Two days in Oakland? With so many great neighborhoods, activities, restaurants, and more, it seems impossible to see it all in just 48 hours. Have fun exploring a list we created of suggested activities while you’re visiting our city.
Waterfront Adventure: Steps from Downtown, Yet Worlds Away
Get your morning started in Jack London Square, Oakland’s historic waterfront. Enjoy expansive lawns, picturesque piers, and an abundance of history, all in one place. Grab a coffee at the Blue Bottle Coffee headquarters, where you taste coffee from one of the fastest growing coffee purveyors in the country. Walk over to Home of Chicken and Waffles for a taste of sweet and savory at this local favorite hangout. Experience breathtaking views on the adventurous speed boat, the Bay Voyager, or try kayaking and stand-up paddle boarding at California Canoe & Kayak.
Lunch options in the area are abundant. Sit along the water at Lungomare, a new Italian hotspot overlooking the docked boats. For more casual dining, head to The Forge for delicious wood-oven, hand-crafted artisan pizzas. Dine outside for the best views.
Docked nearby is a piece of history—the USS Potomac, or “The Floating White House. “ The ship served as Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s Presidential Yacht until his death in 1945. Docent led tours are given and it’s a sure way to unleash the history buff inside you.
Don’t want to make the trek to wine country? Explore Oakland’s growing urban winery scene along the waterfront and Jack London Square. There are many options, including Urban Legend Cellars, Dashe Cellars, Cerruti Cellars.
Dine with well-renowned chefs in Oakland, including Michelin star chef Daniel Patterson’s at his latest restaurant Haven. Cap off your day at Yoshis, an award-winning 330-seat jazz club. Your visit to Jack London Square wouldn’t be complete without a stop at Heinold’s First and Last Chance Saloon, where author Jack London once studied.
Neighborhoods & Views
Begin your day in Rockridge, just a short BART or bus ride from Downtown or Uptown Oakland. From vintage and collectible shops to comic books and motorcycles —it’s all inRockridge, a shopping district spanning almost 14 blocks of College Avenue. Stroll through Market Hall for your morning coffee or pastry, and plenty of shopping, too. This European-style marketplace has unique architectural design as well as eight individual food and flower shops, which open to the sidewalk. Enjoy the hustle and bustle of this vibrant neighborhood for lunch at Wood Tavern or Southie, its sister restaurant. Don’t forget to grab a large ice cream sundae at the Dreyer’s Ice Cream headquarters store.
Once you’ve conquered College Avenue, head for the hills for some of the best views of the Bay Area. Begin the afternoon with a hike through Redwood Regional Park, where you’ll be among 150- foot tall Redwoods. After taking in the sights, head over to Chabot Space & Science Center to engage in interactive exhibits such as Bill Nye’s Climate Lab, or view the stars through one of Chabot’s three telescopes, representing the largest public telescope facility in the country. As you head back down the hill, spend some time walking throughout the magnificent gardens at the highly recognized East Bay landmark, The Oakland California Mormon Temple.
End your busy day in Montclair Village, a vibrant Oakland neighborhood with a laid-back, small town feel. Choose from many restaurants including Kakui Sushi and Italian Colors, or grab a beer at a local favorite, Crogan’s Montclair Restaurant & Bar.
Recommended hotel for this trip: The Claremont Hotel Club & Spa