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What about Oaktown

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san mateo CA
posts: 421
reviews: 23
What about Oaktown

I know several hotels in downtown Oakland close to BART (absent another strike) and therefore the City. The Oakland Museum of California is excellent. There are multiple excellent places to dine. There is for most of the hotels downtown proximity to Oakland's Chinatown and its does have its merits being less touristy than San Francisco's. But few on the California forum suggest it to budget travelers.

Maybe Rockridge rather than downtown for those who are not prepared for an inner city experience, also close to BART, and also full of interesting things to do and also excellent dining places.

I think we do a disservice to travelers when we neglect those parts of the Bay Area which have merit, not just San Francisco. I have been troubled here before when people have been snide about staying outside the City when it is not known why the traveler might be doing that.

Sorry but I would not suggest that a traveler stay in San Jose. It is a bit to sprawled for my taste, but that is different.

Fremont, California
Destination Expert
for San Francisco
posts: 16,121
reviews: 2,697
1. Re: What about Oaktown

What is your point?

San Jose has a lot more to offer than downtown Oakland; and by the way the 49ers play in Santa Clara (right next door to San Jose) at a stellar stadium unlike Oakland's.

So yeah - if you are a tourist in Oakland - figure out first what you want to do in downtown Oakland. There is not much to do there. The Oakland A and raider stadium is in a not so good area - and the motels there look like they have had better days long ago. it is very easy to take bart from San francsico to the Oakland Colisuem station barring a bart strike. There are some nice places closer to the Oakland hills and Jack London Square area has some ok restaurants. However, they are not tourist destinations -ask yourself: would you plan a vacation to San Francisco or a vacation to Oakland if you live on the East Coast? and the answer is: San francisco 99 per cent of the time.

but if you want to write such a post, it would be better to write a traveler article....

and then stick to what is good about Oakland and why a tourist would want to go to Oakland.

it is NOT a convenient place to stay for San Francisco and you should stay in San Francisco if you are visiting San Francisco.

Edited: 6:41 pm, July 11, 2013
Fremont, California
Destination Expert
for San Francisco
posts: 16,121
reviews: 2,697
2. Re: What about Oaktown

Note i meant to say as of 2014 the 49ers will be playing in Santa clara - the stadium looks stellar and is under construction.

San Francisco...
Destination Expert
for San Francisco
posts: 27,439
reviews: 132
3. Re: What about Oaktown

The PP is on fire and for the first time on TA I agree with her. Amazing.

We look forward to your suggestions for your fav hotels the next time some one posts. JAH.

Edited: 7:03 pm, July 11, 2013
san mateo CA
posts: 421
reviews: 23
4. Re: What about Oaktown

Sorry about the dissing of San Jose. I have had several recent visits there for a not pleasant reason and I found the sprawl somewhat disheartening. I know that some must enjoy the area, I can not.

I will still contend that Oakland has its merits. No one has denied that the California Museum does not consistently have excellent displays. Or maybe no one here has ever gone there. I find it more interesting than the De Young.

I would also suggest that a visit to 4th St. in Berkeley can be most pleasant. Or a walk along College from Broadway to say Ashby.

I will not look up all the mostly OK hotels in downtown Oakland near either the 12th or 19th St. BART stations but there are several. I will admit that the number of hotel/motels near the Rockridge BART are limited but do any want to suggest it is not a pleasant area.

I stand by my original idea that the Bay Area is more than San Francisco. I also stand by the idea that there are possibilities outside of San Francisco that can be both pleasant for the traveler and perhaps less expensive.

San Francisco
Destination Expert
for Borrego Springs, San Francisco, Solana Beach
posts: 32,165
reviews: 26
5. Re: What about Oaktown

I'm not going to comment on the whole issue of Oakland because I really don't know it. And what I read in the paper (granted SF centric) makes me look a little askance at finding out.

I will comment on this:

"No one has denied that the California Museum does not consistently have excellent displays. Or maybe no one here has ever gone there. I find it more interesting than the De Young."

Frankly, this is a ridiculous statement. Trying to compare the Oakland Museum of California with the de Young is like comparing ... oh, I don't know, clothes and food. Which do you prefer? These two museums have very little, if anything, in common. So if YOU find one more interesting than another then that is merely a personal preference. Because the collections of the two museums can, in no way, be compared.

Now, if someone wants to say that the Met is more interesting than the de Young, yep, I agree wholeheartedly. Or that the de Young (and don't forget the Legion, they are the same institution) is more interesting than the San Diego Museum of Art ... again, I concur.

But let's keep our oranges and apples in their rightful barrels.

san mateo CA
posts: 421
reviews: 23
6. Re: What about Oaktown

RamblinSal, you are correct I was comparing apples to oranges, I will apologize. I do find the California Museum more interesting but as you correctly point out that is a matter of taste not a matter of quality.

I have had trouble here before with stating what I believe are honest opinions on the advice we give to travelers. I have lived in Oakland for about 10 of my 66 years and my two children and their partners and two grandchildren live there now. My brother (a California native) stays there when he visits. I have fond memories of my time there and I think it gets bad press. That is not however my point.

My point remains that much of the greater Bay Area is quite interesting not simply San Francisco. I think those of us who live here should promote the greater Bay Area not just that which is available in the City. I do not find that a difficult position.

By the greater Bay Area I do not mean just the wine country or Muir Beach.

Berkeley, California
Destination Expert
for Berkeley
posts: 5,674
reviews: 69
7. Re: What about Oaktown

Any good travel guide of the Bay Area includes a chapter on the East Bay (well, Oakland and Berkeley specifically). There is certainly enough to do here to warrant a visit if a tourist is in San Francisco for more than 4 days, but I think it is fair to say that West Marin and Wine Country deserve a day trip prior to the East Bay. The East Bay is a fabulous place to live and socialize; the East Bay doesn't depend upon tourism nearly as much as our foggy western neighbor.

With regard to San Jose, I very much believe that Oakland is far more interesting to visit or live. I spent 2 years in San Jose and still visit occasionally, and I see no reason why anyone would go there as a tourist. San Francisco, Santa Cruz, Monterey, and even Oakland are far more interesting to even the most casual tourist.

Santa Clara...
posts: 8,689
reviews: 17
8. Re: What about Oaktown

Oh are we really going to go there?? Sure SF has many great spots for tourists and should be the main spot for first time visitors on a limited time schedule. But you really aren't going to suffer or get shot up visiting the East or South Bay. I make my way all around the Bay so I can say with confidence that we have interesting things going on everywhere if you seek it out.

How can anyone say anything bad about a city that hosts a Internet Cat Video Fest? http://www.oaklandcatvidfest.com/

Edited: 5:38 pm, July 12, 2013
9. Re: What about Oaktown

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