Located in Santa Clara County and named for its beautiful views, Mountain View borders the San Francisco Bay in the north and Los Altos. The pedestrian-friendly downtown is packed with things to see and do, including the Computer History Museum, the Shoreline Amphitheatre, the Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts, and the Mountain View Farmers Market. Many of the world’s largest technology companies are headquartered in Mountain View, including Google, Intuit, Symantec, and Mozilla Foundation.
1.Stevens Creek Trail
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Stevens Creek Trail is a multi-use trail that runs along the creek corridor of Stevens Creek beginning in Shoreline Park and ending at the corner of Heatherstone Way and Dale Avenue. The scenic trail winds its way through natural riparian habitats and tidal marshlands and across Stevens Creek, which is home to a host of native California wildlife, including raccoons, possums, and several species of birds. The trail is popular with locals for walking and jogging, cycling and scootering, roller and inline skating, dog walking, and bird-watching. Stevens Creek also offers a variety of educational opportunities, ranging from guided tours, creek clean-up days and vegetation planting for school groups.
2.Computer History Museum
© Computer History Museum
The Computer History Museum is dedicated to collecting, presenting and preserving the artifacts and stories of the information age, and delving into the computer revolution and the impact it has had on society as a whole. Established in Mountain View in 1996, the Computer History Museum is renowned for housing the largest and most significant collection of computing artifacts in the world, including the an Apple I, a Cray-1 supercomputer, the famous 1969 Neiman Marcus Kitchen Computer, and a section of Google's racks of custom-designed web servers. The museum also features a 25,000-square-foot exhibit which covers the history of computing in 20 galleries, from the abacus to the Internet, as well as several additional displays, and a collection of source code of valuable software.
1401 N Shoreline Blvd, Mountain View, CA 94043, Phone: 650-810-1010
3.Mountain View Farmers Market
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The Mountain View Farmers Market is an award-winning farmers’ market that has been providing the community with fresh fruit and vegetables and handcrafted products, arts and crafts for the past 22 years. The Farmers’ Market is held every Sunday at the Caltrain Station throughout the year and features over 80 farmers and food purveyors that sell a variety of fresh organic produce, freshly baked treats and goods, honey, and fresh flowers. There is free parking for visitors to the market along Hope Street and two parking garages with secure parking on Bryant Street and W Evelyn Avenue.
600 W Evelyn Ave, Mountain View, CA 94041, Phone: 800-806-3276
4.Google Android Lawn Statues
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The Google Android Lawn Statues are a series of large foam statues that are located near Google’s headquarters – the Googleplex at 1981 Landings Drive in Mountain View. Made by a company named Themendous, the figures are named after versions of Google's Android mobile operating system, like a cupcake, a donut, a gingerbread man, an ice cream sandwich and a piece of honeycomb. Just before a new version of Android is released, Google unveils a new lawn statue representing that version's codename. Situated on the grass lawn in front of Building 44, where the Android development team works, statues the Android Cupcake, which represents Android version 1.5, the Android Éclair, which represents Android version 2.0, 2.1, the Android Gingerbread, which represents Android version 2.3, and the Android Jelly Bean, which represents the latest Android version 4.1,4.2.
Front Lawn of Building 44, 1625 Charleston Road, Mountain View, CA 94043
5.Shoreline Lake Boathouse
© Shoreline Lake
The Shoreline-Lake Boathouse is a scenic spot for biking, hiking, jogging, strolling, bird-watching, and other recreational activities. The Shoreline-Lake Boathouse is situated within the beautiful Shoreline Regional Park, which was established in 1983 by the City of Mountain View and features the human-made 50-acre saltwater Shoreline Lake. The lake is only 25 feet deep at its deepest point with warm waters and offers a variety of recreational activities, including sailing, swimming, fishing, and other watersports such as paddle-boarding, kayaking, and canoeing. Silicon Valley’s leading concert venue, the Shoreline Amphitheatre is set on the shores of the lake and offers a range of entertainment throughout the year.
