A city of growth and progress
San Jose is full of must-see attractions for all ages
San Jose is a tourist’s dream and has many features that set it apart from other large cities. Two types of attractions stand out in particular: the city’s museums, and its park and garden areas.
The Tech Museum of Innovation is a must-see for all visitors to San Jose. This fascinating establishment is a 132,000-square-foot facility that highlights science and technology in a fascinating and engaging manner.
“I have the best job in the building,” said Roqua Montez, senior manager of public relations. “Nearly every inch of the building is designed to engage visitors in science and technology and to stimulate our youth to become innovators of the future. More than 250 exhibits are housed here, so how can you pick just one! Whether it’s the Tech Virtual Test Zone, the world’s first virtual-world-to-real-world exhibit, or Green by Design, which explores how to incorporate innovative energy conservation into our everyday lives, there’s so much to do and see.”
The Tech Museum features an earthquake platform, which is a research tool used to compare the magnitude and motion of earthquakes, and an exhibit called Genetics: Technology with a Twist, which explores the latest developments in the field of genetics.
“My personal favourite feature of the museum is the 295-seat Hackworth IMAX Dome theatre, one of the top 10 attended in the United States,” said Montez. “The theatre houses a 9,000-square-foot perforated aluminum screen and a 12,000-watt, six-channel, all digital surround-sound system. The crystal clear images up to eight stories high and the unbeatable sound system treat wide-eyed visitors to the ultimate movie experience.”
The establishment of the museum has been fundamental as a source of information to its visitors.
“The museum has become a dynamic learning resource as well as the centre of entertainment and enlightened understanding about technology for children, young adults and families,” said Montez. “We’ve opened our doors to the community, ushering them in to experience and explore the latest technology that helped put Silicon Valley on the map. We offer free field trips to schools, free membership to teachers and every second Sunday of the month is free to visitors. It’s our way of staying true to our mission to break down the barriers between access and education. As we celebrate the 10th anniversary of the museum in its current location (201 South Market Street), we can be proud of our work to spotlight arts and culture and to serve as an educational resource for the community.”
For more information on the Tech Museum of Innovation, visit them online at: www.thetech.org.
Other museums of interest in the San Jose area include the San Jose Museum of Art, the San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles, and the Children’s Discovery Museum of San Jose to name a few.
Fabulous parks and gardens
One of the most fantastic garden attractions in the state of California is San Jose’s Guadalupe River Parks and Gardens (GRPG)?a three-mile-long paradise of trails and parks that is a wonder to behold. Within it there are several unique gardens, each with its own vibrant character.
“The Heritage Rose Garden is one of the most beautiful and popular attractions,” said Leslee Hamilton, executive director of the Friends of Guadalupe River Park and Gardens. “It’s the largest public garden in the U.S. dedicated to the preservation of old roses (over 3,000 varieties) and is maintained by volunteers, with support from the City of San Jose. The trail is another very popular element; a soon-to-be-paved extension carries joggers and cyclists another six miles from the park to Alviso, the southern tip of San Francisco Bay.”
There is also public art to be seen, a historic orchard, the Children’s Discovery Museum and other beautiful exhibits and centres. For those with an interest in sports, there are also tennis courts, softball fields and horseshoe courts. The entire facility is irrigated using only recycled water, which is of great significance given the state of the current environment.
There are several events of interest to look forward to at Guadalupe.
“Friends of GRPG’s Spring in Guadalupe Gardens is scheduled for April 25th,” said Hamilton. “The festival features plant sales, a compost giveaway, activities for children, alternative energy demonstrations, garden tours and, new this year, a family bike ride. The Heritage Rose Garden was recently announced as the first inductee into the Great Rosarians of the World’s Rose Garden Hall of Fame; an award ceremony will be held in the garden on May 18th. There are festivals nearly every weekend in Discovery Meadow, at the southern end of the park.”
For more information on Guadalupe River Parks and Gardens, visit them online at www.grpg.org.