Lake Temescal

Because of its location next to the junction of highways 24 and 13 in Oakland it is easy to race by the Lake Temescal area without ever realizing its there. Those that are in the know, however, have made the lake one of Oakland's most-popular spots for hiking, fishing, biking, and swimming. The lake also features a large beach house that can be rented out for events.

Parking and public transportation at Lake Temescal
Parking is available at both the north and south ends of the park. The north lot is much larger than the south lot. There are multiple bus stops in the area, with the stop at the corner of Broadway Terrace and Pinewood Road being the closest.

Best and worst time to go to Lake Temescal
Oakland is known for having some of the best weather in the nation, so there's never really a bad time to go to the lake, even in the cooler months of winter, although swimming isn't allowed November through March.

Admission to Lake Temescal
There are no admission fees to get into the park, but parking is $5 for cars and $4 for trailers. If you bring your dog there is a $2 fee. Access to the beach area costs $3 for people aged 16-61 and $2 for kids aged 1-15, senior citizens over the age of 62, and disabled visitors. A daily fishing permit costs $5.

Must see/do at Lake Temescal
Fishing is one of the main draws as the lake is well-stocked with a variety of fish year-round such as rainbow trout, large mouth bass, and catfish, among others. The types of fish in the lake are changed with the seasons. Hiking the paved trail that runs the length of the park is a favorite activity of visitors and is wheelchair accessible.

Other places to visit near Lake Temescal
If you're feeling adventurous and want to take in one of the best views in the Bay Area, head up to Grizzly Peak Boulevard near the Caldecott Tunnel for a stunning view of Oakland, San Francisco, and beyond. Just be sure the sky is clear, or your view will be blocked by the infamous bay fog.

Insider tip for visitors to Lake Temescal
If you don't want to pay the parking fees and don't mind getting some exercise there is plenty of parking available on the surrounding streets.

Author's bio: Dennis Biles is a freelance journalist who was born and raised in the Bay Area. When he's not writing he can often be found losing his mind at Oakland A's games in the Right Field Bleachers.