3160 N Shoreline Blvd, Mountain View, CA 94043, Phone: 650-965-7474
© Shoreline Amphitheatre
The Shoreline Amphitheatre is an outdoor amphitheater set on the shores of the Shoreline-Lake that offers a range of entertainment throughout the year. Designed and built in the mid-1980s as part of the Shoreline Park project., the venue has a capacity of 22,500, with a large grass lawn that can seat up to 16,000 people, and 6,500 reserved seats and has hosted many famous bands and singers, including Julio Iglesias, Steve Winwood, and the Bee Gees. The amphitheater has also played host to many music festivals, including Download Festival, Country Throwdown Tour, Lollapalooza, Harmony By the Bay Festival, BeachFest, I Love This City Festival, and more.
1 Amphitheatre Pkwy, Mountain View, CA 94043
7.Moffett Field Historical Society Museum
© Moffett Field Historical Society Museum
The Moffett Field Historical Society Museum is dedicated to preserving the heritage and telling the story of the Moffett Field, one of Northern California’s most significant historic sites. The Moffett Field has a significant history that includes major contributions to the advancement of science and technology and the national security of the country, playing a vital role in the world’s most significant eras, including the Macon era, the Army era, the WWII era, and the Post War era. Today, the Moffett Field is the core focus of the Moffett Field Historical Society Museum, which features a variety of exhibits that document the history of aviation and aircraft. The museum is also home to a gift shop that sells aviation-related gifts and souvenir and offers docent-led tours around the facility.
500 Severyns Ave, Mountain View, CA 94043, Phone: 650-964-4024
8.NASA Ames Visitor Center
© NASA Ames Visitor Center
The NASA Ames Visitor Center forms part of the NASA's Ames Research Center, which is a key facility for many of NASA’s missions and projects. The Ames’ Visitor Center highlights the projects at the Research Center and the work NASA is doing with a variety of fascinating exhibits, such as ‘Science on a Sphere’, which takes a new look at the planets in the Universe with a large, spherical projection system; ‘REAL Moon Rock’ which displays a real lunar sample retrieved by the crew of Apollo 15 from the Moon’s Hadley-Apennine region. Other features of the museum include a high-resolution Immersive Theater with a 14-foot tall and 36-foot wide screen which presents high-definition videos of Mars missions, and simulated flights through the Milky Way Galaxy and beyond.
NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, CA 94035, Phone: 650-604-6497
9.TheatreWorks Silicon Valley
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TheatreWorks is a professional theater company that produces and presents a year-round season of eight productions ranging from comedies and musicals to dramas and more. Founded in 1970 and based in Menlo Park, the theater employs 300 artists annually and is the third largest repertory theater in the San Francisco Bay Area. Productions are presented at the Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts and in the Lucie Stern Theatre complex in Palo Alto and host the annual TheatreWorks’ New Works Festival every summer, which draws people from around the country.
500 Castro St, Mountain View, CA 94041, Phone: 650-463-1960
10.The Rengstorff House
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The Rengstorff House is the oldest home in Mountain View one of the finest examples of Victorian Italianate architecture in the area. Built in 1897 by prominent local businessman, Henry Rengstorff, who operated a ferry between San Francisco and Mountain View, the house was fully restored to its former glory in 1991 and boasts several significant architectural elements such as a hip roof and a central gable crowned by a widow's walk, an elegant front portico, and symmetrical room layouts. Interiors are decorated with classic period décor, and outdoor brick patios are surrounded by pristinely manicured lawns and flowering plants. The Rengstorff House is open for public tours three days a week and admission is free, although donations are welcomed.
3070 N Shoreline Blvd, Mountain View, CA 94043
11.Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts
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The Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts is a community center that hosts a variety of art, dance, musical and theatrical performances throughout the year. Located in the vibrant heart of downtown Mountain View, the Mountain View Center was established to enrich audiences through an interaction with the arts and is home to more than 50 performing arts organizations, including TheatreWorks and the Peninsula Youth Theatre. The center boasts three stages and state-of-the-art technologies to ensure top-class performance, which ranges from plays and performances, classical ballet or contemporary dance, music, and dance from around the world, and choral or instrumental music concerts. The center also hosts other events such as travel films, lectures and talks, and family events.
