Gilroy, California is centrally located at the southern gateway to Silicon Valley and proud to be “A Community with a Spice for Life.”
Having gained fame as the “Garlic Capital of the World,” Gilroy has grown from its early agricultural roots into a vibrant, family-friendly city of nearly 60,000 residents. Along the way, Gilroy has managed to hold on to its genuine small-town charm, natural open spaces, and strong community spirit.
Things to Do in Gilroy
Gilroy is probably best known for the annual Gilroy Garlic Festival, which started in 1979 and has drawn hundreds of thousands of garlic lovers from around the world. The entire event is staffed by volunteers working together to benefit local school groups, charities, and non-profit organizations. There are also a number of garlic shops and restaurants where people can enjoy genuine Gilroy garlic all year long.
Other main attractions include Gilroy Gardens Family Theme Park. a magical wonderland that features over 40 fun rides and attractions, majestic gardens, and the world-famous Circus Trees. Gilroy Premium Outlets is one of Northern California’s largest outlet centers, where shoppers enjoy everyday savings of 25-65% on over 145 top designer brands. Gilroy also has over 20 wineries and tasting rooms located along the Santa Clara Valley Wine Trail.
Historic Downtown Gilroy is home to several outstanding restaurants, including the iconic Old City Hall Restaurant, The Milias Restaurant, and Garlic City Café, as well as antique stores, art galleries, boutiques, breweries, coffee shops, authentic Mexican restaurants, and more.
Gilroy is also a great place to enjoy outdoor adventures, with several golf courses, well-maintained city parks, and many hiking and biking trails at nearby Mt. Madonna, Coyote Lake, and Henry W. Coe parks.
For more information about these and other attractions in and around Gilroy, go to VisitGilroy.com.
Gilroy's Mediterranean climate strikes a pleasant balance that has proven to be perfect for agriculture and recreation. Nestled at the southern end of the Santa Clara Valley between the Diablo and Santa Cruz mountain ranges, Gilroy residents enjoy mild year-round temperatures while missing most of the coastal fog. A state climatology report says up to 70% of Gilroy's days are sunny, with an average rainfall of about 20 inches.
Gilroy is a growing community with a population of about 56,766 (2019 U.S. Census Projections), representing 3% of Santa Clara County. The 2018 U.S. Census ethnic breakdown of the City's population shows approximately 60% Hispanic, 30% Caucasian, 9% Asian, and 1% African American.
Average home costs in the area are in the $680,500 range.
Gilroy Industry & Economy
Historically, Gilroy's economy was based in agricultural products and processing. Over the years, prunes, tomatoes, flowers, onions, and, of course, garlic, have contributed to the city’s economic growth.
Gilroy is also home to several food processing companies and government centers that employ many local residents. Gilroy Premium Outlets and other large retail centers draw shoppers from all over the Bay Area and Central Coast regions.
Gilroy is strategically located in southern Silicon Valley, approximately 25 miles south of San Jose, California. It has excellent freeway access to the entire Bay Area, the Salinas Valley, and Central California. Gilroy is also a planned stop for the proposed High Speed Rail line from San Francisco to Los Angeles.
Today, Gilroy continues to diversify its economy through retail, light industry, technology, and recreational development. About 1,000 acres remain available for industrial growth.
There are 14 public schools in the Gilroy Unified School District. Enrollment in the district is about 11,000 students. The School Board, which sets policy, adopts the budget and hires personnel, is made up of seven members elected to four-year terms. The district has about 1,100 employees. Five private schools serve an additional 400 students, and approximately 4,500 students attend Gavilan Community College.
Gilroy City Government
Gilroy is a charter city with a seven-member City Council elected to four-year terms, including a separately elected mayor who can serve any number of terms. The City of Gilroy employs approximately 245 full-time and many part-time employees, with an annual operating budget of $57.5 million.