Destination guide

Enjoy a vibrant and offbeat vibe in Berkeley

A quintessential college town on San Francisco Bay, Berkeley has long been celebrated as the birthplace of free speech. The modern Berkeley is perhaps better associated with artistic flair and culinary bounty, although there’s still a whiff of hippie idealism in the air. Stay close to the action with a Berkeley vacation rental near the park-like campus of the University of California, Berkeley or enjoy the seclusion of a home in the forested foothill range, many of which combine classic craftsman design with modern comforts and sumptuous views of the bay.

Things to do

A culture fix in California

Getting your culture on is almost obligatory in this neck of the woods. Noteworthy stops for your bucket list include the Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, where bold avant-garde art is put on show in suitably sleek and contemporary surroundings. A family-friendly option is to visit Lawrence Hall of Science, where hands-on exhibits will keep kids entertained while also expanding their minds. Before returning to your Berkeley vacation rental, round off your culture fix with a trip to the 8,500-seat William Randolph Hearst Greek Theater, an outdoor amphitheater where previous headliners have included everyone from Elvis to the Dalai Lama.

Activities

Live the good life in Berkeley

The foodie scene in Berkeley rivals any found in the Bay Area, although you’ll likely find the prices a little lower and a greater focus on ethnic cuisine, particularly in the tantalizing Telegraph Avenue area. As you might expect, student hangouts and hip coffee shops offering relaxed dining are prevalent here, but if you want an authentic Bay Area dining experience, farm-to-table restaurants are also on the menu. If retail therapy is on your agenda, you can combine shopping with sightseeing as you search for flash new wardrobe additions at the local favorite, College Avenue, and the more upscale Fourth Street.

Weather

Summer days in Berkeley

If you’re set on exploring UC Berkeley itself, then you should swing by this city in April when the university holds its annual Cal Day, with street performances, public lectures, and archeological exhibits a-plenty. If enjoying sunny days is more important, anytime between May to mid-October should fit the bill. That said, unpredictable summer weather leads many people to travel in July and August, when prices for Berkeley vacation rentals can be higher but the chance of rain is minimal. Winter can let you take advantage of lower rates, but it can get pretty wet around here.

Natural features

Discover Berkeley’s ancient volcano

While Golden Gate Park may be synonymous with the Bay Area, Berkeley is by no means a runner-up when it comes to lush green spaces. Tilden Regional Park, stretching along the city’s northeast border, offers the chance to hike, swim, or simply relax and admire the sunset over San Francisco Bay. You can also get back to nature at the nearby Sibley Volcanic Regional Preserve, where places to wander include the 31-mile East Bay Skyline Recreation Trail. If that sounds too strenuous, a much shorter volcanic trail that leads gently to the top of Round Top, one of the area’s highest peaks, is a less challenging alternative.

How to get there

Transportation to and around Berkeley

The nearest airport is in Oakland, CA (OAK-Oakland Intl.), located 11.3 mi (18.2 km) from the city center. If you're unable to find a flight that fits your schedule, you might consider flying into Concord, CA (CCR-Buchanan Field), which is 14 mi (22.5 km) away.

If you're traveling by train, you can make your way to Berkeley Station. Consider catching the metro at North Berkeley Station or Ashby Station to see more of the city.

Where to stay around Berkeley?

Our 2019 property listings offer a large selection of 1,639 vacation rentals near Berkeley. From 551 Houses to 827 Condos/Apartments, find a unique house rental for you to enjoy a memorable stay with your family and friends. The best places to stay near Berkeley for a holiday or a weekend are on HomeAway.

What is the best area to stay when traveling to Berkeley?

Whether you're traveling with family or friends, here are the areas with the largest selection of vacation rentals for a holiday trip or just for a weekend in Berkeley:

  • Berkeley Hills: 171 vacation rentals
  • North Berkeley: 136 vacation rentals
  • Thousand Oaks: 170 vacation rentals
  • Elmwood: 54 vacation rentals
  • South Berkeley: 93 vacation rentals

For other neighborhoods, please use our search bar to access the selection of vacation rentals available.

What are the popular points of interest near where I can stay when traveling to Berkeley?

HomeAway offers a large selection of vacation rentals near lovely places in Berkeley. From HomeAway travelers, the most popular points of interest to stay for a holiday trip or just for a weekend are:

  • University of California, Berkeley: 2,078 vacation rentals
  • Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive: 2,082 vacation rentals
  • Greek Theater: 2,074 vacation rentals
  • Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory: 2,064 vacation rentals
  • Adventure Playground: 2,206 vacation rentals

But there are many other points of interest around Berkeley listed on HomeAway where you can find your place to stay. Please use our search bar to access the selection of vacation rentals available near the point of interest of your choice.

Can I rent Houses in Berkeley?

Yes, of course. HomeAway has 551 Houses in Berkeley. Our other popular types of vacation rentals in Berkeley include:

  • Condos/Apartments: 827 rentals available
  • Cottages: 49 rentals available
  • Bungalows: 49 rentals available

But you can also enjoy a great stay in one of our other vacation rentals including Studios and more.

Can I find a vacation rental with pool in Berkeley?

Yes, you can select your preferred vacation rental with pool among our 159 vacation rentals with pool available in Berkeley. Please use our search bar to access the selection of vacation rentals available.

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