Top 13 Things To Do In Redwood City (CA)

Written by Jan Meeuwesen
Updated on
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Redwood City can be found on the San Francisco peninsula in the Bay Area of Northern California and, although not one of California’s most frequented tourist destinations, the city does have a number of worthwhile attractions that are worth a visit. The city is forward thinking and has number of modern attractions to complement the historic landmarks of the city. Located around 27 miles south of San Francisco, Redwood City is an option for a day trip from the Golden Gate City. If you do choose to visit Redwood City, here are some things you should get up to:

1. San Mateo County History Museum

San Mateo County History MuseumSource: jejim / shutterstock
San Mateo County History Museum

The San Mateo museum is a must visit for any trip to Redwood City and arguably the cities top attraction. The museum features a number of exhibits demonstrating and exploring how life used to be throughout past decades in San Mateo County. Exhibits include a general store from the 1880s and a house showing what life was like in California when it was part of Mexico. The San Mateo County History Museum also houses a huge collection of books and other archived materials where further research can be undertaken into the history of San Mateo State. The building itself is a historic courthouse and is equally stunning both inside and out.

2. Redwood Morton Community Park

SkateboardingSource: Parilov / shutterstock

If you want to do as the locals do whilst in Redwood City, this community park is a great place to start. Residents of the nearby neighborhoods use this park regularly for activities such as tennis, BBQs, ball games, baseball, skateboarding and working out. The Redwood Morton Community Park is also used for events throughout the year including tea parties and art displays. The park is the largest in the Redwood City and provides a great place to be active or relax depending on how you feel.

3. Pulgas Water Temple

Pulgas Water TempleSource: Sundry Photography / shutterstock
Pulgas Water Temple

The impressive stone structure Pulgas Water Temple was designed in 1934 and was built to celebrate the incredible feat of bringing water 160 miles from California to the Bay Area through the Sierra Nevada. The project to bring water to the area cost a whopping $102 million dollars and took 24 years through the Great Depression. The stone columns of the temple pay homage to the Romans and Greeks whose techniques were used in the movement of the water. The site is now open to visitors during weekdays and offers a great photo opportunity. The landmark is occasionally used as a wedding venue.

4. Fox Theatre

Redwood City Fox TheatreSource: jejim / shutterstock
Redwood City Fox Theatre

The Fox Theatre, located at 2215 Broadway downtown Redwood City, is a historic theater and is registered on the National List of Historic Places. The theater shows a wide range of performances including live music, comedy and musicals. The theater opened way back in 1929 and in its glory days, stars such as BB King and Vanessa Williams performed at the Fox. The theater was forced to close in 2009 when it ran into financial trouble but it is back open now and is well worth a visit even if the performing arts are not one of your passions.

5. Century 20 Cinema

Century 20 CinemaSource: jejim / shutterstock
Century 20 Cinema

Located on Sierra Boulevard, this high tech cinema complex features a huge arcade, multiple screens and self service ticket machines. The cinema features all the latest blockbusters as well as live sporting events and music concerts.

6. Gourmet Haus Staudt

BeerSource: katjen / shutterstock

This rustic beer garden and shop offers a taste of Germany in the United States. The shop has all the ingredients needed to make tradition German cuisine as well as spices and a huge choice of German beers. If looking around the shop leaves you feeling thirsty and in need of a sit down, then the adjoining beer garden is perfect. The beer garden has ten quality German beers as well as authentic snacks and German dishes on offer for peckish customers. The atmosphere in the garden is a perfect mix of relaxed and welcoming making it a perfect place to hangout in downtown Redwood City.

7. The Record Man

VinylSource: Delpixel / shutterstock

This place is any vinyl collector’s dream come true. The Record Man on El Camino Real has over one million vinyl records. All genres are covered with records ranging from classical to blues and hip hop to country. Even for travelers not into record collecting, The Record Man is impressive due to the sheer size of the collection. For those who are keen vinyl hunters, The Record Man claims that, “if it can’t be found at The Record Man, then it probably doesn’t exist”

8. The Foundry

VolleyballSource: zieusin / shutterstock

If you are visiting Redwood City and are a keen fitness fanatic then a visit to The Foundry is a must. This state of the art sport complex world class facilities for basketball and volleyball along with an uber modern gym. The gym alone is what will attract most travelers and it is a gym that will chance the way you perceive gyms with its modern, state of the art machinery including Vertafex jump machines and Naah shooting machines.

9. Edgewood Park

Edgewood ParkSource: Ingus Kruklitis / shutterstock
Edgewood Park

Edgewood Park is a great place to hike whilst admiring the beauty of the grasslands and wildflowers that cover the area. The park is situated just off of Interstate 280 making it easily reachable but the park has a wild feeling nonetheless. The wooded areas and grasslands here provide the perfect habitat for wildlife including deer, snakes and jackrabbits.

10. Bair Island

Bair IslandSource: Kit Leong / shutterstock
Bair Island

Bair Island is a 3,000 acre area of marsh land in Redwood City. The area is made up of inner, outer and middle islands and is part of the San Francisco Bay Wildlife Refuge. As well as providing unique and beautiful natural scenery, the islands are also home to the luxury Villas apartments which feature stylish Italian architecture and are one of the most stylish places to stay in Redwood City.

11. Phleger Estate

Phleger EstateSource: bsterling / Flickr | CC BY-SA
Phleger Estate

The Phleger Estate is named after Mary Elena Phleger who wanted to keep her family estate intact and, as such, petitioned and fund raised in order to transform the private property into a park that could be enjoyed by all. The old redwoods that once stood tall in the park were mostly destroyed by logging but the park has young trees in growth and offers a tranquil place to be, at the southernmost point of the Golden Gate National Parks.

Top 13 Things To Do In Redwood City (CA):

  • San Mateo County History Museum
  • Redwood Morton Community Park
  • Pulgas Water Temple
  • Fox Theatre
  • Century 20 Cinema
  • Gourmet Haus Staudt
  • The Record Man
  • The Foundry
  • Edgewood Park
  • Bair Island
  • Phleger Estate