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Best things to do in Contra Costa County

Discover the city through the eyes of locals. Find the best things to do, places to eat, and get priceless advice from the people who live here.

Park
“When the weather is nice, you can barely see the grass due to the throngs of people lounging around. Luckily, the park was recently renovated and is big enough that you're bound to find a spot you like. The southwest corner is good for a panoramic view of the city skyline (and usually far enough away from the folks enjoying their herbal refreshments on the northern slope). There's also a nice kid's playground, although it's geared more towards older kids.”
792local recommendations
Park
“A million hiking trails, many options for various ability levels. Wonderful views of the Bay Area.”
178local recommendations
Art Museum
“The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art was the first museum in this part of the country to show only modern art. There are currently more than 29,000 pieces of work on display including paintings, sculptures, photographs and architecture”
315local recommendations
Bakery
$$
“Millennials love to stand in lines. Go mid-morning on weekdays to avoid long lines. But, the food is well worth it! Riches beyond your wildest dreams: butter-golden pains au chocolat, cappuccinos with ferns drawn in dense foam and croque monsieurs turbo-loaded with ham, two kinds of cheese and béchamel. Don't be dismayed by the inevitable line out the door – it moves fast – but be aware that lolling in Dolores Park is the only possible post-Tartine activity.”
503local recommendations
Museum
“Arts + History + Natural Sciences = 1 kick-ass museum. The OMCA is deeply rooted in the Oakland community offering a number of educational and outreach programs. On top of that, they throw a helluva party every Friday with drinks, food, dancing and half off entrance fees. Tip: Check out the notorious Black Panther leader Huey P. Newtons wicker chair in their gallery, originally proposed for the Alameda Courthouse. You can sit in it, too; contemplate the movement and its complicated founder.”
293local recommendations
Park
“Lake Merritt is known as the jewel of Oakland. Want to feel the vibe of Oakland? Hit up the Grand Lake Farmers market and hang by the lake on a Sunday afternoon. You'll see a real mix of Oaklanders, from joggers, bikers, picnickers, paddle boaters and the brunch crowd soaking up the sun. Tip: Gondola Servicio offers romantic rides on Lake Merritt aboard authentic gondolas from Venice, complete with Italian serenade. So, skip the cheesy Vegas stuff!”
420local recommendations
Neighbourhood
“Constantly bustling -- people use the square mostly as a space to relax and soak up a bit of sun, and to wallow in the atmosphere created by the surrounding cable cars, hotels and shoppers. Great for people watching! There is free wi-fi provided by the city. Look under the leaves of the greenery in the planters, and you'll find a few power outlets for your laptop.”
351local recommendations
Farmers Market
$$
“Market inside Ferry Building with a diverse selection of famous SF eateries: Hog Island Oyster Co, Acme Bread, Cowgirl Creamery, Blue Bottle, Miette and more.”
472local recommendations
Park
“Tilden Park, one of East Bay Regional Park District's 3 oldest parks, offers more than 2,000 acres for outdoor adventure. Activities include a Botanic Garden, Environmental Center, Merry-Go-Round, Steam Train, Lake Anza and Tilden Park Golf Course. Entrances are off Wildcat Canyon Rd. and Grizzly Peak Blvd.”
266local recommendations
Baseball Stadium
“Now known as Oracle Park and home to the San Francisco Giants. If you cannot make a game, check out the stadium tour and grab lunch and a brew at the Public House after. Right on the Muni Metro Line.”
278local recommendations
Historic Site
“A fascinating site, with much history. Be sure to rent the audio as the sound track & inmate interviews make this place come alive. Its a nice ferry ride to the island, offering great views of the City. During peak summer months, recommend securing tickets well in advance at they sell out week(s) in advance. ”
205local recommendations
Movie Theatre
“Step into this piece of history and see the latest films in ornate auditoriums. You can easily find it by its large, animated light displays: fireworks on the roof and a waterfall of fire over the marquee. Although movies are shown with the latest projectors and sound systems, this historic landmark opened in 1926 showing vaudeville and silent films, and is considered one of the top ten vintage theaters in the United States. Today, you can still catch a matinee for $6!”
241local recommendations
University
“Hit up Cal with all it's food, music, and college to get the full experience!”
220local recommendations
Neighbourhood
“The Wharf is "touristy" admittedly but most 1st timers to SF like to visit here. The Boudin sour dough bread factory here, as well as restaurant (try the clam chowder in sour dough bread bowls) but fav thing to do is grab some fresh crab cups or sandwiches from the street stands (from some of the original fish companies.) Check out the several original fish restaurants (Scomas, Alitos, Franciscan) for some great seafood and a bit of history! Reservations are a must during the busy season for sure! If at the Wharf, walk to Ghiradelli Square for some chocolate (fav is a Hot Fudge Sunday with of course Ghiradelli chocolate fudge sauce!) For an additional activity, rent bikes at the Wharf and bike to/cross the Golden Gate Bridge.”
266local recommendations
Science Museum
“A fun spot in the city with fun "science experiments" and games... A must do experience, especially for kids! ”
235local recommendations
Cheese Shop
$
“The best Vegetarian Pizza in the world. Make sure to get the green sauce an absolute must visit. This is a Berkeley specialty ”
204local recommendations