Visit Concord 2020

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2020-2021 DEsTinatioN gUidE

Coming Soon! Concord’s new regional park with 2,500 acres of publicly accessible open space.

Concord Hills.


WeLCOME TO CONCORD a Northern California Original VISIT CONCORD 925-685-1182 CEO and President ELAINE CORTEZ SCHROTH Marketing & Communications Manager TRACY ROGERS Outreach and Sales Specialist SHELBI WALKER PR and Events Specialist CARLY LEGGITT Visitor Center Coordinator CAROLINE CABRAL

Published by Diablo Publications President BARNEY FONZI Editorial Director DEBORAH KIRK Creative Director DAVID BERGERON Associate Art Director ROXANNE PASIBE Associate Editor EMILIE WHITE Operations Manager CHRIS OLSON Project Manager KENDRA UFFELMAN Ad Coordinator EMILY LAWSON Ad Production and Production JENNIFER BRAZIL, DEBRA DONOVAN, RON HENRY, RENATE WOODBURY Director of Sales DENNIS COOK Advertising Director BARBARA BANIS Senior Account Executive MEGAN TUGGLE



Copyright ©2020 by Visit Concord

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Concord—a sunny, welcoming community in the heart of the East Bay—is a vibrant destination for visitors of all ages. With an abundance of art, entertainment, activities, restaurants, nightlife and more, Concord is the ideal location for a fun-filled getaway, business meeting or team-building event. In fact, our city has so much to offer that out-of-towners as well as residents have a hard time choosing among the many ways to enjoy themselves! And with its convenient location and easy access to airports and public transit, Concord has become a must-visit highlight of the greater Bay Area. Concord is excited to share its many attractions with you. That’s why Visit Concord has just opened a new Visitors Center, at Salvio Pacheco Square in Todos Santos Plaza. The beautiful, Spanish-style building is the perfect space to welcome visitors and help them make the most of their stay here. The Center has been a true labor of love. Working with leading organizations such as the Concord Historical Society, Concord Art Association, Save Mount Diablo and East Bay Regional Parks, Visit Concord has ensured that the Center is a comprehensive resource for the most up-to-date local information. In addition, the Center is sponsoring pop-up events to increase visitor engagement and offering a program for individuals to become Certified Tourism Ambassadors so they can share their insights into Concord’s culture and history with others. We know that this has been a challenging time for everyone. While some businesses may have been affected since this guide went to print, Concord remains the welcoming city it has always been—and we’re glad you’re here, or planning to be. Please check for the latest information. Next time you’re in town, we invite you to stop by our new Visitors Center and find out what makes our community so special! Elaine Cortez Schroth CEO and President, Visit Concord

“As we say in ConcoRd, ‘your soul asceNds much Higher.’ You’ll feel like you’re on top of the woRld!” 3



14 DIning

Concord offers culinary outings for every palate.

20 SIP SCene

Savor craft beers, wines, and cocktails— and caffeine—in relaxed settings.

14 departments First Look Learn fun facts about our city, take a historic walking tour, and find out why we are a shopping mecca! Check out the famous Concord Pavilion and a host of other performing arts offerings. And don’t miss Concord’s popular annual events.

12 Kids’ Zone

Bring the whole family to the spectacular attractions that entertain, engage and educate, from Six Flags Hurricane Harbor and Pixieland to the Markham Nature Park and Arboretum.


24 Recreation

With a scene-stealing mountain, appealing hiking and biking trails, and a pair of golf courses, Concord is just the ticket for those who love the sporting life. Plus, our super-specialized gyms offer unbeatable— and crazy fun—workouts.

28 Lodging

In Concord, you’ll find the perfect hotel for every taste and budget.

30 Plan Your Visit

Everything you need to know about getting here— and getting around once you’ve arrived.


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Concord: A True Northern California Original Fun facts and figures about our wonderful city


The number of water attractions at Six Flags Hurricane Harbor


The number of daily flight operations at Buchanan Field Airport

263 12,500

The average number of sunny days in Concord each year



The number of seats at Concord Pavilion

The number of official California Historical Landmarks in Concord: Don Fernando Pacheco Adobe (built in 1843) and Don Salvio Pacheco Adobe (built in 1835)


The year the Don Francisco Galindo House (also known as Galindo Home Museum and Gardens) was constructed. The Galindo Home has been completely restored by the Concord Historical Society and is on the National Register of Historic Places.

