Stanford

50 things to do in Stanford

This place is frugal paradise. World class museums, the largest Rodin collection in America, gardens and architecture to explore. Overall a most beautiful campus, all this with little or no entrance fees.

Tour dates and times can change, please always check the websites for more information. This is a working university, please be considerate of the students while on campus.

As always these items are in no particular order. Please use the comment section below or contact me for your feedback.

 

  1. Parking can be tricky. So the first tip is: Take the free shuttle, the Marguerite, from the Palo Alto Caltrain station (https://transportation.stanford.edu/marguerite)
    Sign to free Stanford shuttle
  2. Get to the visitor center and pick up a map for a self guided walking tour (295 Galvez St) or take a free 1 hour student led walking tour, everyday 11:30 am and 3:30 pm  (http://visit.stanford.edu/tours/index.html, 295 Galvez St)
    Stanford Visitor Center sign
  3. Bike the campus, alumni can borrow bikes at the Alumni Center (https://alumni.stanford.edu/get/page/resources/alumnicenter?saoPath=/abouta/alumni_center/home.html, on the corner of Campus and Galvez) or you can rent a bike at the Campus Bike Shop (https://campusbikeshop.com/articles/rent-a-bike-pg88.htm, Tresidder Union, 459 Lagunita Dr #12)
    Bikers at Stanford
  4. Get an aerial overview from the Hoover Tower, $4 adults, $3 senior and children under 12, students and up to five guests are free (http://visit.stanford.edu/plan/guides/hoover.html, 550 Serra Mall) and make sure you spend some time to see the Herbert Hoover and Lou Henry Hoover exhibits in the lobby of the tower houses. Next to the tower is the Herbert Hoover Memorial Exhibit Pavilion. Tuesday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., free of charge (http://www.hoover.org/library-archives/visit/explore, 434 Galvez Mall) [Also see: Presidential digs]
    Hoover Tower, Stanford
  5. Chill out at the Windhover, usually only accessible with a student ID, there is a public tour Saturdays at 11 am (https://windhover.stanford.edu/visit, 370 Santa Teresa St)
  6. See a performance at the Memorial Auditorium (https://live.stanford.edu/calendar/all/all/6/all/all, 551 Serra Mall) or listen to a great performance at the Bing Concert Hall (https://live.stanford.edu/calendar/all/all/5/all/all, 327 Lasuen St)
    Bing Concert Hall
  7. Meet the future of education, take a virtual tour of Wallenberg Hall (http://wallenberg.stanford.edu/files/WallenbergHallPodcastTour.m4a, 450 Serra Mall)
  8. See some real geeky artifacts, like the a replica of the HP garage and Google’s first server at the Huang Engineering Center (https://engineering.stanford.edu/about/visit/inside-engineering-quad, 475 Via Ortega) [Also see: Geek out with computer artifacts]
    Google’s first server at the Huang Engineering Center
  9. Hear the Hoover Tower bells, on special occasions, e.g. graduation, the 48 bells will ring (http://visit.stanford.edu/plan/guides/hoover.html)
    Only for peace I ring
  10. Arrange an Engineering Quad Tour or if you are interested in the Stanford sports program you can take the Stanford Athletics and Recreational Opportunities Tour. If art is more your forte you can sign up for the Humanities & Arts Tour (http://visit.stanford.edu/calendar/)
  11. Relax with LGBT, or use it as a photo opp, Gay Liberation sculpture from George Segal (http://125.stanford.edu/taking-a-stand-for-equality/, Lomita Mall)
    Gay Liberation sculpture from George Segal
  12. Be humbled by the Memorial Church history, one of the earliest, and is still among the most prominent, interdenominational churches in the West., tours are every Friday at 1 pm, and the last Sunday of the month at 11:15 am (https://web.stanford.edu/group/religiouslife/cgi-bin/wordpress/memorial-church/history/, 450 Serra Mall)
