Mountain View (California)

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Mountain View in California is located in the heart of the Silicon Valley. Mountain View is one of the major cities that make up Silicon Valley, and has many notable Silicon Valley companies either headquartered there or with a large presence, including Google, Symantec, Nokia and Microsoft.

Understand[edit]

Get in[edit]

By air[edit]

Mountain View is reachable from all three Bay Area airports:

  • San Francisco International Airport (IATA: SFO): The BART train has a stop directly at the airport, which you can ride to the Millbrae transit center. From Millbrae, leave BART and take Caltrain southbound service. If you are taking a taxi, note that San Francisco-based taxis may charge 150% of the normal fare when going more than 15 miles outside the city limit, and the fare is likely to be over $100.
  • San Jose (IATA: SJC): Take a free shuttle to Caltrain's Santa Clara station and then take the northbound train service. Also, you can take a free shuttle to the VTA Metro/Airport station and take the VTA light rail. Taxi fare is likely to be in the $35-45 range.
  • Oakland (IATA: OAK): Take a shuttle van service. This is the most distant of the three area airports. You can take BART from the new Oakland Airport BART extension, ride to Millbrae station, then connect at Millbrae to Caltrain southbound. Taxi fare from OAK is likely to be about $100.

By train[edit]

Caltrain service connects Mountain View to San Francisco and San Jose (and Gilroy). Almost all Caltrains stop at the downtown Mountain View stop on Castro St., including all local and limited-stop trains, and most Baby Bullet trains. All local trains and some limited-stop trains also service the San Antonio Caltrain station, near the border of Mountain View and Palo Alto.

To get to Amtrak trains from Mountain View, connect at the San Jose Diridon or Santa Clara stations via Caltrain.

There is also a VTA light rail service that connects downtown to several suburban locations in the south bay. VTA light rail can also be used to connect to the Amtrak Capitol Corridor train (to Sacramento) in Santa Clara.

Get around[edit]

For travel within Mountain View itself and the neighboring area, the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) operates bus and light rail service. The Caltrain, which runs all the way from San Francisco to Gilroy stops in Mountain View as well. Caltrain also provides relatively easy access to both San Francisco and San Jose Airport, via BART or bus connections.

Mountain View is good for cycling: many streets have bike lanes or are wide enough to comfortably support bike traffic. There are several Bay Area BikeShare stations located in Mountain View, as well as in a few neighboring cities.

The downtown area is walkable.

See[edit]

Google's headquarters
  •   Computer History Museum1401 N Shoreline Blvd (near Highway 101),  +1 650-810-1010. W-Su 10-5. World's largest and most complete computer history museum, documenting the area's primary industry. $15.
  •   Castro Street. Castro Street is a charming district full of ethnic diversity and interesting local businesses. Although there is a strong Asian presence among restaurants and shops, many different cultures are represented along these blocks. There is a weekly farmer's market and on certain Thursdays it is home to a great street fair with vendors and a classic car show. Also convenient access from public transportation by way of several trains and buses. If you live near this area or in most of Mountain View, Google provides free Wi-Fi internet all over (though it is spotty in many locations).
  •   Google Headquarters (Googleplex), 1600 Amphitheatre Pkwy. Drive around the large campus of buildings to see where all the geeks work. Make sure to take a picture in front of the huge Android statue at Building 44 (1635 Charleston Road). No public tours available.
  •   Shoreline Wildlife Refuge Area and Trail (In Shoreline Park at the end of Shoreline Boulevard),  +1 650 903-6392, e-mail: . Once the site for dumping trash, Mountain View closed this area as a dump and turned it into a park instead. Now it's a beautiful 700-acre park with a saltwater lake, golf course, rolling grassy hills, and bay trails.
  •   Hacker Dojo (hackerspace), 599 Fairchild Dr. Non-profit community center for geeks.

Do[edit]

  •   Shoreline Amphitheatre1 Amphitheatre Parkway (Off Shoreline Boulevard near Highway 101),  +1 650-967-3000. Outdoor concert venue with huge tent cover, location for many large Bay Area concerts as well as community events.
  •   Century Cinemas 161500 N. Shoreline Blvd +1 650-960-0970. Large movie theater with ample parking showing recent big movies.
  •   Shoreline Aquatic Center3160 N. Shoreline Blvd (in Shoreline Regional Park at the end of Shoreline Blvd),  +1 650-965-7474. Water sports center with boating, windsurfing, and other aquatic activities. Equipment rental available.
  •   Farmer's Market600 West Evelyn Ave (Caltrain Station). Every Sunday 9AM to 1PM. Farmers' market featuring fresh produce and prepared foods from farmers and small food producers in the local area. On '49ers game Sundays, the market is relocated to the corner of Bryant St. and California St. just a few blocks away.
  •   NASA Ames Research Center (Moffett Federal Airfield, off Highway 101),  +1 650 604-6497. Mon-Fri 8AM-4:30PM. Founded in 1939, Ames Research Center has evolved into one of the nation’s premier research labs. Ames provides the products, technologies and services that enable NASA missions and, in turn, expand human knowledge.