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The number of world championships won by Concord’s Blue Devils Drum and Bugle Corps

Did You Know? Concord is the eighth most populous city in the Bay Area. Concord is the home of the annual Concord Jazz Festival, which turned 50 in 2019. The Concord Jazz record label, created in 1973, operated here until it was bought in 1999. Jazz musician Dave Brubeck was born in Concord. In 2006, a local park was renamed in his honor. Actor Tom Hanks was born here. Concord’s West Wind All Digital Drive-In is one of just 17 operating drive-ins in California. Many Olympians have lived here, including synchronized swimmers Mariya Koroleva, Anita Alvarez, Erin Dobratz, Karen Josephson and Sarah Josephson and speed skater J.R. Celski. Champion swimmer Natalie Coughlin Hall is a graduate of Concord’s Carondelet High School.


GROWTH SHOULD NEVER BE A PROBLEM Concord has more than 3.5 million square feet of office space — for about half of the cost you’d pay in San Francisco — plus 350,000 square feet of new regional serving retail open. Concord is easily accessible with two BART stations and quick access to I-680.

Build to Suit Low Cost Square Footage Attainable Live / Work Community




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GO TO tOWn The past mingles with the future in downtown Concord, as shown by the 28 stops on the Concord Historical Society’s Downtown Historic Walking Tour. Here are some of the high points. TODOS SANTOS PLAZA The heart of Concord both historically and in the present day, the plaza was dedicated in 1869 by the city’s founders, Don Salvio Pacheco, Don Fernando Pacheco and Don Francisco Galindo. It was one of 20 blocks laid out for the town and has been renovated seven times since its creation. Today, the plaza is surrounded by shops and restaurants and frequently hosts performances, markets and gatherings. It is also home to Visit Concord’s new visitor center. CONCORD HOSPITAL The city’s original hospital, founded by nurse Edna Haywood, was a small home at 2334 Almond Ave., and the house there today bears a commemorative plaque marking the spot. The hospital quickly expanded and is now John Muir Medical Center, just across East Street. COUNTY FIREHOUSE The white adobe structure near the plaza was built as the firehouse for the village of Todos Santos in 1938 and 1939 for just $2,800. It still remains in use, serving as an emergency and fire alert station for No. 6 Engine Company.

L E F T: D A R R E N E D W A R D S

FOSKETT & ELWORTHY BUILDING The site of Skipolini’s Pizza has a storied history. First it was home to Sam Bacon’s Store, believed to be the first commercial establishment in Todos Santos. Then the Foskett & Elworthy Corp. built Concord’s first modern stone-stucco building to house its bank in 1911. It has changed hands many times since but still features artwork that pays homage to its origins.

Shop Talk WHILE TODOS SANTOS PLAZA SERVES AS CONCORD’S DOWNTOWN, THERE ARE PLENTY OF OTHER PLACES TO GO IF YOU WANT TO HIT THE STORES. SUNVALLEY SHOPPING CENTER This two-story indoor shopping mecca has approximately 160 different retail outlets for visitors to choose from, as well as more than a dozen restaurants. At the time of its construction, Sunvalley Shopping Center was the largest air-conditioned shopping center in the world; it currently fills a whopping 1,333,000 square feet. THE VERANDA A popular center for shopping, dining and entertainment (including an IMAX theater), this luxurious collection of over 30 shops, restaurants and more is conveniently located near several Concord hotels. WILLOWS SHOPPING CENTER The offerings include home decor stores and outfitters for sports enthusiasts as well as dining options of all kinds—from kid-friendly eateries to the ever-popular Benihana experience.

The Veranda offers a variety of retail, entertainment and culinary experiences.

SALVIO PACHECO ADOBE The first permanent structure in the area, this edifice was built as the headquarters for Don Salvio Pacheco’s 17,921-acre land grant, Rancho Monte del Diablo, in the 1840s. DON FRANCISCO GALINDO HOUSE Built in 1856, this house—originally one of the few Victorian ranch houses in the county—now serves as the museum of the Concord Historical Society.

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LIST eN UP! Highlights from the Concord Pavilion’s illustrious history

NOT-SO-HUMBLE BEGINNINGS The legendary Concord Pavilion was, essentially, the brainchild of Carl Jefferson, a local car dealer and major jazz aficionado. In 1969, Jefferson established the now-famous Concord Jazz Festival and four years later founded the Concord Jazz record label. He was also the moving force behind the Pavilion, which opened in 1975 and has since been dubbed “the house that jazz built.” The Concord Pavilion has played host to musical acts big and small during its 45 years in operation. ALL BY DESIGN The outdoor amphitheater was designed by world-renowned architect Frank Gehry (the creative force behind iconic buildings such as the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao and the Walt Disney Concert Hall). Gehry also oversaw its renovations in the mid-1990s. WHAT’S IN A NAME? Initially called the Concord Pavilion, the venue’s name was changed to the Chronicle Pavilion in 2000, then the Sleep Train Pavilion in 2006, before reclaiming its original moniker in 2014. BEST IN SHOW Among the marquee acts that have performed at the Pavilion are Aerosmith; the Beach Boys; Tony Bennett; Crosby, Stills & Nash; Duran Duran; Bob Dylan; Al Green; the Grateful Dead; Imagine Dragons; Janet Jackson; Lady Gaga; Nicki Minaj; the Police; Diana Ross; Santana; Frank Sinatra; Bruce Springsteen; and Stevie Wonder. SAVING THE BEST FOR LAST Crooner Bing Crosby played his final American show at the Concord Pavilion in 1977. Lawrence Welk’s 1982 appearance was also billed as his farewell concert.


