quick links
annual events
Downtown Arts District + Performing Arts
Fourth Street
Parks and Gardens
Telegraph Avenue
Tilden Regional Park
University of California

Berkeley’s Best
miscellaneous + shops

free Berkeley attractions

Berkeley Flea Market    
Ashby Ave./Adeline St., in BART parking lot.  Free. 
Now just a fraction of what it once was, stalls are few and far between.  Merchandise is mostly Asian and African imports, music and movies, costume jewelry, new and used clothing, some incense and body products, but little food. 

display table at Berkeley Flea Market in Berkeley, California
display table at Berkeley Flea Market


ARTICLE:  Take a Tour in Berkeley

TCHO  Chocolate  
3100 San Pablo Ave., (enter factory at 1222 67th St.). 
Tour $15, includes a 25% discount in chocolate store.  Must be age 7+.  No animals. 
Everything I always wanted to know about chocolate was explained–from bean to bar–by the enthusiastic guide on the 90-minute TCHO chocolate-tasting and factory tour.  It was an especially nice way to spend a dreary day.  More description and images. 

chocolate-tasting set up at TCHO Chocolate factory in Berkeley, California
chocolate-tasting set up at TCHO Chocolate factory in Berkeley, California

unique shops

These shops are all one of a kind.  More shops are found sprinkled throughout this section, with a large concentration on Telegraph Avenue and Fourth Street.

ACCI Gallery
1652 Shattuck Ave. 
Representing the work of more than 100 artists, this is the oldest arts and crafts co-op west of the Mississippi.  It displays ceramics, jewelry, paintings, and more, and it is the go-to place to find the perfect gift. 

ACCI Gallery display in Berkeley, California
ACCI Gallery display

Eastern Classics  
1330 10th St.  
This shop is filled with antique and new Asian furniture–a lot of which is made in Shanghai–as well as books on origami and sweet potholders made of classic blue fabric

interior of Eastern Classics shop in Berkeley, California
interior of Eastern Classics shop

Hida Tool & Hardware  
1333 San Pablo Ave./Gilman Ave. 
This small specialty shop stocks exquisite Japanese tools for woodwork, gardens, Bonsai, and kitchens–everything from long-reach pruners to teapots. 

display at Hida Tool shop in Berkeley, California
display at Hida Tool shop

2982 Adeline St./Ashby Ave. 
My jaw dropped when I entered this immense emporium and saw the racks of ribbon, wall of scissors, and assortment of thimbles—to name just a few items.  The shop is literally filled to the rafters with antique lace clothing as well as contemporary tools and materials.  You will want some time to browse. 

Lacis Museum of Lace and Textiles is adjacent, but it is not always open.  Displays include an extensive collection that focuses on lace, textiles, and costume, and it includes more than 12,000 items.  A non-profit, it is not always open.  Free.

interior of Lacis shop in Berkeley, California
interior of Lacis shop

Laura & Kiran 
1425 Fourth St./Page St. 
Lovely fabrics are available by the yard as well as already made up into pillows and table linens.  Indian textiles include recycled sarees made into quilts, scarves, and pillows.  Cute stuffed animals also make beautiful gifts for children.

Laura Kiran fabrics shop in Berkeley, California
Laura Kiran fabrics shop

Lhasa Karnak herb company  
2506 San  Pablo Ave./Dwight.  
This unusual shop opened on Earth Day, 1970, when they shared a small space with long-gone Shambhala Books.  After several moves, it has now taken over the entire space.  This shop offers “the largest selection and the highest quality herbs, essential oils, and other natural products to be found anywhere.  We specialize in Western medicinal herbs and culinary spices, but we have a nice collection of traditional Chinese and Ayurvedic herbs as well.”

interior of Lhasa Karnak Herb Company in Berkeley, California
interior of Lhasa Karnak Herb Company

The Potters’ Studio Gallery  
1221 8th St. 
Artists work in the studios here and display their items for sale in this gallery.  Semi-Annual Seconds Sales are held in August and December. 

ceramic orangatun at The Potters' Studio Gallery in Berkeley, California
ceramic orangatun at The Potters’ Studio Gallery

Urban Ore
900 Murray St.
This huge warehouse shop sells everything used, from books to recycled building materials. More description and images.

Your Basic Bird   
2940 College Ave./Ashby Ave., Elmwood. 
Even if you’re not in the market for a bird, this sweet shop offers a wonderful interactive browse.  A few other small animals are also sometimes available, including floppy-ear rabbits–my personal favorite

orange parrot at Your Basic Bird shop in Berkeley, California
orange parrot at Your Basic Bird shop

(www.berkeleyandbeyond2.com; copyright Carole Terwilliger Meyers)