When it comes to finding the best views in Oakland and the East Bay, I do have an advantage over others.
Here are a few of my favorite views with the exact locations and photos I have taken from these views in the East Bay and Oakland.
Growing up in Oakland and having awesome parents that would take me places, I’ve always been privy to some amazing views of our beloved geographic paradise.
Oakland is a geographical diamond in the beautiful state of California, meaning we have a few really easy to access locations right here in Oakland.
And if you have a full day you can drive to Yosemite!
Oakland Skyline Mountain View Cemetery
Exact Location – Top of Mountain View Cemetary. Oakland, CA
The beautiful Oakland Skyline. (click photo to enlarge)
I decided to show you Mountain View Cemetery first because it is actually very easy to get to. Hell, you could even take the bus there if you wanted. With little effort, you can find yourself atop a nice hill right at the foot of the Oakland Hills looking towards downtown Oakland. A great view. It’s actually where I took this panoramic photo.
Some people call it Piedmont Cemetery because it is located at the very end of Piedmont Ave(which is still Oakland).
Some call it the Chapel Of Chimes because of the Chapel on Piedmont Ave. But it is actually the Mountain View Cemetery and I suggest you go for an early morning tour or walk for the best clearest viewing. Depending on the time of year you can catch a sunset here as well.
Mountain View Piedmont Hours:
6:30am – 7:00pm daily
Port of Oakland Middle Harbor Shoreline Park
Exact Location – Pier at the end of Middle Harbor Park
The Middle Harbor Shoreline Park located at the Port Of Oakland is one of my favorite places to hang out on the water for a sunset in the Bay Area. Possibly the best waterfront sunset location in the Bay. Please comment below with your favorites.
Looking out from the Port, past the cranes you can see the San Francisco skyline beyond the Bay Bridge. But the real secret here is if you go across to Port View Park and find the little fence and trail, you can walk all the way down and end up on a pier. I believe this to be the closest you can get to the Bay Bridge from Oakland(besides the new span path).
San Francisco Views from Port of Oakland
Taken from Port View Park, Oakland California and looking out towards the SF skyline beyond the Bay Bridge. You can even see the Golden Gate in the far background of this sunset. In the foreground are barges used for the Port of Oakland dredging project in this area.
This beautiful sunset over Frisco is taken from the point of Middle Harbor Park out past the structure. It almost looks like the end of the world.
Ok, one last shot from Middle Harbor Park. I do believe this to be one of the best sunset spots in the Bay Area. It’s a great spot to relax, watch the sun drop behind the San Francisco skyline and it’s close to home.
Oakland Hills Views – Grizzly Peak
Exact Location – Grizzly Peak Turn Out, Oakland Hills
For the actual best view in the San Francisco Bay Area, you should head up in the Berkeley Hills to Grizzly Peak. There are actually a lot of places to stop on the side of the road up here but I do have a few favorites to share with you.
If you go up ole Fish Ranch Rd you can explore the various pullouts and find your favorite but I suggest the parking lot we linked in Google Maps. There is a spot around the bend from here with a tree you can kind of sit on. It’s usually less crowded because you can’t really tell it’s there. On the map it’s the next spot to the left with the big tree.
You do have to worry about the East Bay Park Rangers at Grizzly Peak here. I think they sweep and kick you out at 10pm but that’s plenty of time to catch a sunset and enjoy the night.
San Leandro Marina
Exact Location – Parking Lot at the end of San Leandro Marina
The San Leandro Marina is a quick easy spot located right off of 880 at Marina. The cool thing about this location is that the Oakland Airport planes fly really low and land in front of you on the runway.
It’s a real nice easy populated chill spot for a sunset or mid day break. To get the best out of this view you have to drive all the way to the end parking lot.
Lake Merritt History – Anywhere at Lake Merritt in Oakland, CA
Then there is the obvious view just hanging out anywhere on Lake Merritt. I shouldn’t even have to mention this one but I just wanted to get my photos of Lake Merritt views in there.
Butters Mormon Temple View
Exact Location – Butters Overlook, Oakland Hills, CA
This secret hill that we call Butters is located behind the Mormon Temple in the Oakland Hills off Joaquin Miller on Butters Dr. You park as soon as you turn right on Butters and walk up the steep hill in front of you. Once you make it to the top, you have one of the best possible views in East Oakland overlooking the Bay Area for sunset.
It’s a spot we used to go up to and drink at when we were younger. There is a fire station at the foot of the hill but as long as you’re quiet those guys won’t bother you.
East Oakland Hills, Knowland Park
Exact Location – Park in the neighborhood and walk in
Knowland Park, located behind the Oakland Zoo in the Oakland Hills actually still has large undeveloped land parcels that you can go out and walk about, lay in the grass, walk your dog, catch a sunset and more. However the Oakland Zoo plans to expand into this great wide open park and the Friends Of Knowland Park need your help.
San Francisco City Skyline View
And I’ll leave you guessing where I took this shot from. I thought it would be fun to edit an old San Francisco picture to end the article. And this fun Oakland Map you can buy.
Please comment below with your secret spots and best views in Oakland. Subscribe for future articles like this.
I hope you enjoyed these photos of the Oakland Skyline and share with your friends.
You can buy any of my Oakland Photos.