Buy[edit]

Mountain View is the home of many big box stores including REI, Best Buy, IKEA, and Costco near the Hwy 101 Rengstorff exit and Walmart, Target, Ross, Kohl's, and Safeway in the San Antonio shopping center.

Eat[edit]

This page uses the following price ranges for a typical meal for one, including soft drink:
Budget Under $10
Mid-range $10 - $20
Splurge Over $20

Castro Street is the main street in the downtown area with many restaurants and bars. East and South Asian food is available in abundance, but it is by no means the only choice. Watch the hours of operation; most restaurants in Mountain View are not open very late. There are some wonderful Mexican restaurants in the area serving Poblano style food.

Budget[edit]

  •   Gelato Classico241 Castro St. Italian ice cream. A local favorite, with long lines out the door during peak hours.
  •   The Posh Bagel444 Castro St. Bagels, sandwiches, crepes, and grilled panini.

Mid-range[edit]

  •   Amber2290 W. El Camino Real. Indian.
  •   Bangkok Spoon702 Villa St.
  •   Chef Liu236 Castro St. Excellent, inexpensive, Taiwanese Chinese food
  •   Fiesta del Mar1005 Shoreline Ave. Serves delicious sea food dishes as well as the famous and elusive Enjococado chicken.


  •   Fu Lam Mum153 Castro St. 11AM-2:30PM, 5PM-midnight every day. Dim sum is the staple of this restaurant, so come here hungry! Most dim sum plates cost between $3–5, and with the endless parade of food being served, you're guaranteed to walk away full. The shrimp and pea sprout dumplings come recommended.
  •   Hong Kong Bistro147 Castro St. Western-style food from Hong Kong, vestiges of a colonial era. One of the few restaurants in Mountain View open late; serving until midnight.
  •   Kirin Chinese Restaurant485 Castro St. 11AM-midnight every day. Look past the fish tank crawling with lobsters outside and look in for some cheap and tasty Chinese food. Parking is accessible and the service is quick.
  •   Krung Thai590 Showers Dr (San Antonio Shopping Center). Thai.
  •   La Fiesta240 Villa St (about a 10 minute walk east of Castro St., just past a bunch of car mechanic shops),  +1 650-968-1364. Mexican food
  •   Napoletana Pizzeria1910 W. El Camino Real (in a shopping area on El Camino Real),  +1 650 969-4884. Only certified authentic Italian pizza in the South Bay. An experience. Moderate.
  •   New Mongolian BBQ304 Castro St. Relatively inexpensive all-you-can-eat Mongolian BBQ (fill a bowl with ingredients and sauce, and it will be cooked for you)
  •   Shezan216 Castro St. The location formerly occupied by Sue's Kitchen (and Godavari, in another incarnation) now holds a Pakistani restaurant with superb food full of subtle flavors.
  •   Shiva's800 California St. Shiva's has been reviewed as one of the top north Indian restaurants in the Bay area. Lunch buffet is a popular choice. Good for group dining.
  •   St. Stephens Green223 Castro St. Stiff drinks, good pub food and plenty of standing space available, St Stephens Green is perfect for happy hour drinks or just a casual meet up with friends. Although an Irish pub, it seems that hip hop is the vibe of choice here.
  •   Taquería Los Charros854 West Dana St. Mexican food. Excellent tacos, and many other choices. Very inexpensive for the Castro St. area.
  •   Vaso Azzurro108 Castro St. Italian food, served in a restaurant with substantially-Italian-speaking staff
  •   Vive Sol2020 W. El Camino Real +1 650-938-2020. Specializes in cuisine from the Pueblo region of Mexico. An outdoor seating area makes this a great place to go on a warm summer evening.

Splurge[edit]

  •   Cascal400 Castro St. Excellent Latin American Tapas, particularly good for sharing food in groups.
  •   Scratch401 Castro St +1 650-237-3131. Updated American comfort food. It has a great bar with unusual, craft selections of American distilled spirits. Also, good soups, salads, and appetizers. Main courses are inconsistent but many are quite good.

Drink[edit]

Sleep[edit]

Go next[edit]

Routes through Mountain View
San FranciscoPalo Alto  N US 101.svg S  SunnyvaleSan Jose
END  N California 85.svg S  SunnyvaleSan Jose


This city travel guide to Mountain View is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page
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