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15 Best Things to Do in Antioch, California

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As it happens, Antioch has many amazing things to do. Being Contra Costa County’s third-largest city, Antioch is a busy city that offers city and country life experiences you’ll never forget.

Antioch has 31 incredible parks covering over 310 acres of land. It also boasts some extra 600 acres of open space, owned and managed by the city. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. The city has more goodies to offer visitors.

The list below will simplify things if your next travel plans involve touring Antioch. Here are our top picks for tourist attractions in Antioch. Choose a few and make your experience extra enjoyable.

TL;DR

  • Most significant landmark – Black Diamond Mines Regional Preserve
  • Park to visit – Contra Loma Regional Park
  • Free activity – Discovering the San Joaquin River
  • Activity for kids – Visiting the Paradise Skate Roller Rink
  • Activity for adults – Playing Golf at the Lone Tree Golf Course
  • Place to eat – Mexican Cuisine at Cocina Medina
  • Nightlife – El Campanil Theater
  • Place to stayDays Inn & Suites by Wyndham

Things to Do in Antioch, California

1. Play around at Lone Tree Golf & Event Center

Lone Tree Golf & Event Center
Image by Tripadvisor

Address: 4800 Golf Course Rd, Antioch, CA 94531

There are many places in these parts of California with green landscapes. The Lone Tree Golf & Event Center undoubtedly features on that list. It’s among the most scenic golf courses in the region, with a par-72 layout.

The Lone Tree Golf Course is well-manicured and home to exquisite views. It’s popular with golfers who love rolling fairways. Here, you can sharpen your golfing skills and potentially participate in the different events held at the golf course. One event that is always full of participants is the NCGA Point event.

This golf course has a golf pro shop and a large driving range on-site. Also, a snack bar and beverage cart services are ready for you. And if you plan on staying for some meals, don’t forget to check out the Grille Restaurant.

See Related: Things to Do in Blythe 

2. Tour the Contra Loma Regional Park

Best time at Contra Loma Regional Park
Image by Tripadvisor

Address: 1200 Frederickson Lane, Antioch, CA 94509

Imagine touring over 750 acres of parkland in a new place. Add a tour of the vast Contra Loma Regional Park on your list of things to do in Antioch. This is the best place to spend time outdoors with the kids and explore nature.

Contra Loma Regional Park is a place for adventure seekers. It is part of the East Bay Regional Parks system and offers fun outdoor activities. Visitors can hike the trails, mountain biking, or even camp.

If you want to swim in this amazing spot, head to the Contra Loma Regional Park Swim Lagoon. It’s set on an 80-acre reservoir with a sandy beach where you can sunbathe.

Many locals and tourists love exploring the park and visiting the famous swim lagoon. The reservoir is home to bass, trout, and catfish, so fishing is possible.

See Related: Things to Do in Mendocino

3. Go Back in Time at the Antioch Historical Museum

Address: 1500 W 4th St, Antioch, CA 94509-1046

The Antioch Historical Museum is a fantastic place for both adults and children. Learn the history of this part of the world and the different people who’ve called it home. The Museum is in an old Contra Costa County high school, registered on the National Register of Historic Places, and is one of Antioch’s best places to visit.

There’s no shortage of exhibits, as the museum displays a wide variety daily. In addition to the permanence exhibits, there are also some visiting exhibits that you can catch while in town.

Here, you can find everything from stunning artwork by local artists to historical artifacts. The museum also has professional guides who give tours and help visitors learn more about the exhibits.

Hearing the local stories told by people who know the area is a marvelous experience. This hidden gem is certainly among the best history museums in the region!

See Related: Museums in San Diego to Visit

4. Discover the San Joaquin River

San Joaquin River

Address: 2714 Dairy Rd, Vernalis, CA 95385-9706

Did you know the San Joaquin River is the longest in central California? This majestic river flows through Antioch before it drains into the Pacific Ocean. The whole family can spend quality time discovering this amazing place.

In 2014, the San Joaquin River was in a bad state. So, the American Rivers, an environmental group, brought awareness of this sorry river in such a sorry state.

