Speaking of California, I teamed up with Norwegian who has a new route opening to Oakland. They asked me to find a few spots I would check out if my next stop was Oakland, and since I’m never one to say no to find new cool places I can dream of visiting, here goes.
I actually have been to Oakland before, well that is if driving through from San Francisco on my way to Berkeley University counts. I don’t remember much, but as I experienced from my visit to Boston, sometimes it pays off to visit places that’s off the beaten track.
Oakland is the perfect spot if you’re also looking to visit San Francisco and if you want to explore further, there are plenty of options for a roadtrip in the area. Norwegian even has a whole site dedicated to roadtripping there, have a look here.
My first search on Oakland showed that it’s just about 10 km from San Francisco, it’s home to the very first mai tai drink, it has the busiest port in the San Francisco Bay and Hells Angels is said to have started here. Interesting huh?
Here’s 10 more reasons to visit Oakland.
Blue Bottle Coffee
I’ve visited Blue Bottle Coffee in both LA and Tokyo, but who knew it’s originally from Oakland? It’s worth the hype, it really is a great cup of coffee! They have two locations in their hometown.
300 Webster Street and 4270 Broadway, Bluebottlecoffee.com
Where to get some shopping done? Luckily you don’t have to go all over the city, because it seems McMullen has everything you need: Carven, Aquazzura, J.W. Anderson, Marni, Frame Denim and many more brands are on the shelves. The real challenge here is to leave empty handed!
1235 Grand Avenue, Shopmcmullen.com
Oakland Museum of California
A few years ago the Oakland Museum of California got a facelift. They have a lot of different exhibions on view, one that caugt my eye was Out Of The Box: The Rise Of Sneaker Culture going until April 2nd.
1000 Oak Street, Museumca.org
Grand Lake Kitchen
Not that these pictures need much explaining, but I’ll give you a reason to go anyway. Grand Lake Kitchen supposedly has the best brunch in town, and their outdoor seating was made for people watching. The recipe for a great Saturday morning if you ask me!
576 Grand Avenue, Grandlakekitchen.com
How about a relaxing spa day, now that you’re on vacation? At Piedmont Springs you can book your own private outdoor hot tub and relax on a sunny afternoon or a starry night. If you’re in for a real treat you can also book a massage. Count me in!
3939 Piedmont Avenue, Piedmontsprings.com
Who can say no to a superb pizza? Not me, and I’d love to check out Pizzaiolo. The menu changes daily, but I’m hoping they still have the tomato sauce, ricotta, black olives and mint pizza the day I stop by! They also have a selection of antipastis and other Italian goodies, and if that’s not enough for you they’re also open for breakfast. Can you say breakfast sandwich?
5008 Telegraph Avenue, Pizzaiolooakland.com
Redwood Regional Park
Just a short ride from Oakland you’ll find Redwood Regional Park, containing the largest remaining natural stand of coast redwood in the East Bay. Most of these trees are over 100 years old! This looks like a great Sunday trip.
Redwood Road, Ebparks.org/parks/redwood
Why would I seek up a Japanese store in Oakland? Well, why not!? I love Japan and I’d love to see the Bay Area version of it. This cute store sells supplies for your home bar and kitchen, Japanese sake and beer and lots of cute gifts like ceramics and posters. They also host events like Japan Beer Fest.
815 Broadway, Umamimart.com
Oakland is surrounded by water, so of course a stay with sea view is a must! The Waterfront Hotel has a chic maritime theme going on and a heated pool if you’re up for a swim.
10 Washington Street, website.
Grand Lake Farmers Market
I love visiting farmers markets when I travel, and this is supposed to be the best in the East Bay. Over 40 local farmers and 30 specialty food vendors selling flowers, veggies, fruit, meats, cheese, coffee … Couldn’t think of a better Saturday!
Open every Saturday, year round, 9am-2pm, Lake Park Avenue.
This post is sponsored by Norwegian.