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Living in Oakland

Oakland isn’t the Bay Area’s second city anymore. With its stunning location on the shores of Lake Merritt and proximity to Silicon Valley employers, it’s come into its own. The ethnically diverse population makes it a cultural playground for food, art, music, and more.

BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) and a well connected bus line make Oakland accessible from San Francisco, the East and South Bay. Want cred? The NRDC ranked Oakland as a sustainable city, recognizing Fruitvale as an icon of walkable and transit friendly living.

Nearby Apartments

Walk Score of Oakland, CA

Oakland is Very Walkable

Most errands can be accomplished on foot.

Walk Score Map

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Photo of Fox Theater in Oakland

Fox Theater

Photo of USS Potomac in Oakland

USS Potomac

Oakland is the 9th most walkable large city in the US with 390,724 residents.

Oakland has good public transportation and is somewhat bikeable.

Find apartments in Oakland's most walkable neighborhoods: Downtown, Koreatown-Northgate and Temescal.

Oakland Apartments for Rent

Oakland Neighborhoods

Rank

#

Name

Walk Score

Transit Score

Bike Score

Population

1 Downtown 97 84 84 16,449
2 Koreatown-Northgate 97 76 95 2,507
3 Temescal 92 68 95 4,271
4 Piedmont Avenue 92 55 81 8,635
5 Mosswood 92 72 96 2,301
6 Fruitvale Station 92 72 70 1,559
7 Saint Elizabeth 91 71 61 6,226
8 Pill Hill 91 70 93 1,745
9 Hawthorne 91 70 68 3,140
10 Shafter 91 64 90 3,433
11 Merritt 90 72 90 2,723
12 Fairview Park 89 64 97 3,927
13 Produce and Waterfront 89 79 84 2,561
14 Golden Gate 88 53 78 1,719
15 Bushrod 88 63 98 6,236
16 Lakeshore 87 48 61 3,641
17 Hoover-Foster 86 71 93 4,296
18 Laurel 86 50 58 1,544
19 Oak Tree 86 67 69 3,207
20 Adams Point 86 63 84 9,902
21 Oak Center 86 73 85 3,082
22 Rockridge 86 59 78 3,447
23 Santa Fe 85 61 96 3,463
24 East Peralta 85 62 83 3,043
25 Longfellow 85 71 91 5,855
26 Grand Lake 85 51 70 3,605
27 Acorn 85 73 86 1,268
28 Ralph Bunche 85 69 87 1,740
29 Gaskill 85 58 83 1,838
30 Harrison St-Oakland Ave 84 63 87 3,891
31 Acorn Industrial 84 71 88 1,338
32 Lower Dimond 84 54 58 1,762
33 Patten 83 57 51 2,772
34 McClymonds 83 63 90 2,888
35 Sausal Creek 82 58 53 2,366
36 Rancho San Antonio 82 55 73 5,495
37 Fremont 82 55 53 5,236
38 Paradise Park 82 55 84 2,594
39 Cleveland Heights 81 61 74 7,231
40 Melrose 81 52 54 1,479
41 Clawson 81 60 88 2,954
42 Cypress Village 80 66 94 741
43 Upper Dimond 79 53 54 3,562
44 Meadow Brook 78 59 58 5,816
45 Wentworth Holland 78 51 56 2,270
46 School 78 55 55 1,837
47 Havenscourt 78 58 62 5,909
48 Clinton 78 59 70 8,596
49 Jingletown 78 66 85 2,070
50 Peralta Hacienda 78 56 53 2,950
51 Allendale 77 49 56 4,872
52 Harrington 77 58 55 4,765
53 Hegenberger 77 60 61 2,421
54 Upper Laurel 76 49 50 5,234
55 Glenview 76 52 53 5,398
56 Frick 76 54 59 2,582
57 Eastmont 75 56 63 3,323
58 Tuxedo 75 56 60 1,725
59 Woodland 74 58 50 2,117
60 Arroyo Viejo 74 58 62 4,961
61 Durant Manor 73 53 60 1,247
62 Ivy Hill 73 59 63 3,927
63 Seminary 73 54 56 5,821
64 Trestle Glen 73 52 52 3,515
65 North Stonehurst 73 48 55 4,354
66 Jefferson 72 57 51 2,884
67 Highland 72 50 50 2,883
68 Bartlett 72 53 57 3,025
69 Fitchburg 71 67 53 2,668
70 Iveywood 71 53 61 3,535
71 Claremont Elmwood 70 10 51 15,299
72 South Prescott 70 65 89 1,399
73 Reservoir Hill 70 56 51 1,331
74 Highland Terrace 70 56 56 4,522
75 Highland Park 69 55 54 861
76 Fairfax 69 50 44 2,310
77 Lynn 69 54 64 1,207
78 Lockwood-Tevis 69 68 51 2,487
79 Prescott 69 61 88 4,251
80 Elmhurst Park 68 48 49 2,985
81 Cox 68 53 59 3,862
82 Webster 67 54 58 5,407
83 Las Palmas 67 52 60 1,914
84 Coliseum 67 73 54 3,251
85 Maxwell Park 65 50 42 5,706
86 Coliseum Industrial Complex 65 54 50 1,401
87 Crocker Highlands 64 46 36 2,369
88 Bella Vista 64 56 56 1,460
89 South Stonehurst 64 42 50 839
90 Castlemont 61 52 56 4,302
91 Foothill Square 61 49 43 1,196
92 Millsmont 58 51 34 5,112
93 Brookfield Village 58 39 48 4,045
94 Oakmore 55 44 33 3,674
95 Toler Heights 55 49 31 2,388
96 Sheffield 53 34 42 703
97 Mills College 50 47 37 730
98 Upper Rockridge 50 35 39 6,774
99 Redwood Heights 50 43 28 4,624
100 Columbia Gardens 49 40 53 1,237
101 Eastmont Hills 48 49 22 3,491
102 Montclair 47 30 33 4,873
103 Lincoln Highlands 43 43 28 2,283
104 Sobrante Park 41 39 43 3,136
105 Glen Highlands 38 21 23 1,357
106 Crestmont 27 33 10 1,065
107 Merriwood 27 20 17 3,996
108 Oak Knoll Golf Links 26 42 10 1,550
109 Woodminster 25 32 14 1,560
110 Leona Heights 25 39 12 901
111 Shepherd Canyon 17 6 21 1,330
112 Chabot Park 17 26 8 2,916
113 Sequoyah 17 18 11 4,315
114 Piedmont Pines 16 22 13 3,103
115 Caballo Hills 9 28 5 2,051
116 Forestland 8 2 14 1,484
117 Skyline-Hillcrest Estates 4 17 4 1,153

