Travel Planning
Travel Planning

Berkeley at a Glance

Berkeley is the home of the University of California, which is the oldest California state school. With its diverse student body and eclectic residents, Berkeley is known as one of the most politically liberal cities in the United States.

The sleepy hamlet of Berkeley didn't experience population growth until after the San Francisco Earthquake of 1906. Berkeley suffered only minor earthquake damages. As a result, it became a safe haven for refugees who poured across the bay to start fresh. During the 20th century, the university grew and so did the population of Berkeley. Student protests made campus famous during the counter-cultural revolution and the Vietnam years. 

Berkeley is a fun place to visit for its student energy, as well as its one-of-a-kind bookstores and coffee shops. The city is especially well-known for its cuisine. Check out its trendy restaurants featuring fresh, local fare.

What to Expect
High Season
May - September
Low Season
October - April
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      Getting There
      Passport / Visa Requirements

      All travelers to the United States are required to hold a valid passport; the passport should be valid for six months beyond your departure from the U.S. The Visa Waiver Program (VWP) allows citizens of 37 participating countries to travel within the United States without a visa for 90 days; travelers must have valid Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) approval prior to travel, return travel tickets and a passport with a photo and an electronic chip. Visitors not eligible for VWP must apply for a non-immigrant visa. For more information, visit the U.S. State Department's travel website.

      Considering Driving?
      Distance from San Francisco, CA
      8 miles
      Estimated Drive Time
      0 hour(s)
      Need to Know

      Severe Weather Berkeley has mild weather and is often even foggier than San Francisco. Watch out for coastal fog when driving at night or during the winter. Dry air during the summer frequently parches the fields and causes grass fires.  

      Safety Concerns Take common sense steps to keep yourself safe. Be careful not to flash valuables and stay in safe, well lit areas at night. 

      Health Concerns Risks are low for contaminated water and severe communicable diseases. Basic hygiene will help travelers avoid common illnesses.