500 Castro St, Mountain View, CA 94041, Phone: 650-903-6000
Cascal is a lively, colorful restaurant that specializes in Pan-Latin and Latin American cuisine. The vibrant eatery brings Old World and New World together where the savory flavors of Spain blend seamlessly with the exotic culture of Latin America, resulting in a variety of epicurean and musical delights to create an unforgettable dining experience. The menu features a wide selection of tapas and sharing plates that feature fresh seafood, chicken and meats, as well as entrées like ceviche, paella, and house specialties. The cuisine is paired with a list of handcrafted cocktails, imported spirits, craft beers, and casual wines, and can be enjoyed indoors or alfresco-style on the charming outdoor patio. Cascal is open for lunch and dinner, seven days a week.
400 Castro St, Mountain View, CA 94041, Phone: 650-940-9500
© Xanh Restaurant
Xanh Restaurant is a high-end Vietnamese restaurant designed to cater for discerning and sophisticated guests that boast a stylish dining room, bar, and lounge, and serves a menu of traditional Vietnamese fare in a refined and elegant environment. The separate bar and lounge offer a stunning spot for pre-dinner cocktails or post-dinner drinks and serves a full menu of food, as well as an extensive list of libations from signature cocktails, craft beers, and globally-inspired wines. Xanh Restaurant offers both indoor and outdoor dining options with a lovely patio available for alfresco dining in the summer, and there are several private dining rooms for special celebrations and functions. Xanh Restaurant is open for lunch and dinner during the week, and dinner only on weekends.
110 Castro St, Mountain View, CA 94041, Phone: 650-964-1888
© Oren's Hummus
Oren’s Hummus is a mini-chain of restaurants that are renowned and loved for their creamy variations of Israeli-style hummus. Founded by tech entrepreneur Oren Dobronsky in 2001, the unique dining concept serves an Israeli and Middle Eastern-inspired menu which features traditional dishes such as hummus bowls topped with a range of toppings like eggplant, cauliflower, and braised lamb, grilled skewers of meat, and pita sandwiches filled with falafel, chicken schnitzel, ground beef kebab. Other delights on the menu include a hearty Israeli breakfast with two eggs any style, Israeli salad, goat cheese, and roasted peppers. Oren’s Hummus is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, seven days a week.
126 Castro St, Mountain View, CA 94041, Phone: 650-938-6736
© Doppio Zero
Doppio Zero is a modern Italian eatery on Castro Street that specializes in serving authentic Southern Italian cuisine in a comfortable, friendly space. Inspired by the mouthwatering cuisine from Southern Italy, Doppio Zero serves a variety of dishes based on traditional Campania recipes and using only the freshest locally sourced ingredients. The menu boasts favorites such as hand-tossed, wood-fired pizzas with a selection of toppings, handmade pasta, and sauces, fresh seafood straight from the Mediterranean Sea, delicious entrées of prime meat cuts, chicken, and fresh fish and of course, decadent desserts. Doppio Zero is open for lunch and dinner, seven days a week.
160 Castro St, Mountain View, CA 94041, Phone: 650-938-4147
15 Best Things to Do in Mountain View, California
- Stevens Creek Trail, Photo: Courtesy of Sergii Mostovyi - Fotolia.com
- Computer History Museum, Photo: Computer History Museum
- Mountain View Farmers Market, Photo: Courtesy of markobe - Fotolia.com
- Google Android Lawn Statues, Photo: Courtesy of Mauro Rodrigues - Fotolia.com
- Shoreline Lake Boathouse, Photo: Shoreline Lake
- Shoreline Amphitheatre, Photo: Shoreline Amphitheatre
- Moffett Field Historical Society Museum, Photo: Moffett Field Historical Society Museum
- NASA Ames Visitor Center, Photo: NASA Ames Visitor Center
- TheatreWorks Silicon Valley, Photo: Courtesy of narongchaihlaw - Fotolia.com
- The Rengstorff House, Photo: Courtesy of Harris Shiffman - Fotolia.com
- Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts, Photo: Courtesy of cdrw1973 - Fotolia.com
- Cascal, Photo: Cascal
- Xanh Restaurant, Photo: Xanh Restaurant
- Oren's Hummus, Photo: Oren's Hummus
- Doppio Zero, Photo: Doppio Zero
- Cover Photo: Courtesy of Lynn Yeh - Fotolia.com