The East Bay is a small area, but a giant when it comes to ethnic diversity, culture and physical activities. Located east of San Francisco and the Golden Gate Area, East Bay is home to the cities of Berkeley, Fremont, and Oakland, each presenting many options for water sport adventures. In the Oakland area, over 100 languages and dialects are spoken and the wide range of restaurants and shops reflect these varied groups. Berkeley is universally known for the leading education and research facility—the University of California at Berkeley. Many Berkeley theaters, ballets, symphony orchestras, operas, and museums provide exciting cultural entertainment. Hiking and picnics are popular getaways for folks at Mission Peak in Fremont and kids of all ages love the local Skate Park and Karts-N-Golf amusement park. The Oakland Museum of California draws visitors to its impressive galleries, gardens, terraces, and ponds.
The small size of Berkeley belies its reputation as a major cultural and intellectual hub in the United States. Located on San Francisco Bay, this city is home to the University of California Berkeley, which is known the world over as an innovator in technology and modern thought. The social and cultural diversity is apparent in many of the city’s attractions, from Takara Sake USA, a Japanese sake-tasting museum, to the Berkeley Opera Company. Beyond the wealth of cultural attractions, Berkeley also offers several parks and urban forests that lend themselves to picnics, walks, and other outdoor recreation opportunities. The Berkeley Marina is another local landmark and is home to an annual kite festival that sees enthusiasts taking advantage of the ocean breezes to launch a wide variety of stringed flyers. The Marina is also used as a venue for the Fourth of July festivities, just one of the many festivals that take place in Berkeley throughout the year.
The city of Fremont is located just south of Oakland in Alameda County. From bikes to buses to trains, Fremont offers visitors a choice of transportation while in the city that allows for easy accessibility to all attractions and activities. Combining history, art, and outdoor recreation into a desirable travel destination complete with a wide range of accommodations, Fremont has all the amenities of a larger center yet retains the charm of a smaller city. Two of the historic attractions that draw visitors are the Ardenwood Historic Farm and the Mission San Jose Cemetery, both of which offer a glimpse into the development of the area through the years, as well as the lives of former residents who built the city into what it is today. Fremont is also home to Shinn Historical Arboretum, a five-acre collection of trees and shrubs that have been assembled from around the world.
California is a culturally rich state and Oakland is considered one of the most ethnically diverse cities; over 100 languages and dialects are spoken in the city. Not surprisingly, area restaurants reflect the varied tastes of the residents, and shops and entertainment provide choices to suit everyone. Oakland rests on the east side of San Francisco Bay and this close proximity to the sea offers many opportunities for water sports and boating adventures. Professional sporting events are popular; the region supports the Oakland Raiders National Football League (NFL) team, the Oakland Athletics Major League Baseball (MLB) team, and the Golden State Warriors National Basketball Association (NBA) team. The Oakland Zoo, Western Aerospace Museum and the Oakland Museum of California draw visitors from all over the globe. For a night on the town or fantastic shopping, visitors flock to Jack London Square—a waterfront area that is buzzing with restaurants, outdoor markets, hotels, and nightclubs.
Sights & Attractions
African-American Museum and Library
The African American Museum and Library at Oakland is dedicated to the preservation and presentation of African Americans’ history and their experiences. Housed within the historic landmark are a Reference Library, an Archive and a Museum. Address: 659 14th /street | Oakland, CA | 94612-1242. Telephone: 1 510 637-0200
The Berkeley Marina encompasses 52 acres and features 975 berths, each equipped with lockers, electrical outlets and water. Restrooms and showers are also available. The Berkeley Marina is also home to a number of festivals and is a local landmark. Address: 201 University Ave. | Berkeley, CA | 94710
Chadbourne Carriage House
The Chadbourne Carriage House recalls the days when horses were the main mode of transportation. Today, this carriage house is used for the annual Halloween Ghost House, which features a maze and other children’s activities. Address: 39169 Fremont Boulevard | Fremont, CA
Jack London Square
East Bay’s number one attraction. Jack London Square is the home of 15 restaurants, specialty shops, USS Potomac, and Yoshi’s Jazz Club. Accessible via ferry from San Francisco.
Address: Foot of Broadway | Oakland, CA | 94607
Ardenwood Historic Farm
The Ardenwood Historic Farm features park staff dressed in Victorian costumes and demonstrations of traditional farm chores. The Patterson House is also located on the property, and guided tours are available for interested visitors. Address: 34600 Ardenwood Boulevard | Fremont, CA
Mission San Jose and Cemetery Fremont
Founded in 1797, the Mission San Jose was the 14th of 21 Spanish missions established in California. The mission is home to the oldest surviving monastery in California. The cemetery holds the graves of many prominent Spanish and American settlers. Address: 43300 Mission Boulevard | Fremont, CA
Museum of Children’s Art Oakland
The Museum of Children’s Art in Oakland features artwork by kids for kids. Classes are also offered at this facility, which can be found on 9th Street. Address: 538 9th Street | Oakland, CA | 94607
Oakland Museum of California
Housed in an architecturally innovative three-tiered complex of galleries, gardens, terraces, and ponds, the Oakland Museum of California’s collections, special exhibitions and educational programs provide a broader understanding of California’s history, art, nature, and people. Address: 1000 Oak St. | Oakland, CA | 94607
The Oakland Zoo encompasses 525 acres of land in Knowland Park and is home to over 400 native and exotic animals, including African lions, bearded dragons, Bengal tiger and more. The zoo is open daily from 10am to 4pm, except on Thanksgiving and Christmas. Address: 9777 Golf Links Rd. | Oakland, CA | 94605. Telephone: 1 510 632-9525
Pardee Home Museum
The Pardee Home is an architectural treasure of California. Address: 672-11th St. | Oakland, CA | 94607-3651. Telephone: 1 510 444-2187
Shinn Historical Park and Arboretum
The Shinn Historical Park and Arboretum feature buildings that span three generations of ranch life. The Victorian ranch house was built in 1876 and features authentic antique furnishings and memorabilia. A cottage built in the 1840s is one of the oldest frame houses in the Santa Clara Valley. Five acres of trees, rare plants and shrubs from around the world are also featured at this site. Address: 1251 Peralta Boulevard | Fremont, CA
USS Potomac Oakland
One of the few floating museums in the country, the USS Potomac features exhibits on many former presidents of the United States. Located at FDR Pier in Oakland, CA. Address: FDR Pier | Oakland, CA | 94604
Western Aerospace Museum
The Western Aerospace Museum in Oakland features exhibits on aviation and space history. Historic aircraft, aviation memorabilia, historic photos, model planes and war artifacts are on display at this little-known museum. Address: 8260 Boeing St. | Oakland, CA | 94614