Santa Clara

Another road trip!

I have gone on more trips this year than I have in a long time and I’m loving it. This trip to Santa Clara was planned, but a lot of details weren’t finalized until the night before (and packing was finished the morning of so…).

The main reason for going was to see the CONCACAF Gold Cup final and I had purchased the tickets before the group stages even started (this is how much I love futbol/soccer), so obviously, this part was planned out ahead of time as well as the hotel reservations. To make things easier I figured it would be a good idea to drive down the day before the game to explore a bit, stay at a hotel, explore some more, go to the game, and come home the day after.

This worked out great and we got to see a lot while we were there. Once we got to Santa Clara we went to the University campus to see the mission.

The Santa Clara mission was the eighth California mission and the first dedicated to a woman. Originally, the mission was located near the Guadalupe river where the San Jose airport is currently located. It had to be relocated five times because of flooding, fires, and earthquakes.

The mission and surrounding land became a university in 1851 when it was transferred to Jesuit ownership as the Franciscans did not have the funds to maintain the mission as a parish church. This makes Santa Clara University the first college of higher learning in California.

Day two started early and I drove to the Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum in San Jose.

I’ve loved learning about ancient Egypt since I was a child. I had a book about mummies that I would read over and over again until I almost had it memorized. If I was going out with my mom to run errands I would take the book with me. Visiting family? Need my book.

I was obsessed.

When I found out this museum existed and it wasn’t too far away I knew I had to go. I didn’t really look into it aside from location until the night before we were going to leave so no one was sure we would actually be able to go (aside from me because there was no way I would pass this up). The museum was beautiful with its Egyptian architecture and walking through the garden was wonderful. There were a few different rooms with the exhibits (where I took many pictures) and there’s even a model of an actual tomb that you can walk through

We also stopped by Our Lady of Peace Shrine which has a 32-foot tall statue of Our Lady of Peace. The statue is on a grassy hill in front of the church and is visible from Highway 101.




Finally, it was game time! We got an Uber to take us to Levi’s Stadium, home of the San Francisco 49ers. The stadium was built in 2014 and won sports facility of the year and venue of the year in 2015 as well as Gold sustainability certification.

Over all, it was a great game. Both USA and Jamaica did an amazing job. I really wanted the game to go to penalties just to see them in person (penalties are so stressful, but I love them so much). In the end, USA won with a goal at the 88-minute mark. The goal was made when they were on the side closest to us too so we got to see it up close and we stayed until they gave both teams their medals and the cup to USA.


Unfortunately, we had to head home the next day. The weather in Santa Clara was so nice with a light breeze that I didn’t want to leave. I did have something planned for the drive home though.but first I needed something sweet so we stopped at the Jelly Belly factory in Fairfield.

Using the Roadtrippers website to find places we could stop at along the way and I saw the Jelly Belly factory was just off the freeway. We got there about an hour before closing and took the tour. The California factory and the Illinois factory make jelly beans for the USA while the factory in Thailand makes jelly beans to help with international demand.

Honestly, the jelly bean art was my favorite part. If only I had the patience to find enough jelly beans in the colors I need to make a piece of art. Or at least enough patience to not eat the art I would try to make…


There were many more things in the Santa Clara/San Jose area that I was not able to do or see so hopefully I can find time for another quick trip to return in the near future. Until then, I’ll just plan for the next one… or, maybe I’ll wing it when I have a free weekend.

Happy travels!


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