Video courtesy of Broken Dove Productions

Oakland is a quintessentially Northern California destination that knows how to make the most of its stunning topography and perfect year-round weather. And late summer/early fall is the perfect time to visit and take advantage of the city’s unique convergence of nature and culture. With a pastoral gem of a lake in the middle of the city, 100,000 acres of redwood parks boasting hundreds of trails, 19 miles of coastline and on-the-water activities, in Oakland you’re never far from an immersive world-class al fresco experience.

Oakland’s crown jewel of waterfront living is Lake Merritt, the gleaming urban lake with a beautiful 3-mile path surrounding the water, gondola rides for the romantic, kayaks for the active, and plenty of space for walkers, runners, and those who just want to sit and enjoy the view. Picking just which of the city’s several stunning sprawling parks—the arboreal wonderland of the Reinhardt Redwood Regional Park in the Oakland Hills? Joaquin Miller and its WPA Art Deco treasures?—to spend the afternoon is an adventure in and of itself. And you can literally stop and smell the roses at the serene hideaway that is Morcom Rose Garden, home to an impressive 6,000 rose bushes, which are in full bloom from now through October.

These are just a few of the dozens of outdoor activities Oakland has to offer this fall. To help you decide what to do and plan your visit, go to Visit Oakland’s excellent interactive guide to 60+ options that will be sure to satisfy any visitor that does outdoor living right.

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