15 Best Things to Do in Pleasanton (CA)

Pleasanton is a city of approximately 70,000 people located in Alameda County in the San Francisco Bay Area. The city is known for its central location and mild climate most of the year.

Pleasanton has many parks and green spaces where visitors can engage in a variety of outdoor activities, including swimming, boating, hiking and fishing.

The city also has a variety of restaurants and shopping centres, including Stoneridge Shopping Centre, Pleasanton Gateway Shopping Centre and Pleasanton Square Shopping Centre.

Numerous festivals and events are held each year in and around Pleasanton, including the Alameda County Fair. Friday concerts in the park are held weekly during the summer and feature local bands.

Here are 15 of the best things to do in Pleasanton, California.

1. Learn about the history of Pleasanton at the River Main Museum

Posted by Main Street Museum on Friday, February 14, 2020

Located in downtown Pleasanton, The Museum on Main showcases the history of the town and its surrounding area.

Built in 1914, the building houses many artifacts and exhibits highlight a range of topics such as industry, local cuisine, sports, and Native American history. There are also some audio and video demos.

2. Spend your time outdoors at the Shadow Cliffs Regional Recreation Area

Shadow Cliff Regional Recreation Area

Sunny, warm days in the area are best spent outdoors, enjoying the natural beauty and fresh air. The Shadow Cliffs area recreation area is the perfect place for the whole family to spend a day outdoors and enjoy a variety of activities.

This 80-acre park features many picnic areas and trails for hiking. The on-site lake has a beach area ideal for swimming, boating and fishing for trout and catfish.

In summer, there is a small cafeteria near the beach, and an interpretive center displays information about the park.

3. Satisfy your hunger at Nonni’s Bistro

“We have brunch on weekends.”

Posted by Nonni’s Bistro on Sunday, October 4th, 2020

Whether it’s breakfast, brunch, lunch or dinner, Nonni’s Bistro in Pleasanton will satisfy your appetite.

The extensive menu includes a variety of soups, salads, desserts and entrees such as grilled salmon, filet mignon and grilled maple duck breast.

The drink menu includes beer, wine and a variety of cocktails.

4. Taste local wines at Rubino Estates Winery

Rubino Estate Winery

Rubino Estates Winery is situated in a beautiful setting overlooking the magnificent Livermore Valley. Perfect for tasting wine and enjoying the peaceful surroundings.

The winery produces award-winning California and Italian wines, including Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay and Trebbiano.

You can sample these wines in the on-site tasting room and enjoy a delicious lunch at the on-site deli. The picturesque grounds are perfect for a picnic if you want to have lunch outdoors. Winery and grounds can be visited.

5. See the sights and sounds of downtown Pleasanton

Downtown Pleasanton

Downtown Pleasanton is a beautiful and peaceful place for a warm afternoon or evening walk.

Head to Main Street to browse the window displays, or dive into cute little shops where you might find the perfect gift or item to add to your home decor. Enjoy coffee or lunch in the cozy café, or admire local art in the gallery.

The creek that runs through the area is the perfect place to take a walk or relax and enjoy the sights and sounds of nature.

If you happen to be downtown on a Wednesday night in late spring or summer, you’ll find yourself indulging in a lively neighborhood party with food trucks and live entertainment.

6. Visit the Alameda County Fairgrounds

Heathcote-MacKenzie Heritage House, Alameda County Fairgrounds

Once a year, the Alameda County Fair is held at the Alameda County Fair in Pleasanton, but you can visit the 270-acre fair and see a variety of attractions anytime.

If you happen to be there at the right time, you might be able to watch some horse racing live at the oldest racecourse in the country.

Also on site is an arena, an amphitheater, a model train display, a 9-hole golf course and the Heathcote-MacKenzie Heritage House, which dates back to 1905.

7. Enjoy live entertainment at the Firehouse Arts Center

Fire Station Art Center

When you arrive in Pleasanton, be sure to check the events calendar for events at the Firehouse Arts Center. Whether you like live music, movies, theatre or comedy, this 220-seat venue has something for you.

