Here is a great idea for a day trip and weekend outing in the East Bay. It is a secret, but I am going to tell you now…
I am sure you visited Berkeley already, you saw the campus and down town and even went walking in the Berkeley hills. But you probably did not visit the Thai Temple yet. It is called Wat Mongkolratanaram, a temple nestled in a residential neighborhood in Berkeley. If you drive by fast you would probably not see it. Drive by slow and a great temple becomes visible. Take your time and chill out.
Sunday brunch is the time to visit this temple. Every Sunday from 10am-2pm the temple courtyard is transformed into a big, open-air restaurant and food market. There are people everywhere, tables and chairs. You see people from all walks of life, which is sometimes refreshing when you are used to the Peninsula crowd. Cool hipsters, UC Berkeley students, families and hippies meet for a communal lunch here.
Apart from meeting new people you get the best authentic Thai food ever. From starters to mains, deserts and Thai tea, you find it all here. Value for money is very good.
You can find the temple here:
Wat Mongkolratanaram, 1911 Russell St. (between Martin Luther King Jr. Way & Otis St., next to the Tool Lending Library), Berkeley, CA 94703.
Afterwards head into the Berkeley Hills and go for a beautiful walk.
So, for those of you who are up for a different experience in the East Bay, go try the Thai brunch at Wat Mongkolratanaram.