Don't-Miss Entertainment ATG AND RED DOOR ESCAPE ROOMS Concord’s escape rooms offer a variety of spinetingling challenges., B8 THEATRE Concord’s only live theater company performs both innovative new works and modern interpretations of classics at the Concord Historical Society. MUSIC AND MARKET CONCERT SERIES On Thursday nights from May through September and Tuesday nights in July, local bands hit the stage at Todos Santos Plaza. SOLO OPERA This Concord-based company (which performs in Walnut Creek at the Lesher Center for the Arts) offers professional productions of favorite operas. VIBES AT THE VERANDA This fall, enjoy the third annual Vibes at The Veranda, featuring musical artists performing on the plaza.

Speak of the (Blue) Devils The Blue Devils Performing Arts has called Concord home for more than 60 years. The world champions are made up of young men and women between the ages of 8 and 22 from all over the globe and are the most decorated drum and bugle corps in the history of Drum Corps International. The organization also is home to the age-12-and-up Blue Devils Special Needs Color Guard, which performs numbers blending dancing, music, and the spinning of flags in such a way that each member’s strengths shine. Visit for additional information.

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Ar ts & Enter tainment


Meet: Blake Anderson The Workaholics star and co-creator, who spent his formative years in Concord, gives a mini tour of his native city

Q: WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR FONDEST MEMORIES OF GROWING UP IN CONCORD? A: I remember the Singing Flag on the Fourth of July; spending summers at Springwood pool; going mini golfing on Clayton Road; and seeing Motörhead, Dio, and Iron Maiden at the Pavilion. I also would just play outside on my court with all the neighbor kids when I was young. Whether it was shooting hoops, riding bikes, or kicking the can, we stayed pretty active outdoors … until the Jungle [children’s amusement center] opened; that changed the game for sure. Q: WHAT WAS ONE OF YOUR FAVORITE SPOTS? A: My buddies and I used to hang out at Newhall Park all the time, just being dumb kids. That’s also where we started to make videos and movies. Kyle Newacheck [co-creator of Workaholics] had a video

camera, and we would get together and film sketches all the time. Q: WHERE DO YOU LIKE TO GO WHEN YOU COME BACK? A: I pretty much always make sure to hit up the same places. I’ll head over to Todos Santos and crush a burrito at Taqueria Los [Dos] Gallos; they truly have the greatest salsa bar I’ve ever encountered. Then I’ll walk over to the Hop Grenade for an amazing beer selection, and if I’m on a good one, I’ll take the party to Vinnie’s, as long as there isn’t a cover charge that night. I always try to stop in Flying Colors Comics; it really is a superb comic store. And I gotta smash a Nation’s burger before I head back to L.A.

Tigtone, the adult animated series Anderson produces and writes for, airs on Adult Swim, and his clothing line, Teenage, can be found at









IT’S A DaTE A month-by-month guide to fun, fairs, festivals and more

JANUARY CONCORD COMFORT FOOD WEEK Indulge in comfort cuisine from diverse cultures at more than 30 restaurants across the city.

During Concord Comfort Food Week, Puesto dishes up irresistible tacos and much more.

CONCORD COIN SHOW Rare coin and collectibles dealers and collectors flock to Concord to exchange goods and find new treasures. norcalcoin​

FEBRUARY BEER PASSPORT Sample pours from the four local alehouses on Concord’s Beer Trail before the town hosts the Spring Brews Festival in March. Get a stamp at each location to earn a free flight (no purchase necessary).

MARCH THE BREWING NETWORK’S SPRING BREWS FESTIVAL The festival, which takes place each spring in Todos Santos Plaza, is known as one of the best craft beer festivals in the Bay Area.

APRIL SECOND SATURDAY HISTORIC WALKING TOUR The Concord Historical Society’s monthly series of walking tours kicks off for the year, offering up lesser-known facts and fascinating historical details about the city on these free treks through downtown and nearby neighborhoods.


