Local Favorites

With its stellar collection of attractions, parks, restaurants, and cultural venues, Berkeley has more (way more) exciting diversions than most visitors have room for on their itinerary.  To help you plan your visit, we’ve asked Berkeley locals and visitors to share their “insider” advice and hometown travel tips.

Click here to share your own "local favorite" tip. 


Of all the great things that the Berkeley Ecology Center does, including curbside recycling and the three Berkeley Farmers' Markets, maybe my favorite is the Ecology Center Store on San Pablo Avenue. It's my go-to place for gifts for family and friends, they have a great collection of everyday eco-merchandise including apparel, toys, gifts, and books.  —Jen K., El Cerrito

Tilden Park

Tilden Park has it all — golf course, a historic carousel for the kids, picnic areas, trails and hikes. Tilden’s Bay Area Ridge Trail rewards you with spectacular view. The park is also very serene and peaceful, a great escape. —James L, Berkeley

La Note

A little piece of France in Berkeley.  Located right in the heart of downtown, La Note is a super place for breakfast or brunch. Their outdoor courtyard is nice, sometimes there can be a wait on the weekend but it is worth it! —Robert H, Albany

adventure playground

A Berkeley under-the-radar gem for family play.  Kids can build (and build confidence) with saw, hammer and nail, paint, climb on creative play structures made from reclaimed wood and salvaged boats and construction materials, and top it off with a 50-foot zip line ride.  And it's all free.  Thank you Berkeley. — Jonathan F., Pinole
Adventure Playground

Saul’s Restaurant & Deli

As a native NYer living in the Bay Area for almost 20 years I have to say that Saul’s is just as good as what I had growing up. I’ll even say I think it’s better! Saul’s cares about the ingredients they cook with and the meat they serve. More pastrami piled high isn’t better, but organic meat and Acme rye sure is! —Lisa R, San Francisco

Raw Energy Organic Juice Cafe

They make the most delicious organic tomato soup and tofu sandwiches. Their smoothies are incredible as well... I would have to say... the best in Berkeley! —Tracy D, Berkeley

Chocolatier Blue

One bite sends me straight to heaven! They make all their chocolates from scratch. The Passion Fruit Caramel is my personal favorite, but I've tried most of them and they are all incredible. —Yoshiko O, Berkeley

Golden Gate Fields

It’s a trip on racing day. The collection of different types of folks makes it great for people watching, also watching the horses run around the track is fun and a nice way to see beautiful creatures up close. Kids love horses and Golden Gate Fields is very accommodating for families. Admission fees are very reasonable. It’s something totally different from what one would think of in Berkeley. —Christian P, Piedmont

Cheese board collective

Love cheese and/or pizza? The Cheese Board Collective has a very large selection and gives tastes to help you choose. Folks form a quickly moving line each day that the pizza is baked.  –Suzanne S, Berkeley

super 8 berkeley

My experience at the Super 8 Berkeley was the best.  The staff gave me great service and all the amenities, and the price is reasonable!  The breakfast, flat screen TVs, beds and overall experience are outstanding.  This is a three-star hotel that should be considered a four-star -- I will be coming back.  – David J, Maples, FL

angeline's louisiana kitchen

I love, love, love this restaurant.  I love the feel of the place, the food is outstanding, the decor is mindblowing, and the service is great.  When I'm here, I feel like I am in Louisiana, because the food is made from the heart.  My favorite place to eat in Berkeley.  —Tony A, Berkeley


This shop is a hidden gem filled with lots of unique hats and clothing!  The owner is a cute Japanese lady who makes all of her items in the store.  The first time I walked in, she spent time to find the perfect casual hat for me.  When I needed a fancier hat for a summer wedding, I visited again and found a beautiful one!  Her hats are just so lovely and I feel great wearing them! – Rahnel C, Albany

friends of the berkeley public library bookstore

The best used bookstore I have ever been to.  And I am almost 70 and have relished used bookstores since living in Berkeley in the '60s.  The store has $1 an hour parking in the same building, is beautifully organized, has helpful lovely volunteers who share my pleasure in my finds, and has plenty of light.  But the very best of all was such deliciously low prices... prices that make it close to dangerous (to shop here). — A World Traveler and Clay Artist

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