Founded in 1852, the city of Oakland is heavily influenced by industrial traditions and represents the culture of the American working class.
Who doesn’t know the song ” Sitting on the dock of the bay “From Otis Redding? If there is someone, please go to youtube quickly and have a listen. With “the bay” is meant the San Francisco Bay, which is now framed by several important cities. Together, Oakland, San Jose, Berkeley and, of course, San Francisco itself form a metropolitan region that is a huge economic power in California. Oakland can be seen to this day.
The city, which was only founded in 1852, is still strongly characterized by industrial traditions to this day. This can be seen on the one hand in the buildings, but it is also evident in the population. It is made up of many ethnic minorities whose ancestors moved here for one reason only: They were looking for work, and Oakland had plenty of that to offer. So if you are in San Francisco Bay anyway, you should head to Oakland and immerse yourself in the everyday life and culture of the American working class.
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The night is not just for sleeping
Of course, Oakland doesn’t live on the past alone. In the present, the city has made a name for itself for its interesting nightlife. Most of this takes place in Jack London Square, which is full of bars, cinemas, restaurants and music clubs. Every style has its home here, and you are always welcome to dance. No wonder that quite a number of famous American musicians come from Oakland. There is already something going on here during the day, but the area only develops its true flair after dark. As a tourist, should you mingle with the people alone? In principle, this is entirely possible, but unfortunately one of the downsides of Oakland is the high crime rate. While most violent crimes stem from disputes between residents, but caution should always be required. In a group you are therefore definitely safer and alcohol consumption should also be kept under control.
But you can visit large urban cultural institutions without any worries. One of the highlights is the “Paramount Theater” (2025 Broadway). Whether symphony concerts or ballet, classic films or stand-up comedy – every art form has its place here and finds its big stage in Paramount. The performances are very popular and often sold out. It is worth booking tickets before you start your journey. Once the Paramount was just a cinema palace that could hold 3,000 visitors. From the good, old luxury times, the sanitary facilities have been preserved. The toilets themselves have now been modernized, but the wall decorations still shine in their original, lush beauty. Please don’t miss it!
Attention, work is underway here
The cityscape is characterized by some beautiful Art Deco buildings, which were built here in the first half of the last century, mainly by large companies and which herald the city’s economic rise. How hard work is still going on here today can be seen in the huge harbor and at Oakland International Airport. The airport handles almost all cargo flights for the greater San Francisco area from; the port is one of the 20 largest transshipment facilities in the world. Space also has its place in Oakland and underlines that this city still stands for economic success and immense efforts. The Chabot Center for Space and Science (1000 Skyline Blvd) is 80,000 square meters and is located in a five-acre park. Here you can not only experience Mars robots, but also observe thousands of stars through a huge telescope. If you are traveling with children, you should take the little ones with you on this excursion. You will be amazed at least as much here as the big ones.
Beautiful villa with a sad history
A real insider tip is the Dunsmuir property 2960 Peralta Oaks). For that alone, it’s worth coming over to Oakland from San Francisco. Alexander Dunsmuir had the magnificent property with the sad background built in 1899 and wanted to give it to his wife Josephine for their wedding. However, on his honeymoon in New York he became very ill and died. So the property fell into strange hands and was finally built in 1960 by the City of Oakland. The villa covers 15,000 square meters on three floors, where readings, concerts and other cultural events take place today. The house itself, the park and the driveway are also a real sight in themselves. The park, for example, was created by John McLaren, who is also responsible for the Golden Gate Park in San Francisco.