Eating & Drinking

There are about 1,591 restaurants, bars and coffee shops in Oakland.

People in Oakland can walk to an average of 2 restaurants, bars and coffee shops in 5 minutes.

Photo of Jack London Square in Oakland

Jack London Square

Photo of Telegraph Beer Garden in Oakland

Telegraph Beer Garden

Restaurant Choices Map

= More Choices

thumbnail for FairylandFairyland has been a wonderful resource to the family-based community for as long as I can remember. In a Storybook-esque environment, Fairyland offers its patrons a whimsical experience. Plus they have adult nights once a year opening the park up to a 21 and up audience with adult beverages!

Sean Delizo
on Fairyland

Transit Score of Oakland, CA

Oakland has Good Transit

Many nearby public transportation options. Find Oakland apartments for rent near public transit.

Public Transit Routes

Oakland has good public transportation and about 56 bus, 1 rail and 6 subway lines.

Transit Time

The map above shows how far you can travel in 30 minutes from Oakland on public transit.

icon for car shares in Oakland

Oakland has about 116 car shares from City CarShare, RelayRides, Zipcar and Getaround.

Neighborhood Guides

Thinking of renting an apartment or buying in Oakland? Ask our neighborhood guides a question.

Photo of 9th and Washington, Oakland, CA 94607 in Oakland

9th and Washington, Oakland, CA 94607

Photo of Preservation Park in Oakland

Preservation Park

Photo of Old Town Square Condos in Oakland

Old Town Square Condos

Photo of canondill graffiti in Oakland

canondill graffiti

Photo of Jack London Square in Oakland

Jack London Square

Photo of Lake Merritt in Oakland

Lake Merritt

Bike Score of Oakland, CA

Oakland is Bikeable

Some bike infrastructure.

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Crime in Oakland

= Lowest Crime

Each year in Oakland, 7 violent crimes and 13 property crimes occur per 1,000 people.

Use our crime maps to find an apartment for rent in a safe Oakland neighborhood.

Pick a neighborhood to see crime maps or type an address to see the Crime Grade for that location.

What's It Like to Live in Oakland?

Photo of Fitzgerald Park in Oakland

Fitzgerald Park

Photo of Martin Luther King Super Stop in Oakland

Martin Luther King Super Stop

Photo of Martin Luther King, Junior Elementary School in Oakland

Martin Luther King, Junior Elementary School

Photo of Fentons Creamery in Oakland

Fentons Creamery

Overview

Oakland isn’t the Bay Area’s second city anymore. With its stunning location on the shores of Lake Merritt and proximity to Silicon Valley employers, it’s come into its own. The ethnically diverse population makes it a cultural playground for food, art, music, and more. While the city still struggles with its crime issues, it’s also working hard at remodeling itself around sustainable development principals. The NRDC ranked Oakland as a sustainable city, recognizing Fruitvale as an icon of walkable and transit friendly living.

Oakland is just six miles across the Bay from San Francisco and it’s close to academic Berkeley, the waterfront city of Emeryville where Pixar makes its home. Oakland was the end of the line for the Transcontinental Railway and remains a busy hub for shipping via land and sea – it’s the fifth most active port city in the United States.

Kaiser Permanente is here, insurance giant GEICO, Dreyer’s ice cream, and cleaning products company Clorox. The tech scene is growing – Pandora Radio, Ask.com, and more and more startups are eyeing Oakland as an alternative to pricy San Francisco. The city’s tax incentives to new businesses are attracting players in high tech and digital media.

