Berkeley summer picnic spots

Garden_OpalKlotz
Opal Klotz/File

As we enter into the heat of summer, chances are your summer funds are running a little low. Too many dinners out, some new tank top splurges and a couple weekend getaways can all lead you to being virtually broke. To save some money and transportation costs, why not take your meals somewhere fun? With the beautiful summer weather and so many places around here to explore, we at the Clog would like to invite you to grab a blanket, a basket and a bottle of rosé and have a picnic!

If you’re not too hesitant to make a climb, Indian Rock Park offers not only amazing views, but also a fun mini hike. There are steps carved into the rock so it isn’t particularly dangerous, however we still recommend bringing a buddy if you’re prone to falling. Also, picnics are much more fun when you have someone to share them with. Grab a pizza and enjoy a quintessential view of the entire Bay.

Looking for grassy fields and an opportunity to enjoy the best of Tilden Regional Park? Check out the Padre Picnic Area located right in the heart of the park. Perfect for a lunch picnic (be sure to get there before 4:00 p.m., the area closes at 4:30 p.m.), this area has tables and benches and an open field so you can choose whether or not you actually feel like sitting on the ratty blanket you brought. An additional bonus is the fact that you’re already in Tilden Park, which has a beautiful lake, a carousel and a botanic garden.

Are you looking for a more romantic picnic spot? The Berkeley Rose Garden is not only one of the city’s best maintained gardens, but it also offers spectacular views of the Bay. A quiet and colorful spot, the gardens are also super close to Codornices Park, which offers additional field space for throwing around a ball and of course picnicking. We especially recommend this spot because of the fact that the roses are in full bloom over the summer, offering a beautiful setting for any evening sunset.

If you have a car or are willing to figure out all the ins and outs of AC Transit, check out César Chávez Park located at the Berkeley Marina. A popular spot for kite flying and dog walking, this spot also offers incredible views of the San Francisco skyline and the Golden Gate Bridge. Picnic along the water in the grass or walk along the paved trails and find the best view. Later in the summer, this park also hosts a Kite Festival (July 30 to 31), so be sure to keep this spot on your radar.

Are you a dog lover? Be sure to take your picnic to Willard Park, one of the few spots found in Southside. About 5:00 p.m. every weeknight, this park is a hotspot for local dog owners, so you’ll definitely get to hang with some cute pups as you picnic. This park also has a large play structure and some tennis courts if you’re interested in getting some exercise before eating.

Next time you think about heading over to Asian Ghetto, skip out on the tables, take your food to go and enjoy the great outdoors. While getting food on a budget and finding a place to eat that’s fun or date-worthy may be no picnic, we at the Clog hope you take these spots into consideration next time you’re in a pickle!

Contact Gillian Perry at [email protected].