A recent trip to Jack London Square made me aware of the amazing variety of things for a family to see and do there. While you can go any day, planning your trip to coincide with some of the scheduled events there make things so much more fun for you and your children. It is located at the foot of Broadway in Oakland, where Broadway meets the Oakland Estuary. On the Estuary you will see boats of every size and description from the huge container ships loading their cargo, to the yachts in the adjacent harbor, to the little kyacks in the water trying to avoid them all. If you are looking for adventure on the water, the San Francisco Bay Ferry docks there, and leaves for San Francisco on a regular basis. From there you can go to the Ferry Building, Larkspur, Sausalito, Alcatraz, or take a tour around the SF Bay, depending on your family’s mood and schedule.

What starts as a Farmer’s Market on the first Sunday of every month becomes a source for stalls and tents containing all kinds of fruits and vegetables, cooked pastas, sweet things, cooking demonstrations, scheduled children’s activities, stage shows and even free yoga lessons. There is something there to interest every member of your group. The best part is that you can decide just how much to spend, since the entrance is free. You might choose an interesting way to arrive there. There are shuttle buses from BART, ferry boats, a nearby Amtrak, and a large public parking garage nearby. Schedules and details are all available on the Jack London Square main website, which boasts that the New York Times named Oakland and the Square as one of the top 45 places to go in 2012. When you are done, take a walk along the waterfront, and see how many different kinds of sailboats you can count, or speedboats zipping by. There are nearby restaurants of every size and shape in case you get hungry. You can do all this in one day, and not have to travel out of the city. Not many places can say that. Enjoy.

Posted by Bruce Wagg on


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