Welcome to San Mateo
Picture an urban locale with a welcoming community and a diverse, relaxed vibe
Easygoing and friendly is a popular way to describe San Mateo, and for good reason. Its natural beauty, attractive homes, and wide, engaging streets make it one of the most diverse and welcoming cities in the Silicon Valley area. The namesake of San Mateo County, this city is nestled equidistant from many major metropolises — but residents don’t need to travel all that often, thanks to the wealth of opportunity right here at home. What once began as an escape for wealthy Bay Area elites in the 1800s has transformed into a laid-back, casual city full of great food, fun, and recreation.
Today, the city’s architecture offers many options. Locals can choose to live in condominiums, apartments, or single-family homes. There are even a plethora of architects in the area, making building from the ground up or renovating well within the realm of possibility. The city’s easygoing nature makes it easy to envision a dream life within its borders. Green space and parks abound, not to mention beaches, eateries, shopping, and more. Sun-seekers, tech-lovers, and everyone in between can build a dream life in San Mateo.
Things to Love
- Easygoing, gentle energy throughout the city
- Healthy living, lots of outdoor recreation available
- Tons of wonderful restaurants, eateries, and shops
- Beautiful beach and lagoon access
- Conveniently situated between San Jose and San Francisco
- Home to Hillsdale Shopping Center
Enveloped by a charming, carefree atmosphere, San Mateo knows how to have a good time. Foodies will love the wealth of restaurants up and down the city, while practically all the more than 100,000 residents love taking advantage of the great outdoors on the weekends. With commutes barely 30 minutes to either San Jose or San Francisco, the opportunities for industry or fun are endless, whether you’re an artist, tech genius, or simply exploring. Even more impressive is the fact that San Mateo is a minor powerhouse in its own right, complete with a charmingly delightful downtown full of recreation. Spending a weekend hiking the bay trail before catching dinner at an unhurried, gentle eatery is a top-tier way to enjoy your free time.
Dining, Entertainment, & Shopping
There’s more than enough locally to keep people of all ages occupied here in San Mateo. Restaurants of every flavor and a shopping mall are just the tip of the iceberg.
A classy, stylish night awaits at Pausa Bar & Cookery
, where wood-fired pizzas, Italian must-haves, and more are served with refreshing, inventive cocktails. For American cuisine inspired by German beer gardens, look no further than Wursthall
, which is far from the worst San Mateo has to offer. Quite the opposite, this local favorite is bursting with flavor on the table and in the tanker, as it boasts house-made sausages and cold pints of your favorite beverage.
Enjoy an industrial vibe with your beer at Fieldworks Brewing Company
. With seasonal beers, fan favorites, and a wide array of pub food, there’s always something new to try here. For something any time of day, stop by Backhaus
. Full of delicious pastries and naturally-leavened artisan bread, this is a must-see for anyone who just can’t kick carbs for good.
Things to Do
Recreation is practically San Mateo’s middle name. With a population that values the outdoors, healthy living, and having a good time, it’s no wonder there’s so much to do here.
In San Mateo, you don’t have to wait for warm weather to enjoy a farmers market—here, it’s held all year round (not to mention the weather is always warm). For organic produce, a selection of artisanal goods, and even flowers, honey, and gourmet options, stop by the College of San Mateo Farmers' Market
. For the kids and animal lovers in your life, plan a day trip to CuriOdyssey at Coyote Point
, a combination science center, zoo, and ecological masterpiece. Events, exhibits, animals, and more are constantly updating, making this destination an ever-changing extravaganza of fun and educational experience.
While there are too many great outdoor opportunities to list here, San Mateo’s very own Central Park
is a top-tier place to go for anyone. Exercise classes, Japanese gardens, fields, and natural panoramic views all make this outdoorsy locale a dream come true. If you prefer the air-controlled indoors, Hillsdale Mall
is perfect for dining, shopping, walking, and more, thanks to its dozens of shops and restaurants.