The original Silicon Valley, which is a nickname given to the Bay Area of San Francisco has become a name associated with a number of tech hubs across the world. All of these cities and zones house international IT companies, biotech enterprises, R&D centers and businesses. These tech hubs have changed the demographics of those cities and immigration from around the world have made these cities more cosmopolitan and international.
If you run a tech business, you probably will have to visit any of these cities frequently or you probably already live there. Silicon valleys of the world not only house important tech companies, but they have a charm of their own, far removed from the Internet and silicon chips. Most people, who visit these cities, tend to overlook the local significance and touristic charm as they believe that these cities are mostly important because of the tech companies.
Nothing could be more wrong than this assumption. Each of the silicon valleys listed below are amazing tourist destinations, which a discerning CEO or head of the company can discover in the lap of luxury. Thanks to new money generated from tech companies, most of these cities are known for their boutique hotels, spas and places where you can relax. Apart from that, we shall discuss the unique charm of each of these cities.
The original Silicon Valley, San Francisco, needs no introduction. It is the second largest city in California and is known for its mild climate, fog and the all-too-famous bridge. The city has always been a vibrant metropolis where the bohemian thrived. Writers, film makers, artists and intellectuals have made San Francisco their home for times immemorial. During the gay liberation, San Francisco became the centre for all activism and protests. The thriving Castro district is a great way to relive those days, some of which are filled with pain as well, because of the AIDS disaster of the 1980s. Nevertheless, San Francisco is still the most progressive and liberal cities in the U.S. With an amazing selection of bars, nightclubs, restaurants and museums, there is never a dull moment when you are in this city. Just make sure that you do not arrive here in the middle of winter as San Francisco tends to be colder than you would expect a Californian city to be.
This Brazilian city is hardly known outside tech circles and even among IT professionals. Hence, Campinas will need a quick introduction. The irony is, Campinas is very similar to San Francisco in a number of ways. It is located next to a metropolitan city just like San Francisco is. Sao Paulo is just a few hours away from Campinas and that metropolitan region is the commercial nerve of Brazil. Campinas is home to UNICAMP, one of the most prestigious universities in not only Brazil but all of South America. With its mild climate, museums and a vibrant bar and nightlife scene, Campinas is one of the most exciting Brazilian cities. You could choose to discover the little known Brazilian cuisine and attend a Bossa Nova concert in one of the bars. You could also take a moment to admire all the beautiful colonial Portuguese buildings that were built hundreds of years ago. Campinas will surely delight anyone who loves culture and history.
Cape Town and Stellenbosch
Stellenbosch is near Cape Town and is considered to be the silicon valley of not just South Africa but all of Africa. However, when you are in Stellenbosch or nearby Cape Town, you need to remember that you are in one of the most beautiful cities in the world. The natural beauty that surrounds Cape Town is truly out of this world and is not something that you would get to see anywhere. The cliffs, the mountains and the blue seas might remind you of Rio de Janeiro but Cape Town is a completely different ball game. When you are in Cape Town, make sure that you also taste all the exotic wines and discover colonial buildings which are perfectly maintained. Cape Town has had a difficult history like the rest of South Africa but it is one of the most vibrant cities in the world today; and above all, it has the best climate that you could ever imagine. It is mild, windy and cool.
Bengaluru does not need a lot of introduction as a silicon valley either. It was Bengaluru that put India on the map of Informational Technology. Ever since the 90s, Bengaluru has grown to be a chaotic urban sprawl denuded of trees and green patches. It is no longer the pensioners’ paradise it once used to be and it is also no longer the garden city as it was once described. Urban development and unsustainable growth are some of the darker sides to IT industry and that can be witnessed in Bengaluru. In spite of its problems, Bengaluru still has a live bar scene and has many old pubs to visit. Take time to visit the nearby national park and grab a drink at one of the pubs. There is also a lively underground music scene, which is, usually, not found in other cities of India. Nearby places like Ooty, Coorg and Goa provide escapes from the chaos that Bengaluru is today.
The megapolis, which continues to remain autonomous within the larger Chinese territory, is one of the best kept secrets of the world. Hong Kong might be a modern sea of skyscrapers. However, it also has much to offer to people who would like to discover Chinese architecture, ancient temples and a vibrant bar scene. Hong Kong is known for its glitzy clubs and malls, which are often some of the best in the world. Being a tourist destination itself, Hong Kong offers visitors all kinds of entertainment. Whether you want to shop, dance, drink or eat, you will be able to do everything in Hong Kong. Moreover, it is a world class city, right up there along with Tokyo, Paris, London and New York. If you are into IT and are looking for a good trip, agree to travel to Hong Kong and you will not be disappointed; make sure that you discover and explore the older parts of the town as well, as they are the best kept secrets of Hong Kong.
The largest city of Israel, Tel Aviv, is home to several companies from around the world. It is easily the silicon valley of the Middle East and Mediterranean. The city is known for its beautiful beaches, amazing weather, historic architecture and a great nightlife. It is also one of the few places in the world where you can learn about Jewish history and culture in detail. The museums and cultural centers that Tel Aviv offers are truly mind-blowing. Tel Aviv is also close to Jerusalem and is just a short ride away. Though there is a lot of fear about security issues because of militancy, Israeli authorities have ensured that everything is safe. In fact, Tel Aviv and other Israeli cities are safer than most British and American cities. The cuisine of Israel can be experienced right from glitzy restaurants to small kiosks. Baroque and Art Deco architecture can be seen all over Tel Aviv & is a great way to discover the culture of Israel. The climate is always pleasant, making Tel Aviv is the ultimate travel destination in all of Asia, Middle East and Mediterranean.
The silicon valleys of the world are hotbeds of technological activity. These are the cities where you will have to travel sometime in your life. When you do, it is always a good idea to discover the city and nearby regions so that you understand other aspects of silicon valleys of the world. No silicon valley in this world is only about IT and technology. Every small and large city has something to offer for the discerning travelers. It is always a good idea to pick up a guide book and begin to explore the city, instead of remaining in the hotel room waiting for the next conference. Of course, you might be on a business visit, but that does not mean you need not explore the cities that you visit. Such experiences enrich you and help you to grow as an international technology expert.