Flying into San Jose, you can see the future spread out below you – the offices of Google, Facebook, Apple and a thousand Silicon Valley startups that may ultimately make them obsolete. San Jose is nearly 250 years old, but this is not the place to enjoy historic architecture: most of the old neighbourhoods were bulldozed in the 1950s. Instead, visit the Tech Museum of Innovation for its cool exhibits about the world of IT and fun shop. Security at the Google campus – the Googleplex – tends to look the other way if you want to take photos in its outdoor sculpture garden, with its giant cartoon versions of Android figures.
The nightclub standard ‘Do You Know the Way to San Jose?’, first recorded in 1968, has been covered by dozens of artists in several languages.
Once you’ve had it with the online world, go downtown to visit the beautiful Cathedral Basilica of St Joseph, drive an hour to Big Basin to check out the giant redwood trees or walk through one of the area's many parks – there are 193 to choose from.