15 Best Things to Do with Kids in Santa Clara, CA
As a city, Santa Clara in Santa Clara County has a lot to offer.
From museums to amusement parks, you’ll never be bored once you step into the city boundaries.
There are countless things to see and fall in love with.
Go shopping, watch a concert, and explore their natural area.
Interested to know more about this place?
Here are the 15 best things to do with kids in Santa Clara, California:
Watch a Game at Levi’s Stadium
Football is one of the most iconic American sports, and there’s no better place to see it than at Levi’s Stadium.
Built in 2012, it’s been the host of countless games and will undoubtedly serve as the playing ground for many more.
Take your entire family to the game and share your love and passion for football with your kids—everyone’s sure to love it!
Whether you’re there for a Superbowl match or a college playoff, you will undoubtedly have an amazing experience in this stadium.
And if you’re not into football, don’t worry since Levi’s Stadium has also served as the stage for many concert and artistic performances.
See Vintage Firefighting Memorabilia at the Santa Clara Fire Museum
Located in 1900 Walsh Avenue, the Santa Clara Fire Museum is the perfect destination for kids dreaming of becoming heroic firefighters.
There, you’ll find memorabilia in the Fire Department since it was founded in the mid-19th Century.
They even have a restored Model T Ford Truck initially purchased by the city in 1920 and displayed right at the center of their museum!
You and your kids are sure to learn a lot by visiting the place and just seeing the local history and the many ways fire safety has evolved in Santa Clara over the years.
But that’s not all you’ll find if you end up there.
You can also view old photographs of the local firefighting teams over the years.
That, more than anything, really gives the place a sense of weight and history—almost like you’re stepping into the shoes and experiences of those firefighters from the years long passed.
Admission is free, so you and your family should have no trouble getting in and seeing all the exhibits.
There’s certainly a lot to learn at the Santa Clara Fire Museum, so make sure it’s at the top of your to-do list when planning your trip.
Catch a Fun Event at the Santa Clara Convention Center
The Santa Clara Convention is owned by the city and has served as the stage for countless events and performances throughout the years.
With its high-tech features, any event you attend will surely be a sight for sore eyes.
And the events they host there are varied and guaranteed to be fun.
There have been dance performances, designs, and gymnastic competitions.
If there’s a specific event you’re looking to see at the Santa Clara Convention Center, be sure you plan your trip accordingly.
Learn More About Football at the 49ers Museum
What kid doesn’t love football and what better place can you and your child learn about football history than at the 49ers Museum?
The place has nearly 50 galleries and exhibit spaces, all dedicated to documenting, preserving, and presenting the past, present, and future of the 49ers.
There’s even an area that has augmented reality where visitors can see everything they want to know about the team’s recent successes.
Aside from that, you can also find the Morabito Theater—there, you can watch the signature film of the 49ers.
Football is a truly American passion, and there’s no better place to cultivate that love than at the 49ers museum.
Explore Santa Clara’s Central Park
Just like New York City, Santa Clara’s Central Park has expansive green spaces and a picturesque view, making it one of the most beautiful places in the city.
There are so many things and sights to do there that you and your family wouldn’t even know where to start.
Just east of Saratoga creek, for example, you can find the world-famous George F. Haines International Swim Center.
On the other hand, if you head west of the creek, you’ll find yourself standing in the picnic area.
There, you can settle down with your family and share a lovely afternoon meal with them.
As for the little kids, there’s a nearby play area they can run around in while the adults have a nice, relaxing chat.
The park also has basketball courts, tennis courts, softball fields, and lawn bowling areas for families looking to play sports and a few games while there.
Central Park truly has it all; you and your family will savor every moment you spend there.
Watch a Performance by the Santa Clara Players
The Santa Clara Players are a non-profit community theater group dedicated to advancing and presenting the dramatic arts in their local community.
They stage several shows throughout the year, and seeing just one of their performances is a treat that will entertain the entire family for the whole night.
Some of their past shows include original productions by homegrown playwrights, meaning you and your family will surely get a unique theater experience that you’re not going to get anywhere else.
And their shows are a magical experience—overflowing with all the charm and idiosyncrasies of small community theaters.
The Santa Clara Players are full of talented individuals, and seeing one of their productions is an experience you won’t forget anytime soon.
Learn More About Trains at the South Bay Historical Railroad Society
Trains are one of those things that kids fixate on a lot, and if your child is currently fascinated by locomotives, they’re definitely going to appreciate a trip to the South Bay Historical Railroad Society.
Their main hub is the Santa Clara Railroad Depot and the Edward Peterman Museum of Railroad History.
There, you and your kids can find all kinds of train memorabilia as well as restored train cars.
They’re a fascinating sight and will really give your child an insight into what these trains looked like in their glory days.
For the South Bay Historical Railroad Society, preserving their local train history is of utmost importance, and there’s no better way to help them do that than by sharing this love of trains with your child.
Go Shopping at Rivermark Village
If you want the ultimate shopping experience with your kid, Rivermark Village is the place to go.
The place offers a unique blend of specialty retailers and restaurants that’ll ensure you find something new, unique, and interesting everywhere you turn.
The place is right off the Montague Expressway, with easy access to public transportation, so you and your family should have no trouble getting there.
