Looking to do some shopping in San Jose or Silicon Valley? Shopping is practically a sport in some of The Valley's most affluent communities, but luckily there are places to fit whatever your budget.
Here are some of the best places to shop in Silicon Valley.
Shopping Malls (Indoor)
To shop major national chain stores, check out these shopping malls: Westfield Valley Fair Mall, Westfield Oakridge Mall, Eastridge Center & Westgate Mall (all in San Jose); Vallco Shopping Mall (Cupertino); The Great Mall (Milpitas); Hillsdale Shopping Center (San Mateo)
Shopping Malls (Outdoor)
For more upscale shopping options in a pedestrian-friendly outdoor shopping center, check out Santana Row (San Jose) and the Stanford Shopping Mall (Palo Alto). The Pruneridge Shopping Center (Campbell) and Town and Country Shopping Center (Palo Alto) are other great places for a mix of boutique and chain stores.
The Gilroy Premium Outlet mall has the biggest selection of outlet stores in the region. The Great Mall, in Milpitas, has a mix of new and outlet stores. Popular outlet stores include the Saks OFF 5th, Last Call Nieman Marcus, Banana Republic/Gap/Old Navy Factory stores, and others.
Big Box and Discount Stores
These national big box and discount stores have several locations across Silicon Valley: Target, Walmart, Costco, Cost Plus World Market, Marshalls, TJ Maxx/Homegoods, Ross, Big Lots, etc. For electronics, look to Best Buy or Fry's.
Downtown Shopping Districts
The walkable downtown business districts of Willow Glen (San Jose), Los Gatos, Los Altos, Campbell, Palo Alto, Menlo Park, and Burlingame have some of the biggest downtown shopping districts in Silicon Valley.
Look to these neighborhoods for a mix of unique local boutiques and popular chain stores.
Clusters of ethnic stores and businesses can be found in these diverse neighborhoods: Mexican (all around Silicon Valley but a big cluster at the intersection of Story and King Roads in San Jose); Vietnamese stores (All over San Jose, but a big cluster around San Jose's "Little Saigon" neighborhood on Tully Road); Indian stores in Milpitas and Sunnyvale; Korean stores in Santa Clara; and Chinese stores in Milpitas and Cupertino.
The weekly San Jose Flea Market (Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday) and the Capitol Flea Market (Thursday - Sunday) both sell a mix of old and new (mostly cheap imports from Asia) at discount prices. The monthly De Anza College Flea Market (First Saturday of every month) is where you should go to look for antiques and more unique second-hand items. For the complete list of Silicon Valley flea markets, check out this post.
Several antique stores are clustered on San Carlos Street in the Burbank neighborhood in San Jose and in the Niles neighborhood in Fremont. The De Anza Flea market (listed above) has a fair number of antique vendors.
Thrift Stores/Secondhand Stores
The second-hand store chain, Savers, has some of the biggest and best thrift stores in Silicon Valley. Nationwide nonprofits Goodwill and the Salvation Army also have lots of stores around Silicon Valley. Crossroads sells a carefully curated mix of new and still in fashion second-hand clothing their hip customers.
The Dollar Tree and 99 Cents Only have several stores around the region. The popular Japanese discount store, Daiso, has several stores in Silicon Valley that sells cheap and quirky Asian imports for a fixed price of either $1.50 or $3.
The major grocery store chains in Silicon Valley are Safeway, Lucky, Save Mart, Lunardis, Zanotto's, FoodMaxx, Grocery Outlet, Sprouts, Trader Joes, and Whole Foods. Many Target and Walmart stores have grocery stores, as do all Costco stores.
For ethnic foods, Mi Pueblo (Latin American), Chavez (Latin American), 99 Ranch Market (Asian), Lion Supermarket (Asian), Mitsuwa (Japanese), and Nijiya (Japanese) have multiple locations in Silicon Valley. Smaller Indian, Vietnamese, Korean, Filipino, Ethiopian, and Middle Eastern grocery stores are all over the region (see the ethnic shopping section above to see which neighborhoods these stores are clustered in).
For the freshest produce, check out this list of all the farmer's markets in San Jose and Silicon Valley