If San Francisco is known for it’s glamorous google-glass wearing tech scene, then sitting six miles east, Oakland embodies its counterculture of distressed-jean hipsters thriving in an art and entertainment scene. The urban hotspot is made up of creative communities, with one of the highest concentration of artists per capita. Since rent is considerable cheaper here, young and emerging artists and entrepreneurs are responsible for some of the most original event spaces in the country. The following venues in Oakland represent independent businesses, community events, galleries, restaurants, retail shops and other institutions that give visitors and residents alike a taste of one of the most vibrant neighborhoods in the U.S.
Jack London Square
From the bustling Sunday farmer markets, and outdoor filmings, to kayaking and bicycling along the waterfront, the active energy at Jack London Square (JLS) makes it a travel destination for people all over the Bay Area and beyond. Located within the port of Oakland, along the scenic Oakland/Alameda natural estuary, JLS is home to quirky independent businesses like Plank, a funky restaurant with a patio beer garden of over 50 hand-crafted labels with 18 lanes of state-of-the-art bowling, interactive video games and bocce ball for entertainment. For a quicker bite, the square is usually crowded by a number of food vendors and food trucks to satiate diverse crowds. All in all JLS is a family-friendly outdoor hub of recreation in the heart of Oakland. There is always something to plan and enjoy.
Looking for a venue that will entertain you and make you sweat? With four full length regulation maple hardwood courts, Jamtown is the Bay Area’s premier basketball facility located in a easy-to-access city destination. Whether you’d like to schedule a pickup game with friends or head on down for an open shoot, three hours of ball time will only cost you eight dollars. The state-of-the-art facility is run by a dedicated staff, however, tournaments are often scheduled in advance, so go online or call to reserve your court ahead of time. Pick-up games and open shoot hours are limited to the slotted times at 12PM and 8PM Monday through Friday, and 9AM on Saturday and Sunday.
By Carly Salzberg
Volcanic Iceland Epic Trip
meet our Local Insider
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN A GUIDE?
WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT YOUR JOB?
It's the personal contact, the personal experiences. I love meeting people from all over the world... I really like getting to know everyone and feeling like I'm traveling with a group of friends.
WHAT DESTINATION IS ON YOUR TRAVEL BUCKET-LIST?
I have so many places on my list, but I would really lobe to go to Africa. I consider myself an “adventure girl” and Africa feels like the ULTIMATE adventure!
Every CULTURE TRIP Small-group adventure is led by a Local Insider just like Hanna.
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Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.