    Memorial Church, Stanford
  13. Walk the labyrinth, at the Memorial Church every Friday between 8 am and 1 pm or the Windhover at any hour of the day  (https://religiouslife.stanford.edu/programs-events/labyrinth) [Also see: Follow the spiral/spiritual path]
  14. Wonder what’s beneath the bronze plates at the inner Quad, and see what the class of 2016 put in their time capsule (http://news.stanford.edu/2016/06/10/stanford-class-2016-box/, http://125.stanford.edu/hidden-snapshots-history/)
    Bronze plates at the inner Quad, Stanford
  15. Yes, students eat too! Grab some grub (http://visit.stanford.edu/activities/dining.html)
  16. Rally at White Memorial Plaza, the free-speech area on campus (https://sal.stanford.edu/plan-event/venues/outdoor-spaces/white-memorial-plaza, from outside the Barnum Family Center to the front of Dinkelspiel Auditorium)
    White Memorial Plaza, Stanford
  17. Buy some Stanford appeal; oh and books too (http://www.bkstr.com/stanfordstore/home, 519 Lasuen Mall)
    Stanford book store
  18. Listen and enjoy the Mariachi Cardenal, or go to a free class, Mondays from 6:00-8:00 pm in the Casa Zapata lounge (http://web.stanford.edu/group/mariachi/cgi-bin/index.php, Casa Zapata lounge)
  19. Tune in to the Civil Rights, at the Archive of Recorded Sounds,  (http://library.stanford.edu/blogs/special-collections-unbound/2017/05/kzsu-project-south-exhibit-features-streaming-audio-and, 541 Lasuen Mall)
  20. Photo Opp: The Burghers of Calais, Rodin’s commemoration of the six Frenchman who offered their lives in the English siege of Calais. (http://museum.stanford.edu/view/rodin.html)
    The Burghers of Calais, Rodin
  21. Explore the Cantor Arts Center (http://museum.stanford.edu, 328 Lomita Drive at Museum Way), or take a free tour of the highlights, Friday 1 – 2 pm, Saturday 3 – 4 pm, and Sunday 12 – 1 pm (http://museum.stanford.edu/visit/public_tours.html)
    Cantor Arts Center at Stanford University
  22. Walk a self-guided tour of plants, animals and science art (https://web.stanford.edu/group/stanfordbirds/Sci_Art_Nat_Walk_Podcast.html)
  23. Listen to a distinguisted speaker of AI (Artificial Intelligence) (http://ai.stanford.edu/events/ai-distinguished-speakers-series/)
  24. Learn about the Jasper Ridge Preserve and the natural history of the Santa Cruz Mountains, docent-led tours from October through May (Friday, Saturday, Sunday) (http://jrbp.stanford.edu/visit)
  25. Admire the Main Quad, the 12 original classrooms, designed by Frederick Law Olmsted in 1891
    Main Quad, Stanford
  26. Take an outdoor sculpture walk, First Sunday of each month at 2 pm, Third Sunday of each month at 11:30 am (http://museum.stanford.edu/visit/public_tours.html), or explore all outdoor art by yourself (https://www.google.com/maps/d/viewer?mid=1SqPBK1aN4Dq4Uf_IL_WmNQb3loE&ll=37.42731773412959%2C-122.16944826574309&z=16) [Also see: Sit by the stone river]
    Goldworthy's Stone River
  27. See modern art at the Anderson Collection, tours are Wednesdays at 12:30 pm, Saturdays and Sundays at 12:30 pm and 2:30 pm (http://anderson.stanford.edu, 314 Lomita Drive) [Also see: Soundsuit up!]
  28. Be enchanted at the Papua New Guinea Sculpture Garden, tours are third Sundays of the Month, 2 pm (http://museum.stanford.edu/visit/public_tours.html, https://web.stanford.edu/~mjpeters/png/, 476 Lomita Dr) [Also see: You decide: Rodin vs. Papua New Guinea]
    Papua New Guinea Sculpture Garden, Stanford
  29. See where it all began, and why it’s called ‘The Farm’, the Red Barn (http://web.stanford.edu/group/set/cgi-bin/wordpress/, 100 Electioneer Road) [Also see: Can horses fly?]
    The Red Barn, part of the Stanford Equestrian
  30. Walk amongst trees (http://trees.stanford.edu/treewalks/treemaps.htm)
