Our favourite ways to spend summer in Oakland, CA

The home of Marshawn Lynch, Mahershala Ali, Kehlani, Mark Hamill, Tom Hanks, Daniel Wu and the Hyphy movement, Oakland’s presence on the East Bay is felt through its contributions to Sport, Music and Cinema. This ability to inspire and create is imbued in the city and its people, and is apparent in all it has to offer to visitors. Read on for some of our favourite ways to spend the summertime in Oakland. 

Oakland Zoo

The Oakland Zoo is a fun day’s trip to visit some of the most interesting locals of Oakland, among the Emu, Gila Monster, African Elephant, Bison, Black Bear, Chimpanzee, Hamadryas Baboon and Wallaroos. The Oakland Zoo’s value on learning also provides for unique experiences by appointment, including early-morning visits, a separate Education Animal Room, helping feed the animals, and a look into the workings of the Oakland Zoo Veterinary Hospital. The animals are grouped by biomes, and provide a range of experiences for adult travellers and families alike, with transportation around the Zoo including a Gondola and Train, a separate rides area and a sightseeing trail providing views over the Bay Area. 

Chabot Space and Science Center

The Chabot Space & Science Center is a great visit to learn about the workings of our Space Program and the wonders of Outer Space. At The Chabot Space and Science Center, you can enter an interactive replica of Jet Propulsion Laboratory’s Mission Control, observe a Soyuz Descent module up close, see a Moon rock from Apollo 15, and learn about our Sun and the constellations. Overnight opportunities are also available by appointment, allowing for a guided tour of the stars with Telescopes, and a more intensive experience. 

Laurel StreetFair

Filling the streets of Oakland with colour, music and celebration is the Laurel StreetFair, a local tradition of twenty-one years. At the Laurel StreetFair visitors enjoy Oaklands love of the arts with World Music Talent, from Aztec music and Dance, Brazilian Samba, Cumbia and Afro-Brazilian inspired fusions. Yoga and Spoken Word poetry also take the stage, for those wanting a more interactive or introspective experience. Art, clothing and food vendors also come to the Laurel StreetFair, offering a delicious selection of Hawaiian Shave Ice, Giant Sausages, Soul Food, African Food, Mexican Fare and Chinese restaurants.

Art & Soul

Oakland’s Art & Soul Festival is another great opportunity for visitors to experience the city’s love of the arts and creativity. Each summer, locals express themselves through dance, (and dance battles!) contortion, acrobatics, mural painting and live music including Blues, Funk, Rock, R&B and Gospel. The display of conviviality and talent is inclusive, with many ways for visitors to participate in the electricity. Ever present is Oakland’s wealth of delicious cuisine, reflecting the diversity of the city, as well as a Fun zone set up with rides and carnival games. Some of the performers at Art & Soul Oakland include Estelle, the Alphabet Rockers, Bobby Young, Tiffany Austin and Jonathan Johnson. 

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