RAKKASAH WEST Experience one of the region’s largest belly dance festivals. Attendees of all ages will appreciate the live music, workshops, food, costumes, jewelry and much more.

MAY MOMDAY IN THE PARK AND ALL AREA MUSIC FESTIVAL This Todos Santos jamboree combines two of the best M-words: moms and music. Dine outside with your mother while listening to talented Bay Area student musicians. BAY AREA KIDFEST Bring the kids to Mt. Diablo High School over Memorial Day weekend for live entertainment, activities, sports and more. ARMED FORCES HALF MARATHON This annual event, which takes place over Memorial Day weekend, begins at the Con-

cord Naval Weapons Station and finishes at Todos Santos Plaza. SPRING TEA AT THE GALINDO HOME Visit the historic Galindo home with some fine teas, treats and a lovely time with family or friends.

JUNE CONCORD PRIDE Celebrate community, diversity and pride at this family-friendly day hosted by the Rainbow Community Center of Contra Costa. CONCORD CRAWL Stroll, sip and shop at this eighth annual event in support of the Concord Branch of the American Association of University Women. VETTE-O-RAMA 50 Auto aficionados get in gear for the 50th anniversary of the Diablo Valley Corvettes’ Car Show in Todos Santos Plaza.

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EAST BAY COMIC CON Comic book creators and adaptation stars tell stories about their experiences, and vendors sell geek goods at this one-day gathering.



and demonstrations, and games for the kids.

TUESDAY NIGHT BLUES Enjoy the music stylings of local blues artists during this free, monthlong concert series. FOURTH OF JULY CELEBRATION A 5K/kids fun run kicks off Concord’s version of the national holiday, complete with a festival, parade and fireworks. COOL CONCORD CARS The first night of summer’s Tuesday Night Blues in Todos Santos Plaza is marked by this free car show, with prizes for the winners.

AUGUST CONCORD JAZZ CELEBRATION With Concord’s long history as a jazz capital, this annual festival will enlighten, engage and entertain.


DIABLO JAPANESE AMERICAN SUMMER FESTIVAL Explore the many facets of Japanese culture at this popular annual gathering that includes performances, food, exhibits

CONCORD TACO FEST Prepare to dine out on mouthwatering offerings from more than a dozen taco destinations in one delicious day at Todos Santos Plaza.

SEPTEMBER HISPANIC HERITAGE MONTH Celebrated nationally from mid-September through mid-October, National Hispanic Heritage Month pays tribute to the impact of Latino and Hispanic Americans on our history and culture. DAVE BRUBECK BIRTHDAY CELEBRATION Jazz icon Dave Brubeck called Concord home during the early years of his life. Don’t miss the opportunity to celebrate the 100th anniversary of his birth at the Concord Museum and Event Center during a VIP reception and concert featuring the musical stylings of the Brubeck Brothers, the legend’s sons.

OCTOBER CONCORD OKTOBERFEST TURKEY TROT A re-creation of the German celebration with craft beer, live music, food truck fare, competitions and more. DAY OF THE DEAD FESTIVAL In Latin America, the Day of the Dead honors departed loved ones and celebrates the lives they led. Don‘t miss Concord‘s special celebrations of this tradition.

NOVEMBER On July 4, youngsters enjoy the popular kids fun run.

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TURKEY TROT On Thanksgiving morning, join friends and family at this 5K/10K run and walk to support Compassion Outreach, which helps

Ongoing Highlights FARMERS MARKET A market of fresh local foods and goods in Todos Santos Plaza is held on Tuesdays year-round and Thursdays April through October (subject to change). MUSIC AND MARKET CONCERT SERIES Todos Santos Plaza presents the Bay Area’s best bands on Thursday nights from May 28 through September 24; additional blues performances take place on Tuesday nights during the month of July.

underserved members of the community.

DECEMBER OFFICIAL TREE-LIGHTING AND THE MAYOR’S SING-ALONG Ring in the holidays with carriage rides, a holiday sing-along, the arrival of Santa and the lighting of the tree in Todos Santos. SANTA AT THE AIRPORT Santa Claus visits Buchanan Field Airport to bring the Christmas spirit to travelers. Stop by to take a photo and enjoy holiday treats, and bring a food item to donate. Note: Some of these events may have been canceled or postponed. Go to for the most up-to-date information.



