California: Things to See and Do in Oakland (Tourist Attractions)

People travel to Oakland for sporting events, to visit family, for work or even as a day trip from San Francisco. Oakland is right over the Bay Bridge. So whatever the reason, if you are ever in the area, here are 5 things to do in Oakland:

1: Piedmont:

Visit Piedmont Avenue. Piedmont is a small city within a city. A lot of people still consider it Oakland but technically it is its own city.

Piedmont Avenue is a street about 2 miles long. There are a number of local shops along this strip that are fun to window shop or for actual gift shopping. There is FOOD! And…..Fentons Ice Creamery! Fentons has been in business since 1894. Truly an experience!

2: Grand Avenue & Lakeshore Avenue:

Grand Avenue and Lakeshore Avenue have a number of spots to visit!

Lake Merrit is right there. For a nice walk or jog – it is about 3 miles around. On that walk, you can check out Fairyland or visit Lake Merrit’s Nature Center OR stroll through the Gardens at Lake Merritt.

Over on Grand Avenue: Go see a movie at the Grand Lake Theater. This theater opened in 1926. It is a historical landmark and if you watch a movie in the main theater – sometimes they have an organ player play before the movie starts. For a cool evening hang out spot , check out the Lucky Lounge.

3: Lake Temescal:

Lake Temescal is a childhood favorite of mine. I had many birthday parties there. You can actually swim in the lake, chill at the park (there are 2 separate parts) or hike around the whole like (there are a few trails).

4: Morcom Rose Garden:

For a romantic walk through fragrant and beautiful greenery, head out to the Morcom Rose Garden.  Many a wedding has been held here. I have gone here by myself, with a mate or with friends and family. Pack a lunch and enjoy the scenery!

5: Jack London Square:

For an evening out, Jack London Square is a cool hang out area. There are a number of night clubs, lounges and bars to frequent:

  1. Lukas
  2. Yoshi’s Oakland
  3. Kimball’s Carnival

And if you are not looking for nightlife, simply park the car and walk around Jack London Square. There are a number of shops and restaurants at your disposal. Here are a few notable places to eat:

  1. It’s All Good Bakery
  2. Barney’s Gourmet Hamburger
  3. Crepe Vine (technically in Berkeley)

By the way…

Oakland is on the map if you didn’t already know. Here’s brief list of why Oakland is notable:

  1. Oakland Raiders (and yes – I am a fan)
  2. Oakland A’s
  3. Golden State Warriors
  4. Historic Black Panther Party (Huey P. Newton)
  5. Actor Tom Hanks, Actor/Director Clint Eastwood
  6. Rappers Tupac Shakur, MC Hammer and Too short
Molla Enger Written by:

Molla Enger was born in Dallas, Texas to a recently immigrated Korean mother and Caucasian father. Naming her the Korean word for ‘I don’t know’, Molla comes from a background that has a story to tell. One parent being extremely schizophrenic and both parents heavily using drugs in her early years, Molla grew to be very independent and self reliant. Over the formative span of her childhood, moving every 1-2 years in Berkeley and East and West Oakland, her parents eventually separated when she was 10 years old and her father took on all of the parenting duties exposing her to volunteerism, community organizing, American politics and independent thinking. Over her lifetime, she has spent the majority of her time in California but has traveled to Korea, Canada, Seattle, Chicago, New York, Arizona and Nevada. After high school, Molla moved to Memphis, TN for one year and upon returning to California in 1994 she took on a career in health care. She is currently working as a health care IT consultant. Since joining, Molla plans to travel over the next few years with the specific goal in mind of writing about it. Locations on the itinerary range from the Caribbean, New York, Mexico, Rio De Janeiro, Italy, Europe and Hawaii. In the near future, look for articles chronicling California cities such as San Francisco, Los Angeles, Oakland, Berkeley, Stockton, Sacramento, Fountain Valley and Fresno.