The first thing you’ll notice on any Silicon Valley tour is that you can drive pretty much anywhere in the area without too much confusion. While it’s easy to get around without a car due to the high numbers of Uber and Lyft drivers in the area – both companies are headquartered just across the bay in San Francisco – it’s still a lot cheaper to drive yourself. Driving also allows you to take advantage of self-guided driving tours so you can learn as you tour the area. Silicon Valley is one of the wealthiest areas in the world, so plenty of money has been poured into public infrastructures like roads and parking spaces.
Despite the popularity of the term, “Silicon Valley” isn’t actually an official name for any place in California. What we call Silicon Valley is actually three different counties put together: San Mateo County, Santa Clara County, and Alameda County. Though it’s a little nebulous, the traditional borders of Silicon Valley hold about 1800 square miles and 3 million people inside, making driving a necessity if you want to see the full area. Just make sure you watch out for California’s notoriously bad drivers as you make your way through the valley! Californians tend to be rated among the worst drivers in the country on most polls, and they certainly deserve their reputation. A little defensive driving is absolutely recommended as you tour Silicon Valley.
If you’d like to learn more about the history of Silicon Valley while you dodge its terrible drivers, Action Tour Guide offers a Silicon Valley Self-Guided Driving Tour through our app on iOS and Android devices. The tour will take you to the campuses where both of those phones are designed, as well as other historical sites like the Stanford Research Park and the famous HP garage.