BRING ThE FaMIlY 1. MAKE A SPLASH Get into the swim of things at Six Flags Hurricane Harbor Concord, Northern California’s most thrilling water park. Slip, slide and ride the waves on Hurricane Harbor’s 35-plus worldclass attractions, including high-octane water slides for older riders, the Splashwater Island interactive play area for younger folks and the Kaanapali Kooler Lazy River ride for the whole family. Open seasonally.​harborconcord 2. FEEL THE MAGIC An amusement park like no other, Pixieland is enchanting for parents and children alike. Fun and colorful rides such as the Dragon Roller Coaster and the spinning Tea Cups provide thrills, while the Frog Hopper, Antique Carousel and Red Baron Airplanes are perfect for the little ones. For a must-ride, no matter your age, climb aboard the Pixieland Express and take a quarter-mile journey through Willow Pass Park. 3. INCLUSIVE ADVENTURES Matteo’s Dream playground was built in 2007 within Hillcrest Park, becoming the largest play area in Concord and the first in the Bay Area designed to include children with disabilities. The park features a rubbery floor, ramps for increased accessibility, large musical instruments for the visually impaired and a stainless steel slide (which eliminates static electricity for those with electronic cochlear implants). The littlest members of the family are sure to enjoy the toddler play area, too.

4. THE GREAT OUTDOORS Commune with the trees at Markham Nature Park and Arboretum. With 2.4 miles of trails, the urban oasis is ideal for hikers and naturalists who will appreciate the 45 species of trees on the Tree Walk—a shady and serene experience that’s especially appealing during hot summer days. There is also a nursery on-site for those who wish to take home a living memento.

Matteo’s Dream playground gives children of all abilities the opportunity to play together.


From natural wonders to water park thrills, there’s plenty of fun to go around. Here are 12 ways to please visitors of every age.


5. THE TOAST OF DOWNTOWN Todos Santos Plaza is the perfect spot to eat, hang out and enjoy the region’s beautiful weather. With more than 20 restaurants to pick from, this downtown destination features many cuisines— including Korean, American, Mexican, Peruvian and German— served up in family-friendly settings; the plaza also hosts a variety of community events throughout the year. Kids can burn off energy at the Todos Santos playground or during a round of laser tag at Q-ZAR. 6. COOL CUSTOMERS Hop on the Ice Cream Trail and tour the city’s sweet spots. Get a classic cone at Loard’s of Concord, which has been scooping up cold treats since the 1950s, or bite into an ice cream sandwich at CREAM. For a taste beyond the ordinary, visit Popbar for handcrafted gelato on a stick (customize your pop with more than 15 toppings and dips) or grab some cookie dough desserts at Out The Dough. 7. LET YOUR IMAGINATION TAKE FLIGHT Budding aviators can get up close and personal with a 1946 Stinson airplane and a Huey helicopter during a historical tour at Buchanan Field Airport. Kids can also watch the planes depart and land from the observation plaza located next to the air traffic control tower, as well as take advantage of an aviation-themed playground with a pint-sized runway and control tower. Youngsters also have the opportunity to take to the skies with the Young Eagles. Sponsored by the Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA), the program provides free rides in private aircraft piloted by experienced EAA members, with the goal of exposing youth ages 8 through 17 to the joys of flying.


8. SHOP AND PLAY The Veranda is primarily a retail center, but even kids who hate to shop will be drawn to the play structure located in Fountain Park near the Veranda LUXE Cinema. Designed to be an interactive, three-dimensional maze, the Veranda Climber encourages problem-solving, spatial thinking and imagination as children navigate their way along 33 suspended green platforms; a surrounding net adds a layer of safety. In 2019, The Veranda also welcomed an outpost of Dave and Buster’s, a beloved entertainment hub promising fun for all through classic games (think skee-ball) and HDTVs for sports fans. Winter visitors can also take advantage of the ice skating rink, open November through February. Ice at The Veranda is in operation during peak shopping hours and skates are available for rent. 9. JUMP TO IT Kids will literally be bouncing off the walls at Sky High Sports, a trampoline park that has become a popular birthday party spot. Dodgeball enthusiasts flock to the trampoline courts for pickup games and scheduled tournaments; there is also an oversize foam pit for tumbling and a court specially reserved for the littlest jumpers.

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10. HAVE A BALL The Flipper Room—tucked away in picture-framing business APF—is one of Concord’s hidden gems. This pinball gallery features 30 machines, with themes ranging from Aerosmith to X-Men, all available for coin play (there is a change machine on-site). Mom and dad will enjoy the nostalgic trip back in time, while younger gamers can discover their inner pinball wizards.