8. Visit Ruby Hill Winery

Ruby Hill Winery

Not far from Pleasanton is the gated community of Ruby Hill, home to a family-owned winery called Ruby Hill Winery. A variety of wines are produced on-site, and visitors can tour the facility and taste some of them.

Guests can relax in the luxurious tasting room and enjoy exclusive wine tasting sessions hosted by knowledgeable staff.

For a more refined experience, visitors can opt to join the two-hour Mello Cielo Vineyard Experience Tour. This includes tours of vineyards and production areas by private vehicle, as well as wine and food tastings at the Water Tower.

You can also buy food, accessories and clothing on site.

9. Combine history with the outdoors at Alviso Adobe Community Park

Alviso Adobe Community Park

Pleasanton’s Alviso Adobe Community Park has the best of both worlds – an outdoor oasis with plenty of trees and beautiful scenery, as well as the opportunity to learn about local history.

Sitting on the grounds of this 7-acre park is a restored Adobe House built in 1854. This California Historic Landmark is one of the last remaining early American adobe houses. The interior is the same as in the early 1900s.

There is also a model Meadowlark Dairy, an outdoor play area and an exhibit on Ohlone culture.

10. Sit down and eat at Salt Craft Central Kitchen

Posted by Salt Craft on Thursday, September 3rd, 2020

At Salt Craft Central Kitchen, the chef brings his home-cooked meals to the open kitchen of his farm-to-table restaurant in downtown Pleasanton. The atmosphere is casual, the service is friendly, and the food is delicious.

On the menu, you’ll find a wide variety of items including homemade breads, sandwiches, salads, tacos, quesadillas, cured meats, hot entree dinners and baked desserts.

11. Pleasanton Farmers Market

Pleasanton Farmers Market

Once a week throughout the year, the Pleasanton Farmers Market is held downtown. Many vendors sell a variety of items.

Fresh and locally grown organic produce, honey, eggs, homemade jams, desserts, meats, seafood and specialty cheeses are just some of the items you’ll find at this market. There are also live concerts by local artists.

12. Augustine Bernal Park

Visitors to Augustine Bernal Park in the Pleasanton Hills can enjoy a variety of outdoor activities on 237 acres of green space. Guests can go hiking, cycling and horse riding on nature trails with stunning views of the surrounding area.

13. Admire the Granizo Tile Art Murals

Granizo Tile Art Mural

Granizo Art Mural is a community art exhibit in downtown Pleasanton created by artist Guillermo Wagner Granizo. The work can be viewed in a number of ways and tells the story of the region and its colorful past.

The mural aims to gain insight into the area’s agricultural, historical, commercial and filmmaking contributions.

14. Eat delicious food at Pastas Trattoria


Located in downtown Pleasanton, Pastas Trattoria is a family run restaurant that has been serving quality meals for over 20 years. Open for lunch and dinner daily, with al fresco dining.

Enjoy spectacular views while enjoying a selection of appetizers, pizzas, soups, salads, pasta and a variety of entrees such as New York Steak and Penne Alla Vodka. After your meal, head to the casual bar area for a delicious cocktail.

15. Pleasanton Ridge Regional Park

Pleasanton Ridge Regional Park

There are plenty of places to go for beautiful views of Pleasanton and its surroundings, but Pleasanton Ridge Regional Park is probably the best place to see them all. On good days, it’s also a popular place to get some fresh air, exercise and enjoy a range of outdoor activities.

This park is the ultimate haven away from the crowds of the city without having to travel far. In this 5,200-acre park, you can enjoy hiking, horseback riding and biking on miles of trails. Take a break on a ridge overlooking the city and the nearby Livermore Valley.

There are picnic areas throughout the area so you can spend the day on the tour and enjoy lunch around the peaceful wilderness area.

Where to Stay: Best Hotels in Pleasanton, CA
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