Whether you get there early for the banana pancakes at Bette’s diner or arrive midday and enjoy fish tacos from Tacubaya on the patio while watching the trains go by, Berkeley’s Fourth Street offers a fab day out for grown-up shoppers with kiddies in tow. Spengers is another kid-friendly restaurant option, with a children’s menu, walls made from old ships, and plenty of anchors, riggings, and wheels to entertain young eyes in the nautical museum.
The littlest ones will enjoy the toy train set-up at The Ark toy store and style-savvy mamas dig the hip kids gear (Junk Food tees, Flowers by Zoe dresses and Micros board shorts) at This Little Piggy. For a sweet treat, Sugar Bowl bakery or chocolate malts at Bette’s will hit the spot. Bring your snacks to the outdoor area near Peet’s Coffee to enjoy free live music on weekend afternoons this summer.
If you have older kids (3+), head over to Berkeley’s Adventure Park to wear them out on the cool hand-built wooden ships, forts and zip lines to help facilitate a hearty afternoon nap. Moms and pops with younger ones can opt for music time, story time, or open play at Studio Grow, and curious animal lovers can check out the snakes, lizards, frogs, and tarantulas at the Vivarium. Look out for pet adoptions on the Ave. as well, with the fuzzier likes of kittens, puppies, and bunnies looking for a home. Finally, if you want a view of water with your outdoor adventures, there’s nearby Aquatic Park, with castles and towers built into the wooden play structure by the lagoon, and Cesar Chavez Park, with views of the Bay along the rolling playing fields.