College Avenue stretches from deep within Berkeley to Oakland, and along this bustling boulevard numerous restaurants, boutiques, cafes, and much more are waiting for your enjoyment. Near the Rockridge end of the street you will find many eclectic restaurants serving an enormous variety of cuisines, as well as other small boutique shops selling anything from yoga mats to antique brass bedposts. Near the University, College Avenue takes on a funkier spirit, and incense shops allure you with their intriguing scents. Shopping is a major attraction of this East Bay hot spot, yet there are not many chain stores. Rather, locals prefer to support local businesses instead of national chains. However certain stores, such as Urban Outfitters, American Apparel, and Hot Topic, can still be found conveniently nearby. Great for a Sunday walk where you can leisurely stroll down this beautiful avenue - stop and have a coffee at one of many cafes, or buy a unique present for a special someone!
Perennially ranked among the top universities in the world, this 1,232-acre (499-hectare) campus offer visitors as well as students museums, libraries, superb views from the Campanile, public lectures by Nobel laureates, world class entertainment and NCAA sports. Founded in 1868, Cal is the first university in the University of California system. Campus life centers on Sproul Plaza and Sather Gate where you can find a reminder of Berkeley's place in American social history by seeing a plaque marking the spot where Mario Savio launched the Free Speech movement in 1964. Free tours are available, but reservations are required.
This popular park is a 2,077-acre wilderness wonderland with a variety of attractions for the sports enthusiast or naturalist, or anyone in need of some recreation. Popular activities include swimming, horseback riding, hiking, mountain biking, sunbathing, exploring, golf, picnicking, fishing, pony rides, train rides and bike rides. It also features a lake, golf course, petting zoo, a mini steam train, a carousel and endless trails to explore. Do not miss the Regional Parks Botanical Garden, home to the world's most complete collection of California native plants.
Built in 1922, The Castro Theatre is San Francisco's only remaining movie palace. When it's not hosting film festivals, this 1400-seat house runs a repertory calendar heavy on film classics; there is no better place to see The Wizard of Oz. The interior reflects the elegance of a bygone era with its red velvet seats and walls that feature molded plaster and fresco detailing. The fanciful ceiling, from which an imposing art deco chandelier hangs, is designed to evoke the interior of a Bedouin tent. A mighty Wurlitzer organ plays between evening shows and completes the antique feel of the theater.
Developed by physicist Frank Oppenheimer and opened in 1969, this innovative and interactive museum is dedicated to art, science and human perception. Relocated from the Palace of Fine Arts to Piers 15 and 17, the modern space features plenty of new green technologies including the largest solar panel roof in San Francisco and offers over 600 hands-on exhibits. These hands-on displays unveil the mysteries of science and language, and present these theories simply and succinctly. Webinars, special events and seminars occur throughout the year. This San Francisco gem is a must visit.
Oakland Museum of California is an architectural work of art and is filled with a variety of educational exhibits, both permanent and temporary, that chronicles many aspects of California history. The permanent displays include a gallery of California art, a simulated journey through California's diverse ecosystems, and exhibits on the history of the state's multicultural populations. Many people visit the museum just to stroll through its amazing sculpture garden. With artworks and historical heritage of the past, the museum wants to motivate visitors to create an equally brilliant cultural heritage for the future. This museum is a must-visit especially for those who love exploring historical developments peculiar to an area.