Lake Merritt Parking Guide: Convenient Lots & Top Tips

Last Updated on July 1, 2022 by Snezana Grcak

Lake Merritt Parking

Lake Merritt is a 140-acre tidal lagoon and landmark in the center of Oakland, California. Parking is rarely an issue in this wildlife refuge; street parking is plentiful, and several surface lots are nearby. Discover the most convenient lot, daily rates, and transportation alternatives to create a detailed travel plan.

Parking at Lake Merritt

Parking map of Lake Merritt

The lake does not have its own parking lot, but its official website recommends Lakeside Park Parking (red circle), placed across Lake Merritt and along Bellevue Avenue (via Grand Avenue). This is the most convenient Lake Merritt parking area if you’re looking to enjoy the lake’s most popular amenities.

The Lakeside Park Parking Lot is open from 7:30 AM until dusk. We listed the day parking rates below:

Day/Vehicle Type Duration Price
Monday – Friday 2 hours $2
All day $10
Saturday – Sunday All day $5
Holidays All day $5
Buses All day $15
Events (After 5 PM) All day $10

Alternative Parking Near Lake Merritt

If the Lakeside Park Parking Lot is full, lake visitors may consider parking at a nearby surface lot or parking garage. We selected the nearest and most affordable choices. The rates listed are for a three-hour stay.

Location  Rate Distance
1309 Madison St. $14 0.5 mi
915 Fallon St. $9.25 0.5 mi
1446 Harrison St. – Lot 46 $9.75 0.8 mi
1500 Harrison St. – Lot 6 $9.75 0.8 mi
1571 Harrison St. – Lot 69 $11.75 0.8 mi

The rates listed are for a three-hour stay. There may be a variation in pricing among platforms or at different times of the day. SpotHero may offer free extensions at the facilities mentioned above. The app also suggests several convenient parking areas near Lake Merritt Boulevard and Lakeshore Avenue.

Street Parking Availability

If you’re looking for a nearby parking spot, many street spots are placed around the lake. However, we urge visitors to read the signs and see the map below—metered parking is purple, while free parking areas are marked in green. Note that the Oakland City Council has been planning to add meters to several free areas, specifically those bordering the lake.

Street parking areas in Lake Merritt

Parking meters cost $2 per hour with a maximum of 2 hours. Always remember to read posted signs to avoid incurring an Oakland parking ticket.

Alternative Transportation Options

AC Transit Bus Line 12 and NL drop by the Grand Av & Perkins St bus station, just a 5-minute walk from the lake. The local single-ride fare is $2.25.

The Bay Area Rapid Transit Orange and Yellow lines drop by the 12th St. Oakland City Center BART station, a 17-minute walk from the lake. Use the BART Fare Calculator to determine the total price.

Find the Best Parking Spots in Oakland

Our expert guides can make your parking experience in Oakland easier—learn more about the following.

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