The river was full of dams and man-made water diversions that fed cities and farms. As a result, most native fish (especially salmon) had a hard time due to depreciating ecosystems. But, after years of restoration and preservation, the San Joaquin River is now a refuge for various fish species.

There are many places for salmon to spawn, and as the numbers increase, locals can now enjoy a good food source. The now clean waters of this river also offer locals and travelers a chance to cool off on a hot summer day.

See Related: Things to Do in Fresno

5. Let the Kids Have a Blast at the Paradise Skate Roller Rink

Address: 1201 W 10th St, Antioch, CA 94509-1406

Kids need to spend time at fun places – otherwise, you’ll start wondering why you had them in the first place. So, after touring museums and historical sites, check out the Paradise Skate Roller Rink.

As you plan on what to do with the kids in Antioch, this amazing skating rink should be on your to-do list. Here, kids of all ages can have so much fun, and you won’t have to spend tons of money as they enjoy the different activities.

The skating floor and rink can give you and the kids a break from the summer heat. Rental skates are available on-site at a reasonable price. All this physical activity is great for letting little ones burn off energy.

Paradise Skate Roller Rink also features numerous spots to host birthday parties and other special events. Check out the snack bar, which serves various beverages and snacks. The place also has a pro shop with roller skates, blades, and skate accessories.

6. Have a Thrilling Experience at the Antioch Speedway

Speed time at Antioch Speedway
Image by Tripadvisor

Address: 1201 W 10th St Contra Costa County Fairgrounds, Antioch, CA 94509-1406

Folks who love speed can watch thrilling rides at the Antioch Speedway. For about 3 hours, families can create memories here as they watch high-speed races. The space has ample track seating and accurate handicap accommodations.

At the Antioch Speedway, you’ll find everything you need for a fantastic time. However, food and beverages are not allowed outside. Once you access the venue, you can buy plenty.

Even better, there’s plenty to see at night, and the place also caters to kids. So, the Speedway undoubtedly fits the bill if you seek things to do with kids in Antioch. You can even meet the drivers, as the Speedway organizes driver appreciation nights.

The Speedway features in the All-Stars Racing Series. This means you can see all the latest models, A&B modifieds, limited editions, and hobby stocks.

See Related: Best Things to Do in Three Rivers

7. Enjoy Mexican Cuisine at Cocina Medina

Cocina Medina Mexican Restaurant
Cocina Medina Mexican Restaurant / Cocina Medina Mexican Restaurant

Address: 5005 Lone Tree Way Suite A, Antioch, CA 94531-8692

Cocina Medina is where you must go if you are craving traditional Mexican-style dishes. This family-owned establishment is in the heart of Antioch, California. It delights in offering fine foods in a happy and welcoming atmosphere.

The good news is all food served at Cocina Medina is fresh and made using quality ingredients. The menu contains mouthwatering cuisines like carnitas pork burritos, shrimp fajitas, and shredded chicken quesadillas. And to cream up your delicious meal, there’s a whole menu of drinks. Now, that’s something to look forward to, right?

This Mexican hacienda-style restaurant is a hit, with locals and tourists flocking. Some even come from as far away as nearby cities to eat at the Cocina Medina.

8. Watch a Play at the El Campanil Theatre

An evening at El Campanil Theatre
Image by Tripadvisor

Address: 602 W 2nd St, Antioch, CA 94509-1270

After dinner at the Cocina Medina, you can catch a play at the El Campanil Theatre. This amazing theater dates back to 1928 and is part of Antioch’s history. It’s located along the city’s downtown waterfront.

If you speak with the locals, you’ll hear many stories about the famous folk performing at this Antioch theater. It’s part and parcel of Antioch’s history and attracts many theater-goers each year. Currently, you can see ballet performances and concerts.

In addition, the El Campanil Theatre showcases some fantastic international films. Many residents and folks from locations near Antioch flock there to enjoy the amazing shows and movies.

El Campanil Theatre’s best shows include Hotel California: A Salute to the Eagles and Top Shelf Classics. So, book tickets to catch shows as you plan your trip here.

