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Oakland is a fusion city in all respects, but nowhere is this more apparent than in its food scene. Look for “Off the Grid” Food Truck Rallies serving up diverse cuisines in short-form throughout the city, stop by one of several farmers markets, and definitely let your taste buds loose at a Michelin-starred restaurant in burgeoning Uptown. Head down the Oakland Urban Wine Trail to experience the city’s unique take on sipping vintages (and storing them – here the wineries are housed in warehouses). For a dose of California art and history, visit the Oakland Museum of California. Catch a performance at the Oakland Ballet or a turfing one (street-inspired dance) happening anywhere. For a fusion of music and art, check out the art cars that fill the Playa at Burning Man every year.

The fusion doesn’t stop there. Oakland’s Lake Merritt is a blend of fresh and salt-water. Walk or bike the 5.5-kilometer perimeter, dine along the waterfront, take a gondola ride, or immerse yourself in the glory that is GSBF Bonsai Garden. If you prefer to get lost in the forest, Redwood Regional Park, in the hills east of Oakland, is teeming with majestic, 46-meter high trees and offers some of the best views of the entire Bay Area.

Kids will be enchanted by Children’s Fairyland, an imaginative theme park. Nearby Oakland Zoo, operating since 1922, is small enough to do in a day and puts you right up close with the animals. Round out your visit by spending time at Jack London Square and Waterfront, situated on the Oakland/Alameda estuary and comprised of a cluster of restaurants and shopping fused with outdoor activities such as biking, kayaking and movies under the stars.

Fun Fact

A sculpture from the Black Panther exhibit at the Oakland Museum of California
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Oakland was the birthplace of the Black Panther movement.

Aerial view of Asheville, North Carolina
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