Fact Sheet


Set on sparkling San Francisco Bay, Berkeley is a small city with an international reputation. A culinary hub, socially diverse and culturally progressive, Berkeley offers a vibrant mix of neighborhoods, hotels, shops, restaurants, entertainment and recreational pursuits. Home to the University of California, Berkeley (first and founding campus in the University of California system), Tilden Regional Park, a marina-side park with San Francisco vistas and bay front trails, and the roots of American counter-culture, Berkeley is a destination of rich context and deep authenticity.


See http://www.VisitBerkeley.com, the city’s official travel website, for updated Berkeley travel information, maps, weather, special deals, hotel and dining listings and calendar of events. A downloadable, digital visitors guide is also available in eight languages and free of charge.

Location, Size and Population

Berkeley is located in the heart of the San Francisco Bay Area, approximately 10 miles east of San Francisco in Alameda County. The total land area of Berkeley is 10.5 square miles with another 7.2 aquatic square miles. The city population is 121,240 (U.S. Census estimate, 2016).


Berkeley's temperate climate makes it a true year-round destination. Sunshine is plentiful and temperatures generally stay between 50 and 75 degrees F. The autumn and spring seasons are when the city typically enjoys its most spectacular weather. Average rainfall is low and occurs primarily between December and March.


A regional transportation hub, Berkeley is a 15- to 30-minute (depending on traffic) drive from downtown San Francisco via freeway; Berkeley borders the city of Oakland and is about 1.5 hours north of San Jose by car. Oakland International Airport is the closest airport to Berkeley, approximately 14 miles away. San Francisco International and San Jose International airports also serve Berkeley. Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) trains serve three stations within Berkeley; BART trains run from Berkeley to Oakland International and San Francisco International airports with seamless, one-ticket connections. Scheduled Amtrak and bus services are also available for travel to, from and within Berkeley, the greater San Francisco Bay Area, and points beyond.


There are more than 1,400 hotel, motel and bed & breakfast accommodations in Berkeley. The range of properties and room types is comprehensive, offering a room to suit every taste and budget. Meetings and small conferences are a Berkeley specialty, thanks to the city’s history of free speech advocacy and reputation of thought leadership.


The shops of Berkeley range from international brands to independent boutiques, with a focus on locally owned businesses and artisans. Shopping in Berkeley is a wonderful way to explore the city’s eclectic neighborhoods, with retail options representing cultures and commodities from all over the world.


A focal point for the genesis of California Cuisine, Berkeley offers innovative and satisfying dining options covering a wide range of culinary tastes. The quantity and quality of the city's restaurants are exemplary. A staple of the Berkeley culinary scene is its collection of local, sustainable, fresh and organic food, and farmers’ markets offering flavorful fruits and vegetables.

Cultural Arts

Berkeley's thriving cultural scene is home to hundreds of arts organizations, artists and performers. In Berkeley, the arts hold equal pride of place with the city’s international reputation as a center for culinary and educational excellence. Creative spirit infuses Berkeley with everyday discoveries ranging from vibrant street art and public galleries, to major art presenters including the Berkeley Art Museum & Pacific Film Archive and Berkeley Repertory Theatre.

Visit Berkeley Information Center

Visit Berkeley operates a full-service Visitor Information Center, one block northwest of the Downtown Berkeley BART station. Brochures, literature, maps, visitor guides and information are here:

Visit Berkeley
2030 Addison Street, Suite 102
Berkeley, CA 94704
Tel: (510) 549-7040