See Related: Best Things to Do in Santa Rosa

9. Tour the Black Diamond Mines Regional Preserve

Black Diamond Mines Regional Preserve
Image by Tripadvisor

Address: 5175 Somersville Rd, Antioch, CA 94509

Antioch has numerous outdoor attractions, including the Black Diamond Mines Regional Preserve. Watch as your kids’ minds get blown while exploring the old coal mines in this part of the world.

The Black Diamond Mines is a historical preserve registered under the California Historical Landmark. It’s also listed in the US National Register of Historic Places. People love visiting this preserve to see the old coal and sand mines and beautiful surrounding landscapes.

Here, you can see the relics of three mining towns. The preserve offers visitors a guided tour of the ruins of these towns. This is a chance to understand life during the period when mining was the driving force of the local economy.

Bring some hiking shoes, as this area has 60 miles of hiking trails. Horseback riding and mountain biking are also possible while enjoying the natural wonders. Wildlife in the local area includes foxes, eagles, and mountain lions, so watch out.

See Related: Things to Do in Portland, Oregon

10. Cool off at the Prewett Water Park

Prewett Water Park; best parks in Antioch, CA
Image by Tripadvisor

Address: 4701 Lone Tree Way, Antioch, CA 94531

After long hikes in Black Diamond Mines Preserve, how about cooling off at the Prewett Water Park? The park’s entrance fee is reasonably priced, and there’s something fun for everyone. Park admission also includes entrance to the swimming area, where all the fun is.

At the Prewett Water Park, guests can access lockers to store their stuff as they swim. You can bring your lock or rent one from the management. You can also bring your food to the park. Or, you can buy from park vendors with lots of drinks and snacks.

The park is a perfect spot for a relaxing day with the family. It’s also the best place to host group events. There are numerous fun rides and season packs available. All the regular amenities, including family restrooms, are also available onsite.

See Related: Best Things to Do in Santa Rosa

11. Head to the Antioch Marina Complex

Aerial view of the Antioch Marina Complex or the Antioch Municipal Marina in California
City of Antioch, CA Government / Facebook

Address: 5 Marina Plz, Antioch, CA 94509

Another fantastic spot for water lovers is the Antioch Marina Complex. This is considered one of the best spots in the California Delta for folks who love boating and yachting.

It is also an angling paradise with many fishing areas surrounding it. After setting off from the marina, check out Sherman Lake and Winter Island.

Another advantage of the marina is the wide turn basin for sailboats while racing or sailing. While sailing these waters, you can enjoy some of the city’s most amazing views. The marina offers overnight and permanent berths. From there, you can access various amenities at an affordable price.

Amenities at the Antioch Marina Complex include computer-controlled access gates, exclusive restrooms, and showers. There’s also a coin-operated laundry facility and a free waste pump-out station.

See Related: Things to Do in Mariposa

12. Spend a Day at the Antioch Dunes National Wildlife Refuge

Antioch Dunes National Wildlife Refuge

Address: 2100 Highway 37Petaluma, CA 94954

On a beautiful day, why not opt to spend time exploring the wild Antioch Dunes Wildlife Refuge? This unique place is the only wildlife refuge set up to protect insects and plants. Lange’s Metalmark butterfly and Contra Costa Wallflower are among the flora and fauna you can find here.

At the Antioch Dunes Wildlife Refuge, 55 acres of land are set in the dune system. These dune formations are a result of deposits of glacial sands. Due to widespread mining and industrialization, the area was depleted of valuable natural resources.

Due to conservation efforts, the refuge has become a home to many insect species. Visitors can only move around with a guide, as unsupervised tours aren’t allowed.

See Related: Tourist Attractions in Solvang

13. Hike the Montezuma Hills

Montezuma Hills

Address: Solano County, Antioch, California, 94571

There’s no shortage of fun things to do in Antioch city, especially if you are a great outdoors fan. For example, the Montezuma Hills offer incredible outdoor experiences and magnificent views. These are low-elevation hills on the northern banks of the San Joaquin River.

