Bay Area staycation guide for spring break

Bay Area Staycation Guide

Thanks to Shoott for sponsoring our Bay Area Staycation Guide.

Shoott has a fresh new schedule for family photoshoots featuring expanded locations outdoors with natural lighting, for their signature Insta-worthy 30-minute sessions throughout the Bay Area (including sessions in East Bay, SF, North Bay, South Bay, and the Peninsula).

My family loves to “staycation”. Sleep in our own beds and enjoy the stuff that makes the Bay Area magic? Yes, please! We like to build our day around mini adventures when school is out. Are you sticking around for closer to home this year? How many of these day trips and adventures for grade school-age children can you squeeze into your Bay Area staycation?

ferry building staycation
Looking at the water from the Ferry Building is a gorgeous spot for a family pic. | Photo provided by Shoott

Climb rock formations and see a new landscape at Rock City at Mount Diablo State Park or Indian Rock in Berkeley. If you pose just right, it’ll look like Joshua Tree.

Ropes course challenges. Quarry Park is worth the drive for children over age ten capable of climbing, swinging, and hanging around.

Hike among the redwoods. Some of the country’s tallest trees live right here in the Bay Area. Whether you venture up to Muir Woods or get lost in Redwood Regional Park, hug a tree for all of us.

redwoods family walk
Family photo among the redwoods courtesy of Shoott | Use code 510FAMILIES to save 10% off all orders of 5+ photos!

Get a family portrait taken. Shoott offers affordable outdoor photo sessions throughout the Bay Area at cool outdoor locations to allow for proper social distancing and photos taken in beautiful, natural light. Use code 510FAMILIES to save 10% off all orders of five or more photos. Reward cooperative kiddos with ice cream after.

Ride horses in Point Reyes. Ride horses on the ranch half a mile north of Point Reyes Station looking over Tomales Bay and Point Reyes National Seashore. $70 per hour per person or $90 for 90 minutes. For ages 6+ Website >>

Brunch and more. Julia from Shoott loves to drive down to Mission Ranch in Carmel for Sunday brunch so the kids can enjoy sheep watching. Fresh air, yummy food, and sheep grazing in the pasture — what could be better?!

Splash in the waves at a Bay Area beach. Crissy Field (below) has all the views and is so close to the Presidio. Hearts Desire rewards your long drive with a lovely, secluded beach.

Mom and kid at Crissy Field San Francisco
Playing around Crissy Field San Francisco | Photo by Shoott, family sessions are fun and complementary to book

Venture out to Safari West for a special look at wild animals. Pretend you’re in Africa. (Call today for a reservation.)

Go on a miniature exploration. Did you know that there are adorable gnomes hiding out in Oakland? Or a fairy village at Little Point Richmond? And rustic trolls in an Oakland woodland? You and your children will adore these special urban hikes.

Shoott is perfect for family photos, reunions, maternity, engagement, and couples shots, as well as personal branding and social media. A photoshoot is a great excuse to get out of the house for some fresh air and a change of pace. Capture these memories. You only pay for photos you love at just $15 each or less!

Visit with animals at the Little Farm. Run off your ya-yas afterward in the woods or a packed lunch at Jewel Lake.

Garden party at a Tilden Park Botanical Garden (free). Be outside together and enjoy ten acres of native plants together.

Piedmont Park family
Play at Piedmont Park for bigger smiles before your family pictures| Photo by Shoott, high quality photos without the high prices

Go kayaking or stand-up paddleboarding. Playing in the water makes it a vacation! Check out some of the lakes, shores, and beaches that cater to water sports in the Bay Area. We like these local places for SUP.

Stomp in the creeks. Stick closer to home with a morning romp in an East Bay creek and ice cream treats for dessert. Here are five creeks we love for little kids.

Stay up late for stargazing. You don’t need a telescope to see the Milky Way. Summer is a great time to seek it out, mostly because it’s warm at night. Stargazing can also be very exciting when your kids get to stay up past bedtimes and drive a bit to escape the nearby light pollution. Our Guide to Stargazing With Kids & Seeking Out the Elusive Milky Way >>

stargazing julia gidwani
She thinks we’re stargazing, I might call this “moon-gazing” at dusk | Photo: Julia Gidwani

Thanks to Shoott for sponsoring today’s guide to fabulous family staycations in the Bay Area!
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