11. LET’S GO TO THE MOVIES Cinephiles of every generation can choose from a variety of spots to take in a show. The West Wind All Digital Drive-In on Solano Way offers the old-school appeal of a drive-in theater with the latest in screening and sound technology, while the IMAX theater at the Veranda LUXE Cinema features luxury recliners and reserved seating, along with its four-story-tall screen. Reserved seating and recliners are also available at Brenden Concord 14, which features a bar menu and top-notch sound and projection in its JB-X auditorium. 12. ACTIVE FUN Round1 at Sunvalley Shopping Center is perfect for family-friendly outings, offering bowling, karaoke, billiards, darts and pingpong alongside comfort foods such as pizza and burgers. On Diamond Boulevard, the Jungle features a bounce house, a wall-to-wall jungle gym and arcade games, with areas designated for different age groups. Parents can join in the fun or take a breather at one of the dining tables. round1​,


Explore global cuisines, try freshoff-the-boat seafood, or experience next-generation food trucks. Wherever your appetite takes you, Concord’s lively restaurant scene has you covered.

concoRd  faVoRites BRasas Do BraZil

This Brazilian steakhouse on Willow Pass Road offers an immersive experience for both eyes and stomach. At the all-you-can-eat venue, servers dressed like gauchos add to the ambiance as they move around the modern space with skewers of hot, grilled meat, serving portions directly onto patrons’ plates. A separate salad bar offers an easy way to refresh your palate between more savory bites.

EmC SeAfood & Raw Bar

CaNasta Kitchen

An inviting trattoria in The Vineyard Shopping Center, Fiore offers a menu of Mediterranean dishes dubbed “Italian fusion.” Standouts include Moroccan chicken, beef tagine and any number of satisfying pastas. Flavors are intensely delicious and portions are generous.

Canasta Kitchen


Mikuni Take scallops, shrimp and Dungeness crab. Add some asparagus, cream cheese and salmon. Wrap it all in arare (Japanese rice crackers), and you have Mikuni’s Concord Roll, created as a tribute to its home at The Veranda. With a definitive focus on fresh, high-quality sushi, nigiri and sashimi, Mikuni satisfies with its classic yet innovative cuisine.

naan N Curry The small storefront off of Todos Santos Plaza might not look like much, but the line out the door should make you think twice. Inside, spices fill the air as the staff prepares mouthwatering Indian fare in the exhibition kitchen. The naan is fluffy, the meat is tender, and the flavors are perfectly balanced—in short, it’s hard to find better Indian food in the whole Bay Area.


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Tables for two fit perfectly by the windows of Canasta Kitchen, a sleek Latin restaurant a block away from Todos Santos. A spinoff of the popular food truck, this eatery doesn’t disappoint with its street tacos and burritos, but it’s the elevated (and Instagram-worthy) flautas and chilaquiles that will make you fall in love with Canasta’s food.

Fresh seafood gets a multicultural focus in this lively, modern restaurant at The Veranda. Dishes run the global gamut, from fish tacos to sushi rolls to Cajun shrimp and uni pasta. The raw bar features an excellent selection of oysters and a fabulous seafood tower.


Naan N Curry

Plate and Vine Fans of classic French cuisine are sure to love Plate and Vine in the Hilton Concord. Chef Philippe Chevalier serves up delectable fare like succulent coq au vin and house-made duck pistachio pate, which reflect his extensive background in classic French cookery.

Puesto It’s all tacos all the time at Puesto in The Veranda. The Southern California chain was founded by first-generation Mexican-Americans and makes a point of its authenticity, with fresh, organic blue corn tortillas and house-made salsas. Its award-winning chicken al pastor taco should not be missed, nor its margaritas.


Vineyards Chop House & Bar This casual eatery in the Crowne Plaza Concord is known for its menu of comfort foods, including mac and cheese, sirloin steak, and roasted herb chicken. Now, under the direction of chef Derek Elam (see box), the restaurant will continue to offer its signature favorites, but with new updates. Vineyards is also an excellent spot to enjoy a craft cocktail, beer or glass of wine.

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Chef Derek Elam of Vineyards Chop House & Bar When chef Derek Elam arrived in Concord at the end of 2019, he was pleasantly surprised by what he found here. “Concord is a big area with a big population,” he says, “but I was happy to discover that it has a welcoming, small-town feel.” Elam moved to Concord to take over as executive chef at Vineyards Chop House & Bar inside the Crowne Plaza hotel. He’s excited by the challenge—plans are underway to renovate the hotel, rename the restaurant and update the menu, giving him the opportunity to showcase his culinary skills. Previously Elam lived in Denver, where he attended culinary school and then worked his way up in the restaurant business, eventually becoming executive chef at the Sheraton Denver Tech Center Hotel. “In school I focused on refined French and Italian cuisine,” he says, “but I’ve also cooked all kinds of dishes with chiles, which are everywhere in Denver. So I’m looking forward to applying the techniques I’ve learned and the flavors I love to Vineyards.”