It is a fun place to hike with the kids, as you won’t need to scale high points. Instead, you cover rolling hills and see the exceptional wind energy farm in Solano County. There’s also a wide range of flora and fauna to enjoy when exploring these amazing hills.

See Related: Things to Do in The Bay Area

14. Treat the Kids to a Fun Day at the Antioch Kangazoom Play & Party Center

Address: 501 Auto Center Dr, Antioch, CA 94509,

Another place to go when seeking fun things to do in Antioch is the Antioch Kangazoom Play & Party Center. This is where all kids’ activities come together to give your children the most epic experience in Antioch.

All children are welcomed at the play and party center, and the staff works hard to ensure a fantastic experience. There is much fun here, including climbing areas, modern video games, a ball pit, and air cannons. Also, kids under four can enjoy a separate play area with a dedicated staff member watching over them.

See Related: Things to Do in Oakland

15. Relax at Sherman Island

Sherman Island, Antioch, CA

Address: Hwy 160 to W Sherman Island Rd, Antioch, California, 95641

When you head out by boat to tour the waters of the San Joaquin River, make sure you pass by Sherman Island. This stunning 14,000-acre island is home to various magnificent wildlife.

Since it’s a park area, you must pay a fee to access it. Overnight camping facilities are also available for visitors. If you’re a camping fan, I highly recommend staying under the stars here.

See Related: Things to Do in San Jose

How to Get There

Tree-lined streetscape of historic downtown Antioch, California with classic architecture and local businesses.
Matt Gush – stock.adobe.com

Antioch is located in the San Francisco East Bay Area. It sits along the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta, a vast inland delta in Northern California. And getting to the city is pretty straightforward.

You can access Antioch via road, train, or flight to a nearby airport. For instance, over 300 train trips from 96 nearby cities to Antioch are made daily, with Amtrak usually making the most trips.

If you are taking a flight, there are around five nearby airports you can fly into, including San Francisco International Airport (SFO) and San Jose (SJC). However, Concord (CCR) is the closest to the city. You only need to choose a flight that favors your budget and schedule.

However, before getting that air ticket, ensure you have valid insurance for yourself and your family. You should also consider a good travel credit card to help you get the best flight deals, bonuses, and discounts.

Places to Stay in Antioch

1. Days Inn & Suites by Wyndham Antioch Top Recommendation

Days Inn and Suites Antioch offers free WiFi in all areas, a seasonal outdoor pool and an on-site fitness centre. All guest rooms and suites are equipped with cable TV and air conditioning, while each has a private bathroom with bath or shower and hairdryer. There is also an on-site launderette.

2. Mount Powell Court, Antioch, California

Nestled in a quiet neighbourhood on the outskirts of Antioch, Mount Powell Court offers breathtaking views of the San Francisco Bay Area. It is also close to many shops and restaurants. The homestay features well-appointed rooms with large flat-screen TVs and a balcony or patio.

3. Hampton Inn & Suites Pittsburg

This hotel in Pittsburg, California is minutes from Black Diamond Mine Preserves park and offers a free hot breakfast every morning. Guest rooms at Hampton Inn & Suites Pittsburg feature free high-speed internet access and coffeemakers. Guests can enjoy a swim in the outdoor pool or relax on their patio or balcony. The hotel's modern fitness centre is open 24 hours a day for guests' convenience.

FAQ

What is there to do in Antioch for free?

There are several free things to do in Antioch. You can explore the Contra Loma Regional Park, the Antioch Historical Museum, or the San Joaquin River. The attractions are unlimited.

What is the best time of year to visit Antioch?

This depends on your reasons for visiting. For instance, summer is the best time to swim in the San Joaquin River. However, autumn is ideal if you want to see the fall foliage. Most people will visit Antioch between August and October, when the weather is pretty friendly, between 68°F and 79°F.

What is the best nightlife in Antioch?

There are several nightclubs and bars in Antioch that offer a great nightlife experience. You can check out Legends, Voodoo Hookah Lounge, or Bourbon Street Bar & Grill.

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