Inhabited for centuries by the Native American Lamchin tribe before the arrival of the Spanish in November 1769, the city of San Carlos takes its name from the first European ship to arrive in the San Francisco Bay on the day of the Feast of Saint Charles as the King Charles III of Spain sought to consolidate his holdings in “Alta California”. The first non-Spanish settlers to arrive were prospectors from the Sierra Nevada during the 1849 Gold Rush who bought land from wealthy Spanish landowners. Incorporated in 1925, residential and agricultural development accelerated in the 1940s and 1950s with the introduction of electronics plants and the arrival of Varian Technologies (now Agilent Technologies), one of the first high tech companies in the Silicon Valley. San Carlos today has grown into a prosperous community situated between the San Francisco Bay on the east, the Santa Cruz mountains to the west, Belmont to the north, and San Mateo to the south.
San Carlos’ motto is “The City of Good Living!”, and it certainly lives up to its moniker! And, since a good life involves good eating, local residents have the opportunity for a great life with an expansive array of dining options. Downtown Laurel Street offers a number of sophisticated options that highlight the city’s rich cultural diversity. American food can be found at Johnston’s Saltbox, traditional Hawaiian food is offered at Noelani’s Island Grill, and CreoLa Bistro serves cajun-creole food in true Louisiana style. Laurel Street also offers international cuisine including Afghan, Chinese, Peruvian, French, Italian, and Indian, and wine tasting is available from one of more than five local wineries. Getting to and from San Carlos from other Silicon Valley communities and San Francisco is via the 82 and 101 and 280 freeways, and a Caltrain station and local bus service aid in public transportation.
Families also benefit from good living in San Carlos! The city’s public elementary schools consistently have high ratings, and high school students typically go on to neighboring Sequoia High School, Carlmont High School or Woodside High School. Shop locally for the family at the downtown farmer’s market held every Sunday, then explore the Hiller Aviation Museum to learn about the history of flight. The Rockin’ Jump Trampoline Park will keep kids of all ages happy (and their parents, too!). Some of the city’s many community events include May’s “Hometown Days”, a weekend of parades, live entertainment, food, and crafts, and the San Carlos Art and Wine Faire is an October tradition. Take time to relax with the family all summer long with music and movies put on by the city in Burton Park, or take a hike at the Pulgas Ridge Reserve at the base of the Santa Cruz mountains, bike along the San Francisco Bay Trail or on routes along Cañada Road.
It’s all here in San Carlos– the truly exceptional City of Good Living!
Housing market data
Listings in San Carlos
Browse through the active listings in San Carlos