Island Vibes

Coastal Bike Ride in Alameda and Forbidden Island Tiki Lounge

Our own piece of island paradise does exist here in the Bay Area! Enjoy a slice of island life on this 8-mile coastal bike ride through Alameda that ends with a tropical cocktail at Forbidden Island Tiki Lounge.

From Littlejohn Park, pedal north on Sherman Street, then turn left into Jean Sweeney Open Space Park. The paved bike path leads past picnic areas and art installations before intersecting with Wilma Chan Way. Turn left, then continue onto 8th Street toward Washington Park. Soak up the salty sea air as San Francisco Bay swims into view. Turn right on Central Avenue, then left onto McKay Avenue to visit the Doug Siden Visitor Center at Crab Cove. This family-friendly aquarium has free admission, and kids can get an up-close look at native Bay Area sea life.

Turn left on the bike path to cruise through Robert W. Crown Memorial State Beach. This beautiful park features sandy beaches, native flower gardens, and sprawling, grassy picnic areas. Enjoy views of kite surfers riding the waves as San Francisco glows on the horizon.

Continue along the bike path as it follows the coastline. Public beaches line the route, including Alameda Beach. At Elsie Roemer’s Bird Sanctuary, take a moment to visit the boardwalk and search for herons, avocets, and the endangered California clapper rail.

From the bird sanctuary, turn inland and ride up Broadway, a long stretch of Victorian homes with colorful flower gardens. At Clement Avenue, turn left and follow the bike path as it curves toward the north coast of the island and the marina filled with gleaming sailboats.

At Jean Sweeney Park, turn left onto Sherman Street to return to Littlejohn Park or end the ride with a colorful cocktail! Forbidden Island is a tropical tiki lounge with 150 different types of rum, including several locally distilled options. Kick back with live music or vintage movies at the bar.

Free street parking is available near Littlejohn Park and Forbidden Island. From I-880, exit onto Fruitvale Ave. Continue onto Tilden Way, then Lincoln Ave. Forbidden Island is located at 1304 Lincoln Ave. At the Sherman Street intersection, turn right to arrive at Littlejohn Park.

Story and photos by Heather Werner, @heath.er.wer.ner

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