East Bay Regional Parks
Oakland is the beneficiary of some very forward thinking preservationists of the 1920s who set aside huge tracts of land that later became the East Bay Regional Parks. These vast and expansive parks along the Oakland and Berkeley Hills ridgeline are complemented by dozens of parks throughout the city, which are connected to hiking trails and offer public swimming pools, nature centers and places to get married or host a special event. With places to go like Sibley Park, Redwood Park, Lake Temescal, Diamond Park, Mosswood Park and Middle Harbor Park, you’ll never get bored.
Fenton’s Ice Creamery
For over 102 years, Fenton’s Creamery, an old-fashioned ice cream parlor, has been dishing up mountains of home crafted ice cream and other soda fountain treats. From a simple scoop of vanilla to a grilled cheese sandwich to Fenton’s Special—with alternating layers of pineapple, strawberry, chocolate fudge and caramel sauces over vanilla, strawberry, chocolate and toasted almond ice cream, crowned with your choice of sherbet slices, almonds, whipped cream and a cherry — the menu offers something for everyone. It’s rare you won’t find a line at the door because it’s just that good.
Chapel of the Chimes
Designed in 1928 by Julia Morgan in the Beaux Arts style with Moorish influences, this beautiful mausoleum features elegant and well-proportioned spaces that, by day, fill with natural light streaming through its stained glass windows. Today it is the venue of popular bi-monthly afternoon Jazz at the Chimes music concerts open to the public for a nominal cost. They host other seasonal music concerts as well as educational events. Tours of the historic building and diverse landscape can also be arranged.
You, your family and friends will enjoy strolling mornings, afternoon and evenings to enjoy the ever changing and interesting array of shopping, restaurants and street life along Piedmont Avenue. The avenue enjoys a rich commercial history dating back to at least 1876, when a horse-powered street railway was installed to take visitors from downtown Oakland to the cemeteries at the top of the hill. It has seen saloons, hotels, restaurants, groceries, a nickelodean movie house, churches and barber shops come and go. Today it is still one of the most vibrant shopping districts in the East Bay.
Historic Mountain View Cemetery
Designed in the late 1800s by landscape architect, Frederick Law Olmsted (of Golden Gate Park, Yosemite and NYC’s Central Park fame), Mountain View Cemetery invites you to stroll, jog or walk your dog through history, surrounded by native oaks, Italian stone pines and lush gardens. Here, from the top of the hill, you can sit and enjoy the very best view of San Francisco and the Golden Gate Bridge.