Livermore, a city with 85,000 inhabitants, is located at the eastern edge the greater San Francisco metro area. It’s well-known for its large national lab.
The city is located along the I-580 corridor, which connects San Francisco to the west and Oakland to north. It also links to the state’s Central Valley as well as inland cities such Stockton and Modesto.
If you don’t want to travel too far, there are plenty of things to do within the city. Day trips to San Francisco or nearby wine-producing areas are also popular.
Here are 15 things you can do in and around Livermore California.
1. Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory Discovery Center
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory ranks among the top employers in the region. Although most of the facility is closed to prying eyes, the Discovery Center has a variety of educational and unique exhibits that will engage curious minds.
When the weather isn’t ideal for outdoor activities, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory Discovery Center makes a great spot to spend a few minutes. Both young and old alike love it.
2. Del Valle Regional Park
Although San Francisco is subject to more rainy and cloudy days than San Francisco, Livermore’s weather tends to be more sunny and conducive for outdoor activities such as hiking, biking, and watersports.
The city’s center is only 20 minutes away from Del Valley Regional Park. This park is a great option for nature-lovers who are active and want to enjoy the outdoors without having to travel far from home.
The park has more than 100 campsites that can be used for a night under the stars. Many of these sites have electricity and water hookups.
Ravenswood, built over 125 years ago was the summer home for a prominent local citizen who was attracted to the natural beauty of the area.
Although it has seen many renovations and upgrades, most of the home remains in its original condition. It is a popular location for weddings and professional photography shoots.
There are impressive gardens, orchards, as well as outbuildings such as a carriage house or cottage.
Docents are dressed in period garb and lead guided tours. Call them or visit their website to reserve your spot.
4. Shiva-Vishnu Temple
The Shiva-Vishnu Temple, tucked away in a quiet corner of suburban Livermore is one of the most distinctive cultural attractions in the area.
It is often a surprise for those who happen upon it, to find such an impressive and ornate example of Indian architecture in a traditional California neighborhood.
A variety of Hindu deities are adorn the temple’s pyramid-shaped structure. There’s a large hall inside, as well as a large kitchen where you can prepare delicious vegan meals.
The temple can be found on Arrowhead Avenue in Livermore. It is not far from downtown.
5. The Bankhead Theater
The Bankhead Theater, one of the three components that make up the larger Livermore Performing Arts Center is a popular venue for live entertainment that has been in operation for over a decade.
To provide community members with access to the performing arts, the theater was established.
The theater offers a wide range of year-round productions, including performances for children, contemporary music and stand-up comedy, as well as dramatic theater and chamber orchestra.
Many shows feature local talent and there are often free shows throughout the year.
The theater is located at First Street in Livermore.
6. Centennial Light Bulb
Many people say that after visiting one of Livermore’s most popular and interesting attractions, they don’t make them like they used too.
People who are knowledgeable about obscure local legends claim that the Centennial Light bulb in Livermore has been burning continuously since its installation in 1901.
Some estimates say that it has given off light for over one million hours consecutively, which makes it truly remarkable.
You can find the bulb inside the historic East Avenue fire station. It’s been a reliable beacon for over a century so make sure to stop by and have a look.
7. Sycamore Grove Regional Park
Livermore’s Grove Regional Park covers nearly 900 acres and is considered one of the largest recreational spaces in the city.
The park is located at Wetmore Road. It offers outdoor enthusiasts a variety of recreation options including running, biking, walking and horseback riding.
The park’s main attraction is the 2 1/2-mile paved path that runs through many natural areas. A shorter loop trail is also available, which is a great option for families with small children.
It’s not uncommon to see many species of wildlife from the park’s trails. A picnic area with covered seating and toilets is located just a few steps from the parking lot.
8. Wente Vineyards
Wente Vineyards, one of the oldest wineries in North-central California’s Livermore Valley, is a winner.
The original vineyards were established almost 150 years ago. They are still managed and owned by the fifth generation of the original family.