And once you find it, it’s shopping heaven filled with shops that are sure to interest everyone in the family.
Shopping and finding the best things to buy is a key part of any vacation, and Rivermark Village should definitely be at the top of your list to do just that.
Experience the Rides of California’s Great America
As one of the premier amusement parks in California, California’s Great America has a lot of hype to live up to.
And rises to the challenge admirably.
Whether your family wants rollercoasters or water rides, the place has it all!
There are even seasonal events to keep things interesting whenever you visit.
If there’s one place in Santa Clara you definitely have to visit while you’re there, California’s Great America is it.
Play Your Favorite Videogame With the Family at the Cyber Racoon PC Cafe
For the technologically inclined families out there, an afternoon spent at the Cyber Racoon PC Cafe may just be the perfect place to play all your favorite games while on vacation.
And, if you’re up for it, you can even book a play party for you and the kids.
They have packages that include a party table, a Playstation or Xbox, and a VR Game.
Sit back and compete against your kids—whether, for a shooter or an MMO, this place has the facilities you’ll need.
But PC rentals aren’t the only thing that makes this place special.
They also host events throughout the year to engage the gaming community and give gamers an opportunity to hang out, get to know each other and have fun with like-minded people.
If you’re lucky, you may even catch tournaments with world-class gamers or gaming tokens and promos that’ll let you play for hours at a discount!
People usually associate vacations with sightseeing and exploring, but that’s just not everyone’s cup of tea.
If you and your family are more interested in connecting with other gamers, you won’t regret heading to the Cyber Racoon PC Cafe.
See the Local Artworks at the Triton Museum of Art
The Triton Museum of Art is one of the most beloved destinations of the local community.
For years, it’s provided a venue where local artists can display their works for all the world to see alongside other regional and national artists.
And even now, it’s still one of the best places to visit in the city if you want to see contemporary works from creators in the Greater Bay Area.
Tens of thousands of people attend the Triton Museum of Art everywhere to view the gorgeous pieces of art there.
Don’t let your family miss out, and make sure to head over there at the first opportunity.
Unwind at Montague Park
Montague Park sits on 5.5 acres of land, and it’s a fantastic place for families to head to if they’re looking for a quick break from all the sightseeing and traveling.
There’s a nice play area where your kids can play around and a picnic-barbecue area for the adults.
When you’re there, take advantage of the warm afternoon sun to let go of all your worries and the things that stress you out.
Take a quick breath and savor the easygoing atmosphere all around you.
You may not have much to do in Montague Park, but sometimes that’s precisely what you need to unwind from a long day of playing tourist.
Visit the De Saisset Museum
Sitting right at the heart of Santa Clara University, De Saisset Museum is one of the few South Bay Museums to hold accreditation from the American Alliance of Museums.
Their art collection contains various works, including paintings, sculptures, photographs, and more.
As for their history collection, you can find several pieces that tell the story of California History.
There’s a lot to see at the de Saisset Museum, and it’s the kind of place that you have to see with your own two eyes to truly appreciate.
Enjoy the Magic of Reading at the Santa Clara City Library
Every child can find value in a visit to the Santa Clara City Library.
They can reread their favorite stories or discover a love for storytelling.
As a parent, it also allows you to share with them the stories that mattered the most to you as a child.
And, of course, like most libraries, reading isn’t the only thing you can do there.
The library staff also hosts various events throughout the year to engage the community and get people interested in their various programs.
So, if you ever find yourself in the area, pay the Santa Clara City Library a visit and marvel at the magic of storytelling with your children.
See the Beautiful Land of the Ulistac Natural Area
The Ulistac Natural Area is an ecological gem of Santa Clara, filled with gorgeous sights and breathtaking views.
The place itself contains 40 acres of land along the Guadalupe River.
It also serves as a major migratory flyway for various species of birds.
It’s one of the only dedicated natural spaces in the city, and visiting it will feel like a literal breath of fresh air.
So do stop by with your family if you can—the Ulistic Natural Area is a magical place and one of the city's last holdovers of the natural world that’ll give you a glimpse of the beauty and graceful elegance of the area years and years ago.
Other Things to Do Nearby
Play Minigolf at Golfland USA
Playing mini-golf at Golfland USA, located less than 10 minutes away in Sunnyvale, is a fun and unique activity that the entire family is bound to enjoy.
With their expansive mini-golf course, everyone is guaranteed to experience a whole new level of enjoyment and entertainment.
Whether you’re a veteran player or a newbie at minigolf, their lush and vibrant courses will be an experience you won’t forget anytime soon.
But golf isn’t the only thing this place has to offer.
There’s also an arcade where you can find some of the newest and most exciting games in the Bay Area.
Whether you want to race a high-speed car all over the world, shoot evil aliens, or just show off your skills in front of your entire family, this place has you covered.
And once you’re done with that, don’t forget to head to the snack bar and catch a quick bite to replenish your energy for the rest of the trip.
Maybe you can even go for another round at the golf course or play another set of games at the arcade.
Golfland USA has a lot going for it, and once you’ve started playing there with your family, you won’t ever want to leave.
Aside from the prominent places, the city has a lot of hidden corners you can also explore with the family.
So take this list of things to do in Santa Clara, California, with kids as a guide.
And see for yourself what other amazing sights you’ll see once you get to know the place better.