readers to embark on unforgettable journeys of their own. From hidden gems to iconic landmarks, Costa's storytelling paints vivid pictures of the places he's visited and the people he's met along the way. With, Costa continues his mission to ignite wanderlust and foster a global community of passionate travelers. Join Costa on a virtual voyage through captivating destinations, immersive cultural experiences, and endless possibilities for adventure. As the steward of, Costa looks forward to guiding readers on transformative travel experiences that enrich the mind, body, and soul.

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