Once populated with just summer cottages and apricot orchards, the town of Los Altos is now a highly affluent suburb in northern Silicon Valley. It’s famous for its role in Silicon Valley’s roots: in 1976, Steve Jobs and built the first 50 Apple computers in his Los Altos garage, and in 2004, Mark Zuckerberg saw the takeoff of Facebook in his rented Los Altos home.
Today, the town intentionally remains a small gem tucked between much larger cities. Part of the city’s ongoing mission is to preserve Los Altos’s uniquely rural qualities — street lights are rare along the mostly dirt roads, and the city enforces residential lot minimums of at least a quarter of an acre. The town pioneered sound baffling technology with its sound walls along Foothill Expwy, which significantly decreased noise pollution from traffic. And with three creeks running through the town and several hiking trails, town residents find themselves living side-to-side with natural Californian flora and fauna.
The Los Altos School District is annually ranked among the best in California. It includes seven public elementary schools spanning Los Altos and Mountain View, and high schoolers attend any of the well-regarded public high schools in the Mountain View - Los Altos district or the Fremont district. Additionally, many families opt for prestigious private schools around the area, including several K-8 schools and distinguished preparatory high schools like St. Francis, Mitty, Harker, and Woodside Priory.
Los Altos’s small-town atmosphere comes hand-in-hand with its tight-knit community. The town hosts several city-wide festivities each year. In the first weekend of May, furry friends from hamsters to horses come out for the resident-favorite Pet Parade. Then there’s the Halloween festival, a Main St Parade, and an annual Festival Lights Parade featuring elaborate floats and high school marching bands to celebrate the beginning of the holiday season. And for the last four decades, the Los Altos Arts and Wine Festival has featured local vintages, craft beers, deliciously diverse foods, and free concerts.
Strolling down Downtown Los Altos, it’s easy to feel the small-town vibes that distinguish Los Altos within the Bay Area. With over 150 quaint shops all offering unique goods — from gems to high tea to groceries, exploring downtown is a timeless experience. Catch a summer sidewalk sale or a city-organized beer stroll, or do your weekly grocery shopping with the locals at the farmer’s market every Thursday in the summer and fall. However, it’s certainly not a town fit for those seeking lively local nightlife — even shops downtown close in the late afternoon or early evening, and there are more cozy bookshops than bars.
Interested in buying a home in Los Altos or in the surrounding areas? Get in touch with our team at firstname.lastname@example.org for personalized insights and recommendations!
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