This amusement park in Santa Clara features thrilling rides including Delirium (a spinning pendulum), Drop Tower Scream Zone (where you free fall 22-storeys), Invertigo (North America’s first inverted face-to-face roller coaster) and Flight Deck (Northern California’s longest inverted roller coaster). There is also an Australian-themed water park called Boomerang Bay that features the Great Barrier Reef wave pool, and Didgeridoo Falls, Ripsnort Ridge, Tasmanian Typhoon and the Screaming Wombat waterslides, plus a Peanuts-themed children’s area called Planet Snoopy.
4701 Great America Parkway, Santa Clara
Light Rail Great America Bus 55, 57, 59, 60, 121, 140, 321, 330 (stop: Great America) Train Great America (ACE/Amtrak)
Tel (408) 988 1776
This museum inside Intel's Santa Clara headquarters has displays about the history of Intel, how semiconductors are made and how they work.
Robert Noyce Building, 2200 Mission College Boulevard, Santa Clara
Bus 60, 140, 321, 330, 827 (stop: Mission College & Burton)
Tel (408) 765 0503
Open Mon-Fri 9am-6pm, Sat 10am-5pm
Considered the birthplace of Silicon Valley, this garage workshop near Stanford University is where Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard set up Hewlett-Packard. The garage is listed as a historic landmark, but it is not open to the public.
367 Addison Avenue, Palo Alto
Bus 35 (stop: Waverly & Homer) Train Palo Alto (Caltrain)
The Rosicrucian Museum is home to the largest collection of Egyptian artefacts in the western USA. The museum's exhibits feature a a full scale replica of a noble's tomb plus an impressive collection of artefacts including several mummies.
1342 Naglee Avenue, San Jose
Bus 61, 62 (stop: Naglee & Park)
Admission $9 ($7 students)
Open Mon-Fri 10am-5pm, Sat-Sun 11am-6pm
The San Jose Museum of Art has a permanent collection of 1,400 works of contemporary art and also hosts a programme of temporary exhibits.
110 South Market Street, San Jose
Bus 55, 63, 64, 65, 72, 73, 79, 81, 201 (stop: San Fernando/First Street) light rail Paseo de San Antonio
Tel (408) 271 6840
Admission $8 ($5 students)
Open Tue-Sun 11am-5pm
This excellent museum features over 240 hands-on exhibits about technology and also includes an IMAX theatre.
201 South Market Street, San Jose
Bus 23, 168, 201 (stop: San Carlos & Market) Light Rail Convention Center
Tel (408) 294 8324
Admission 9am-9pm daily
Open $10 (includes 1 IMAX film); Star Trek exhibition $25 ($22 students)
This rambling mansion was once the home of Sarah Winchester, the widow of gun baron William Wirt Winchester. The house is supposed to be haunted by the ghosts of people who had been killed by Winchester rifles and Sarah was told my a medium that continuous construction would appease the ghosts. This belief led to the house being continually extended without any master plan for 38 years until her death. At one point the house was seven storeys tall, but after damage caused by the 1906 earthquake it is only four storeys tall today. The house has 160 rooms, 47 fireplaces, 10,000 windows and needs 76,000 litres to repaint.
525 South Winchester Boulevard, San Jose
Bus 60 (stop: Winchester & Olsen)
Tel (408) 247 2101
Mansion tour $28, Behind-the-Scenes tour $25, Grand Estate tour $33