Regions covered – San Jose, Gilroy, Santa Cruz, Monterey
San Jose & Gilroy Regions
7) Winchester Mystery House
When the creator of Winchester Rifles had an unexpected death, his widow Sarah Winchester was asked by a spiritual medium to build a giant mansion as a place for the Winchester Rifles’ victims to rest.
This giant Scooby-Doo mansion has been the inspiration for the film Winchester starring Helen Mirren, has been on an episode of MythBusters and was the inspiration for Sam and Dean Winchester in Supernatural TV series.
Location: 525 S Winchester Blvd, San Jose
6) San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles
This place features different weaving and printing techniques from different cultures across all the continents with large-sized viewing samples on the wall.
Location: 520 S 1st St, San Jose
5) Wings of History Aircraft Museum
This museum south of Gilroy and by San Martin Airport contains different hangars, each displaying various historic airplanes going all the way back to wright brothers.
Location: 12777 Murphy Ave, San Martin
Santa Cruz & Monterey Regions
4) The Mystery Spot
This is a shack up in the woods near Santa Cruz which is …. tilted. And the trees around it are also tilted at an angle. This quirk is played up to advertise the place as a gravity-sinkhole. Great place for kids to roam around a severely inclining house. And if you are not buying into the gravity-defying explanation, nevertheless it’s a quiet romantic place in the woods with a beautiful redwood cover.
Location: 465 Mystery Spot Rd, Santa Cruz
3) Santa Cruz Surfing Museum
A tiny museum commemorating the history of surfing at the Mark Abbott Memorial lighthouse. The spot has a great scenic view of the ocean too.
Location: 701 W Cliff Dr, Santa Cruz
2) Jameson Motorcycle Museum
Right on downtown Monterey, this museum contains a lot of vintage motorbikes and scooters, with their history.
Location: 305 Forest Ave, Pacific Grove
1) Monterey Bay Aquarium
One of the best aquariums in the area, this place is a must-visit.
The first biggest attraction here is the several story-high kelp-forest. Make sure you time it when the forest is “fed”. A man in a diving suit goes down and feeds every variety of fish including sharks.
The second aspect of this place are the surreal and dreamy jellyfish. An entire section is devoted to dozens of types of illuminated jellyfish swirling all over the walls creating an otherworldly atmosphere.
The last part of this experience are penguins. They have cute little penguins which can be seen up close.
Location: 886 Cannery Row, Monterey