It would be naive to ignore Oakland’s crime; you need a lock on your bike and a lock on your door. The city continues to invest in public safety and police services. Oakland is a city that is changing for the better, and people who choose to make their lives here love the diversity, the way it’s connected to the greater Bay Area, and its affordability.

Photo of Ashby Av:Hillegass Av in Oakland

Ashby Av:Hillegass Av

Photo of canondill graffiti in Oakland

canondill graffiti

Getting Around

Oakland’s international airport is a great alternative to SFO – flights often leave Oakland with no problem while SFO is cloaked in fog. BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) and a well connected bus line make Oakland accessible from San Francisco, Fremont, Richmond, and points East. BART allows bicycles on their trains, so a bike and public transit commute is very doable. BikeLink, a service that provides secure bike lockers, has services at most of the regional BART stations if you don’t want to take your bike with you. The region is hilly, so you’ll need strong legs to be a bike commuter. Oakland plans to lay down over 200 miles of designated bike lanes, so they’re serious about making it a good place for cyclists.

AC Transit operates bus service in Oakland and throughout the East Bay. There are express lines from Oakland to Berkeley and to Contra Costa College and TransBay bus lines will take you to San Francisco.

Trains run from Oakland south to San Jose or east to Sacramento from Oakland’s Amtrak station. For now, most residents moving to Oakland will probably want a car from time to time, but CityCar Share has hundreds of car share stations throughout the Bay Area, so you don’t really need to have your own.

thumbnail for Pasta Shop WholesaleThis farmers market is hosted by Phat Beets. Although small, the produce is great and plentiful. The restaurant is also open, so grab some food, enjoy the weather and your produce all in one go! #paradisepark

Julee Lee
on Pasta Shop Wholesale

Neighborhoods

Downtown Oakland is connected to everything you want – you can walk everywhere, you’re never far from transit, and there’s good street life – restaurants and cafes, shopping – here. You’ll find some nice condos in new buildings – studios up to two bedrooms, some of them in gated complexes or security buildings.

Close to downtown, surrounding Lake Merritt, you can find attractive remodeled apartments in smaller buildings, places with bay windows, hardwood floors, some of them with nice city views.

The award winning Fruitvale Village has one and two bedroom apartments in this intentionally developed community that’s right on the BART line. The area was developed with street level business and residential units from the second floor up.

If you’re willing to compromise on walkability, there are some lovely neighborhoods in the Oakland Hills; they’ve got a completely different vibe from the urban heart of the city. Piedmont has classic single family homes, you can find a four bedroom house with a fireplace, or a big craftsman style property with a stone patio and plenty of privacy.

A bit north, in Emeryville, is where you’ll find the brand new condos, green built complexes with gourmet kitchens, or loft like spaces with lots of shared amenities like onsite gyms or swimming pools. To the south, there are some newer complexes at Produce and Waterfront, located right near Oakland’s famous Jack London Square. And to the southwest, there’s Alameda, an island in the bay that’s got adorable little stucco duplexes, some attractive Spanish California style single family homes, and some spectacular waterfront palaces with remarkable views across the bay.

Photo of People Of Oakland: The Gardener in Oakland

People Of Oakland: The Gardener

Photo of Oakland Flower Market in Oakland

Oakland Flower Market

Photo of Jack London Square in Oakland

Jack London Square

Photo of Jack London Square in Oakland

Jack London Square

Piedmont Avenue, Temescal, and Rockridge are becoming Oakland’s hipster magnets, the kind of neighborhoods where you’ll find artisanal sandwiches next to organic coffee bars next to independent galleries next to comic book shops. Piedmont will cost you more than downtown, but you might find that perfect studio in an apartment with Spanish style tile detailing. There are dozens of restaurants, bars, and cafes in Temescal, all easy to walk to. Rockridge, in North Oakland, claims that the main drag, College Avenue, is home to the cities finest dining and wine bars. Rockridge is also one Oakland’s wealthier neighborhoods.

Understanding Oakland neighborhoods is, well, it’s complicated. There are beautiful historic mansions in the Oakland hills, warehouses converted into super chic new lofts along the water, and a gritty but exciting downtown. There are some tradeoffs around walkablity – some of the most walkable neighborhoods are those with the highest crime rates. But Oakland is evolving and those who choose to live there now may find they’re investing in the future of California’s next great city.

thumbnail for Oakland's Prettiest CrosswalkA decorated crosswalk in Oakland Chinatown that makes crossing the street feel special.

Jessica Pfeifer
on Oakland's Prettiest Crosswalk

Oakland is Talking About...

god oco coliseum raiders eating bart coffee fans food car drink play fox theater walk school sleep baseball party athletics bay song

Oakland is all about:

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Photo of Lake Merritt in Oakland

Lake Merritt

Photo of Lake Merritt Lakeshore in Oakland

Lake Merritt Lakeshore

thumbnail for Fox TheaterAn Art Deco lover's dream live music venue. The architectural details inside this theater make seeing concerts here a memorable experience.

Jessica Pfeifer
on Fox Theater

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