Oakland Museum of California and Gardens

Oakland Museum of California and Gardens

Average Reviews


The gardens, which cover 24,600 square feet and were finished in 1969, were built on top of the Auckland Museum of California, a piece of steel and glass construction partly below ground level, and projected by architects Kevin Roche and John Dinkelloo and Associates. Dan Kylie was assigned to plan the terraces along with garden architect Geraldine Knight Scott,, who chose the landings for this layout.

The garden has three floors that run from north to south, overlooking Lake Merritt and the city around from patios and terraces, the highlight of which is an inner courtyard flooded below ground level. The roof of the inner galleries is astonished to see that the open terrace for one gallery is located on the roof of another gallery. The terraces are interconnected by broad flights of concrete stairs. Tier concrete plantations, thickly set with small pears, olive and pine trees, shrubs and vines, appearing on the walls of the terraces, determine the area and serve as a ground for outdoor sculptures.

In a flooded courtyard, a square strip of lawn is surrounded by a triangular walkway and bordered by cedar of Lebanon, live oaks and eucalyptus. To the western side of the lawn, there is a large square pool filled as a result of water lilies and stuffed with fish. In 2010, repair work was finished in the museum and gardens. In 2019, garden architecture firm Hood Design Studio designed schemes for a different social entry accessible from Lake Merritt, as well as new terrace landscaping schemes representing various local environments.


Days Hours
Monday–Tuesday CLOSED
Wednesday–Thursday 11 am–5 pm
Friday 11 am–9 pm
Saturday–Sunday 11 am–5 pm