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Chef Ivan Tellez of Canasta Kitchen Ivan Tellez always dreamed of opening a restaurant that would serve the soul-satisfying cuisine of his native Chiapas, Mexico. After learning the ropes at his family-owned restaurants in Mexico, Tellez moved to Northern California, where he gained even more experience working for star chefs such as Michael Mina. In 2014, Tellez decided the time was right to launch his own Chiapas-style Canasta Kitchen. What began as a Concord-based food truck evolved into a restaurant two


years later—and today, Canasta Kitchen is one of the city’s most popular places to get an authentic Mexican meal. (Insider’s tip: Try the delicious huevos motulenos on the breakfast menu, one of Tellez’s signature dishes.) “Most of our menu is the food I grew up with,” Tellez says. “It’s what I like to eat, and I never get tired of it. I’m grateful that people in Concord really appreciate good food, which is why Canasta Kitchen fits here so well.”

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TACO TRaIL Concord is home to more than three dozen hot spots for mouthwatering tacos. Here are Some of our favorites.

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Mercado Del Sol, a hidden gem on Monument Boulevard, is beloved for its fish tacos. The restaurant offers both crispy and soft options, as well as family-pack choices.


Though Ranchero Taqueria has an extensive menu, consider the al pastor tacos. Keep an eye out for the restaurant’s food truck out in the community, too.


Tortilleria El Molino, a prime stop for al pastor and carnitas tacos, prizes the freshest ingredients in its culinary creations. Every tortilla is made on-site.


At Salsa Verde Mexican Cuisine, enjoy street tacos in a casual sit-down environment. The culinary staff prizes high-quality authentic ingredients and makes all elements of your meal in-house. salsa​verde​


Taqueria Autlan offers world-class carnitas tacos, among a slew of other delectable authentic dishes. Don’t miss the weekly specials on Taco Wednesdays.


Enjoy tasty carne asada tacos at Los Tacos De Pancho, run by 30-year residents of Concord. This hot spot makes oneof-a-kind grilled tilapia fish tacos, too.


La Pinata Mexican Restaurant & Tequila Bar serves unforgettable fish tacos and a Sunday brunch buffet.


Choices at Taqueria Los Dos Gallos in Todos Santos Plaza (Blake Anderson’s favorite!) range from the no-meat Taco Vegetariano to the San Felipe Fish option. Don’t miss Taco Tuesday each week, or the unbeatable salsa bar.


Located near Todos Santos Plaza, the menu at Canasta Kitchen includes a lunch option of three street tacos, complete with avocado, onions, and rice and beans on the side.


Craving a classic carne asada taco? Try Taqueria La Soledad, which serves tasty eats in a bright, homey atmosphere.


Puesto provides a creative twist on a classic favorite with its filet mignon taco, served in a community-​friendly, upscale setting.

For a complete list of 40-plus Taco Trail locations, go to visit​



Rising to the OccAsion From a boisterous family meal to a more intimate dinner for two, here are inviting dining options to satisfy every need

Residual Sugar Wine Bar

Date Night


BRuncH Start off your weekend in style with a hearty brunch; you’ll find classic American breakfast fare throughout the city. It’s hard to beat a classic diner when it comes to flapjacks and bacon. That’s probably why locals line up out the door at the colorful Digger’s Diner. Favorite dishes are the Kitchen Sink omelet—aka bacon, ham, sausage and hot links with onions, bell peppers, mushrooms and American cheese—and the giant (and we mean giant) cinnamon rolls. For an unpretentious yet mouthwatering brunch experience, visit Bay Leaf Cafe. Its front patio is protected by charming planters, which can make the restaurant hard to spot, but those who walk on by will miss out on a multitude of breakfast options. Go for the sweet selections, including the hard-to-resist banana pecan pancakes.

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Make the most of a night out with your partner—or get a new relationship off to the right start—at these romantic hot spots. Tucked away just off Todos Santos Plaza, Luna Ristorante is Concord’s foremost fine Italian restaurant. In a small, cozy space, chef-owner Abdel Redouane serves up the savory results of his years spent cooking in Italy, France and Belgium. Old standards become standouts under his golden touch, and Luna Ristorante’s limited seating ensures you and your date can enjoy your meal with a degree of privacy. Residual Sugar Wine Bar offers an astonishing selection of wines by the glass, and the knowledgeable staff can help you choose the right one for your palate. A small menu of cheeses, charcuterie and small plates is designed to complement the wine varietals. Located in The Veranda, it’s a fun, inviting place to kick off—or wrap up— a romantic evening.

diNing The best Dungeness crab Benedict in the Bay Area can be found at a little cafe just off Monument Boulevard. Gangnam Cafe consistently wins devotees with this dish, as well as its fresh-squeezed orange juice and homey atmosphere. For the little ones, the cook will whip up a Mickey Mouse pancake—complete with eyes, nose and mouth. Craving an old-fashioned, comfort-food brunch? Look no further than the popular Min’s Kitchen, in the El Monte Shopping Center. A cozy diner, Min’s is the place to go for a tempting stack of pancakes, eggs Benedict and fresh-squeezed OJ.

