The Bay Area is a diverse and unique area brimming with parks, shopping centers and cultural areas. For Palo Alto teens without cars or drivers licenses, exploring these sights can be a difficult task. Thanks to Caltrain, however, teens can easily navigate the Peninsula and explore dozens of local sights. Read on to see clickPA’s list of the top five destinations one can visit on Caltrain.
- San Francisco
There’s really no question that San Francisco is the most interesting city on the Bay. The Caltrain Station is located adjacent to AT&T Park and within a walking distance of popular sights such as Chinatown and South Beach. On bike, one can leisurely travel along a flat bayside road past Pier 39, Ghirardelli Square and the Exploratorium. San Francisco’s bus system also takes passengers from the train station all over the city. The city’s beauty, culture and accessibility make it a popular destination for local teens and a Bay Area gem.
- Castro Street, Mountain View
For teens looking for ethnic shops and shady streets, Castro Street is the ultimate location. Only a few minutes from Palo Alto by train, this area features Mediterranean, Japanese, Italian and Mexican food–And that’s only scratching the surface. Its PMT shops also draw local residents. If you’re not hungry, browse the selections at Books Inc or attend a show at the Performing Arts Center. Teens can also study up at the Mountain View Public Library or just hang out in Pioneer Memorial Park.
- Downtown San Jose
San Jose isn’t usually the place that comes to mind when one thinks of interesting cities, but Downtown San Jose is full of fascinating sights and delicious restaurants. The Cathedral Basilica of St. Joseph, a five minute bike ride from the station, features a gorgeous interior decorated with stained glass windows, impressive paintings and a massive dome ceiling. Museums, such as the San Jose Museum of Art and the Children’s Discovery Museum, dot the area, while two theaters and a Performing Arts Center offer additional entertainment. On hot days, teens and children alike splash in the fountains in Plaza de Cesar Chavez Park and the downtown hosts dozens of ethnic restaurants.
- Downtown Redwood City
Most notable for its popular movie theater, Redwood City is quickly becoming a new hangout spot for teens. In one square block there are two movie theaters (one historic), dozens of delicious restaurants and the San Mateo County Historical Museum. Weekends often feature local concerts, fun runs and other events.
- Downtown San Mateo
I know what you’re thinking: “What’s in San Mateo?” The city is a restaurant paradise, featuring Japanese, Indian food, coffee shops and more. Quaint architecture and street art also makes this locale a unique destination. The San Mateo Buddhist Temple, a local theater and Japanese Tea Garden are additional sights.
Photos: mountainview.net, Everywhere Once, redwoodcity.org & Wikipedia