LAKE MERRITT

If you want the live in the heart of Oakland, you cannot beat Lake Merritt.

The lake is a beautiful setting for a myriad of activities. Its recent renovation has brought the community together and is a hub for outdoor gatherings. Many visitors take advantage of Oakland’s sunny weather and calm waters by rowing with their crew teams or relaxing on a rented sailboat. While walking around the 3 mile loop of Lake Merritt, it is not uncommon to observe people practicing Yoga, Tai Chi, picnicking, running, walking on stilts, Capoeira, or playing any number of instruments. There are also plenty of places for small children to play, including Fairyland, a theme park, and picnic spots for barbequing. This neighborhood is a true reflection of the diversity and culture that makes Oakland so special.

People from all over Oakland, and beyond, come to Lake Merritt to relax outside or to enjoy the food and drinks at Lake Chalet—a popular restaurant at the edge of the lake. Living near Lake Merritt means living at the epicenter of activity, yet still being close to an abundance of nature. Unlike the center of most cities, Lake Merritt is home to exotic wildlife. It is not uncommon to see snowy egrets, buffleheads, great blue herons, back-crowned night herons, or Canadian geese. In fact, the lake was America’s first wildlife sanctuary, in 1869. Most of the plants around the lake are unique and originate from various regions around the world.

Oakland’s crown jewel is surrounded by a necklace of lights, which provides a romantic backdrop when walking at dusk or for those looking down from their home. There are modern condos and high rise apartment buildings that flank Lake Merritt, as well as smaller multi unit residences. The public schools in the area include, La Escuelita Elementary School, Westlake Middle School and Oakland High School.