Hayward is an unsung gem of Northern California, too often forgotten next to its hipper neighbors of San Francisco and Oakland. But Hayward has much to offer. It's centrally located in the heart of the nearly fog-free East Bay, features rare coastline access to the marshes of San Francisco Bay via the Hayward Shoreline Interpretive Center, and has one of the oldest Japanese gardens in California. Getting there is easy. Travelers can choose between arriving into nearby Oakland, San Jose, or San Francisco. Oakland International Airport (OAK) is often the most convenient choice, about 10 miles from the heart of Hayward.
Transportation from OAK
Arriving flights to Hayward via Oakland will feature stunning San Francisco Bay views and ridges of grassy hills to the east. Hayward hotels are all easily accessible from the Oakland Airport, which has extensive ground and light rail (Bay Area Rapit Transit) transportation options. Private taxis are plentiful and can get you in and out of the Oakland airport in minutes. Renting a car, however, will give you the most flexibility during your trip, especially if your plan includes visits to Napa Valley or the Pacific coastline. At the Oakland Airport, shuttle buses leave from the terminal to the Rental Car Center every 10 minutes, which can be accessed from the fourth curb outside baggage claim. Once you've arrived, get ready for some fun. Hayward lies at the junction of California Route 92, about 30 miles from the charming village of Half Moon Bay, which pairs a quaint downtown with fantastic ocean access. Locals love Poplar Beach in "HMB" for two reasons: It's dog friendly, and it's often quiet, given a semi-steep walk down from the bluff top. Try to travel during off-peak times, as traffic can be tough.
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