Top picks & tips for fireworks in the Bay Area

    Fourth of July and in the mood for some fireworks? Your not alone as fireworks are one of the key images that most people have when they think of Independence Day.

    I took this photo of the mega fireworks on display at a Costco in Big Island Hawaii.

    Fourth of July and in the mood for some fireworks? You’re not alone as fireworks are one of the key images that most people have when they think of Independence Day.

    There are numerous shows in the Bay Area. From the hill top vantage point where we live, we see fireworks coloring the evening sky up and down the west coast.

    If you are looking for the ultimate display of pyrotechnics in the Bay Area, here are my top picks:

    San Francisco Fisherman’s Wharf: The area is gorgeous even without fireworks. Add in Fourth of July Festivities and this location easily makes the cut as one of the best places in the Bay Area to celebrate this national holiday. Festivities usually begin by 3 pm with live music along the water’s edge. Fireworks starts after dark around 9:30 from the barges just north of Pier 39.

    Because this venue attracts a lot of people from the Bay Area, using public transit (Caltrain, Bart) is recommended. Wear good walking shoes to get around as there will be many pockets of live entertainment prior to the fireworks show.

    Bring a backpack with water, sunscreen, and make sure each member of your group has a cell phone in case you get split up. Dress in layers as the weather in San Francisco can get very chilly in the evenings. There are plenty of vendors along the wharf that I think make a living just selling jackets to the less prepared visitors.

    Berkeley Marina: Berkeley is a bohemian mecca of arts and music and Fourth of July is no exception. Entertainment kicks off on the south shore of the Berkeley Marina at the foot of University Avenue from noon to 10 pm. The finale is a grand display of fireworks at the end of the Berkeley Pier which commences at 9:30 pm. Click here for more event details.

    There is plenty of free parking at this venue although the roads around this even do close from 7-10:30 pm so plan accordingly. Bring your own reusable plates and utensils so you can enjoy the great food but lower your impact on the environment.

    Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View: If you are looking for a grand show, the San Francisco Symphony this year kicks off the evening at the Shoreline starting at 8 pm followed by a spectacular display of fireworks. You will need to get tickets ahead of time. Here is a link to purchase tickets. This is a good option if you are not looking to fight crowds as you enjoy the fireworks display. There is assigned seating.

    Explore. Create. Live. Follow Stark Insider on Twitter and Facebook. Join our 9,000 subscribers who read SI on tablets and smartphones on Google Newsstand. Prefer video? Subscribe to 
    Stark Insider on YouTube, the largest arts & travel channel in San Francisco.
    Share with your friends










    Submit
    Previous article2011 Loreto Calendar: Stargazing on beach
    Next articlePalo Alto Players announce 2010-2011 season
    Loni Stark
    Loni Stark is a self-professed foodie, and adventure travel seeker, and yet is also passionate about technology’s impact on business and creativity. She's the host of our Stark Insider video features. It’s been said her laugh can be heard from San Jose all the way up to the Golden Gate Bridge. She makes no claims to super powers, although sushi is definitely her Kryptonite. Loni's story...
    • Lisa

      Spelling error, first sentence. It’s not “your” it’s “you’re” as in ‘You’re not alone….”

    • Lisa

      Spelling error, first sentence. It’s not “your” it’s “you’re” as in ‘You’re not alone….”

    • Lisa

      Spelling error, first sentence. It’s not “your” it’s “you’re” as in ‘You’re not alone….”

    • Loni Kao Stark

      Thanks Lisa for catching this – Fixed!

      Hope you had a great 4th of July. This year, I spent it on the Big Island of Hawaii. Watched the parade on Alii Drive and then hung out on the beach for an impressive display of fireworks.

      If you are on the Big Island in Hawaii, my pick would be the fireworks down by Alii Drive. Tip, bring lots of bug repellent and you may consider a lawn chair as well. Park just at the south end of the road closures so you can see the parade and fireworks but then quickly make an exit before the crowds.

    • Loni Kao Stark

      Thanks Lisa for catching this – Fixed!

      Hope you had a great 4th of July. This year, I spent it on the Big Island of Hawaii. Watched the parade on Alii Drive and then hung out on the beach for an impressive display of fireworks.

      If you are on the Big Island in Hawaii, my pick would be the fireworks down by Alii Drive. Tip, bring lots of bug repellent and you may consider a lawn chair as well. Park just at the south end of the road closures so you can see the parade and fireworks but then quickly make an exit before the crowds.

    • Loni Kao Stark

      Thanks Lisa for catching this – Fixed!

      Hope you had a great 4th of July. This year, I spent it on the Big Island of Hawaii. Watched the parade on Alii Drive and then hung out on the beach for an impressive display of fireworks.

      If you are on the Big Island in Hawaii, my pick would be the fireworks down by Alii Drive. Tip, bring lots of bug repellent and you may consider a lawn chair as well. Park just at the south end of the road closures so you can see the parade and fireworks but then quickly make an exit before the crowds.