Winery tours offer a unique opportunity to see how grapes are made into delicious and intoxicating beverages.
There are many lengths available for tours. They may include the farm’s harvest and production facilities. You can also enjoy tastings with bread or cheese.
9. Hops & Sessions
Hops & Sessions, a popular culinary attraction in Livermore, features outdoor seating and a comfortable taproom. It was established in 2018.
Hops & Sessions, the Valley’s first taproom that allows guests to pour their own beer, lets them choose from a wide range of delicious beers and doesn’t require waiting for a server.
No matter what your taste preferences, it’s worth learning about the ingredients, flavor profiles, and alcohol content of each beer before you decide which one to buy. Flights are an option for those who prefer to have smaller portions of many beers.
Hops & Sessions can be found on First Street in Livermore.
10. Story Coffee
Story Coffee, located on Maple Street in Livermore is one of the most cozy coffee shops in the city.
Although it is smaller than other coffee shops in the area, it has a pleasant ambiance and comfortable seats. This makes it a great choice for anyone looking to meet up with an old friend over a cup if gourmet coffee.
The simple menu for Story Coffee is displayed directly on the wall. The simple menu includes classic favorites such as hot coffee, as well as modern additions like lattes, cold brew, and fraps.
They tend to have a higher caffeine content than the rest, so make sure you drink it accordingly.
11. Brushy Peak Regional Preserve
Livermore is home to many green spaces, including municipal parks.
Brush Peak Regional Preserve can be described as a mix of a park and a nature preserve. However, unlike other parks that allow adventurous visitors to wander off the trails, Brushy Peak requires that you stay on marked paths because there are some protected species.
Although the preserve has many family-friendly trails to explore, previous visitors noted that there are not many shaded or shady areas. You should bring plenty of water and a hat if you plan to visit during summer.
The entrance to Brushy Peak Regional Preserve is on Laughlin Road. It is a short drive away from the city centre.
12. Livermore Wine Trolley
Winery tours and tasting events can be a lot more enjoyable when you don’t have to drive home.
The Livermore Wine Trolley is available for those who want to make the most of a memorable experience and are not content with being designated drivers.
Wine lovers have a variety of options for day trips with the wine trolley. To offer year-round access, the tour providers have partnered up with many local wineries.
The tours start in downtown Livermore in late morning. They include multiple tours, lunches, tastings, round-trip transportation, and many other activities.
Sometimes, sunset dinner tours are also offered.
13. Lizzie Fountain Park
Lizzie Fountain Park can be found at the corner of First Street, South Livermore Avenue and downtown Livermore.
It is a popular spot for locals to meet up on weekends and evenings. The park’s fountain is a hit with kids who want to cool down during the summer months.
Parents who don’t want to get wet can find nearby seating areas that let them see the action and stay dry.
You will find many night attractions nearby, including bars, restaurants, theaters, and other entertainment venues.
14. The Livermore Art Association
The Livermore Art Association, located on 3rd Street downtown in one of the most historic buildings in the city, is dedicated to the preservation and promotion of works by local artists.
The gallery houses paintings, sculptures, pottery, photographs and ceramics. The galleries are open for public viewing during part of the week, and at weekends.
Although the hours of operation vary, they are often extended during the season when K Street is home to the local farmer’s markets.
This is a great place to visit if you are interested in seeing amazing art without having to pay the high entrance fees that private museums and galleries charge.
15. Livermore Valley
Although Livermore is less urban than its neighbor to the west across the bay, a day trip into the beautiful Livermore Valley is an option for anyone who wants to get away from the bustle and hustle of the city.
It is located just minutes from downtown and features rolling hills, large vineyards and excellent eateries.
Although the 50+ wineries in the region are the main draw, there are many renowned craft breweries along the valley’s “Brew Trail.”
Visitors who want to make the most out of their time often combine outdoor activities such as hiking with a winery tour or tasting in the afternoon.