  31. Enjoy the Rodin collection, the largest in an American museum, tours are Wednesdays at 2 pm, Saturdays at 11:30 am, Sundays at 3 pm  (http://museum.stanford.edu/view/rodin.html)
    Rodin's Gates of Hell, Stanford
  32. Admire one of Frank Lloyd Wright’s masterpieces, the Hanna House (https://hannahousetours.stanford.edu/index.php, 737 Frenchmans Rd)
    Frank Lloyd Wright’s Hanna House
  33. Hike along the Dish (https://dish.stanford.edu, 400 Reservoir Rd)
  34. Listen to an evening lecture at the SLAC National Accelerator Labaratory (https://www6.slac.stanford.edu/community/public-lectures.aspx, Panofsky Auditorium, 2575 Sand Hill Rd, Menlo Park, CA), or visit the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory on a free 90 minute tour, Tours are offered twice a month, by registration only (https://www6.slac.stanford.edu/community/public-tours, SLAC Orientation Theater, 2575 Sand Hill Rd, Menlo Park, CA)
  35. Watch some incredible college sports event (http://www.gostanford.com)
    Stanford football game
  36. See some art at the Coulter Art Gallery, Tuesday – Sunday; 12pm-6pm (https://art.stanford.edu/exhibition-spaces/coulter, 355 Roth Way)
  37. Take a walk and discover amazing cacti at the Arizona Cactus Garden (https://lbre.stanford.edu/bgm/what-we-do/grounds-services/horticulture-and-landscape/points-interest/arizona-garden, Quarry Road between Campus Drive and Arboretum Road) [Also see: Transport yourself to Arizona]
    Arizona Cactus Garden, Stanford
  38. Be among those who enjoy about 125 bird sightings (http://web.stanford.edu/group/stanfordbirds/text/umaps/maps-walks.html)
  39. Just hang – at the CoHo (http://coho.stanford.edu/, 459 Lagunita Dr)
    The CoHo, Stanford
  40. Take a glimpse at the Hummingbird Garden (https://web.stanford.edu/group/stanfordbirds/GreenLibrary/Hummer_Garden/images/HummerGarden.html, beside Green Library’s East portal)
  41. Engage in jazz at the Stanford Jazz Festival (early August) (https://stanfordjazz.org)
  42. Buy some athletics gear – go Stanford! (http://shop.gostanford.com, 269 Galvez St)
    The Stanford Athletics Shop
  43. Listen to Claw-cappella every Friday at 4:30 pm (https://www.fleetstreet.com/shows, White Plaza)
  44. Tail-gate or fan-fest before the football game (http://www.gostanford.com/sports/2013/4/17/208445471.aspx)
    Tail-gate before a Stanford football game
  45. Regard the Stanford Mausoleum (http://www.atlasobscura.com/places/stanford-mausoleum, btwn Palm Dr & Quarry Rd) (http://125.stanford.edu/where-stanford-began/) (https://cemeterytravel.com/2013/11/06/cemetery-of-the-week-115-the-stanford-mausoleum/)
    Stanford Mausoleum
  46. Find the tiger salamander (https://hcp.stanford.edu/salamander.html,  Lake Lagunita ) (http://www.stanforddaily.com/2017/03/03/university-urges-against-water-activities-in-newly-full-lake-lagunita/)
  47. Admire the community gardens (https://rde.stanford.edu/dining/bewell-community-gardens, one near the Medical School and one near the Munger Complex)
    Entrance to the BeWell community garden
  48. Pick up some fresh fruit and veggies at the Farmer’s market on Tuesdays from 10 am to 2 pm (https://studentaffairs.stanford.edu/events/farmers-market-0, Tresidder Union Front Patio)
    Farmer market, Stanford
  49. Eat from the farm at the farm – Forbes Family Cafe (https://rde.stanford.edu/hospitality/forbes-family-caf)
  50. Celebrate Native American history at the Powwow, 11th – 13th May, 2018 (http://powwow.stanford.edu, Eucalyptus Grove at Galvez and Campus Drives)

While you are in the area you should also check out Palo Alto.

As always no affiliations with the mentioned businesses unless otherwise noted. Dates are for 2018. Please let me know of any changes or mistakes. All images are mine, please don’t use without permission. © 2018.