FamilY DiNing

Bring some fun to your family meal at these eateries that cater to the kid in everyone. The Concord outpost of nationwide chain Benihana delivers on the brand’s promise to be as much an experience as a meal. At the always-hopping restaurant, chefs cook traditional Japanese food on the flat stove directly in front of you. Kids will get a kick out of the sleight of hand, knife tricks and more. Skipolini’s Pizza makes it a point to ensure its youngest guests are entertained and well-fed. The whimsically decorated Concord location is no exception. Between the muchvaunted pies and assortment of games on offer, settle in for a truly family-friendly experience. Even the Fuddruckers sign promises a good time, with its bright logo accompanied by three shining stars. The barnlike interior is welcoming, and the simple yet satisfying menu walks the right line between too many and not enough options. Before the meal, your kids can head over to the arcade games, but they’ll soon be running back to the table for their burgers and milkshakes. fuddruckers. com/concord For a hearty brunch, Sugar Plum Coffee Shop is ideal, offering an extensive menu bursting with iconic morning favorites. Kids are sure to love the Classic Breakfast—



one egg cooked any way they like it, with toast and bacon or sausage—while parents will enjoy the shop’s omelet options and signature biscuits and gravy.

SupeR-Healthy Outing Eating healthy doesn’t have to be a chore. You’ll find nutritious and tasty options at these popular lighter dining spots. The minimalist, serene interior of Pure Juice & Smoothie Lounge matches its concise, healthful menu, which offers an assortment of smoothies, juices, dairyfree shakes, bowls and wraps. Grab a power-up before or after a workout, or just relax with a friend while chowing down on a nourishing bite. You may have seen Urban Remedy’s juices, salads and more on the Whole Foods shelves. Now, you can pick up its locally sourced, organic, gluten-free goods at the Concord shop. A few small tables allow for eating on-site, but the prepared food is equally good on the go. Lettuce Inn is an excellent choice if you want to prioritize healthy eating. With a menu of wraps, salads, and more, the restaurant prizes organic and farm-fresh ingredients, putting a unique spin on what it means to eat well.

SWeet CRaviNgs When you’re looking for a sugar rush, consider a stop at these sweet shops. There’s just something about cookie dough—maybe it’s the sense of eating something you’re not supposed to— that makes it taste even better than the finished product. Thanks to Out The Dough—a local company specializing in safely edible cookie dough—you can indulge without the worry. CREAM mixes fresh-baked cookies with ice cream to make warm, gooey ice cream sandwiches. With numerous types of cookies (and brownies and waffles), along with dozens of ice cream flavors and toppings, you can craft your ideal confection. Lovers of frozen treats should also check out Loard’s of Concord, a nostalgia-steeped ice cream parlor in Todos Santos Plaza., loardsof​ You’ll never hear “Cup or cone?” at Popbar. At its Veranda location, the company serves all-natural, handcrafted gelato on a stick, which makes it easy to snack and stroll. The namesake popbars come in more than 40 flavors and can be covered in dips and toppings as desired. Pastry lovers won’t want to miss Alpine Pastry & Cakes, which has been creating oven-fresh cakes, tarts, macaroons, cobblers, and more for some 50 years. A more recent addition to the bakery scene is Cinnaholic, which features irresistible cinnamon rolls, brownies and cookies. alpine​,


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If craft beers, great wines or creative cocktails are your pleasure, you won’t want to miss these standout bars, breweries and lounges

Raise  Epidemic Ales


Concord Tap House This mid-Concord taproom serves as a funky gathering place for sipping from 24 rotating taps focused on local and West Coast breweries—with beer flights for the indecisive—and sampling from a menu of bar-food favorites with a global twist. concord​ Bonus: Keep an eye out for events that range from tap takeovers to the opportunity to sip beer with Concord’s mayor.

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Concord is the perfect place to pull a pint, with events such as the Spring Brews Festival and Concord Oktoberfest—plus a new Concord Beer Trail and tasting passport—cementing the city as a certified malt mecca.

A GlAss! Epidemic Ales Taproom and Brewery Since opening in 2016, this apocalypsethemed brewery has grown from a one-barrel system and eight-draft taproom into a brewery pumping out beer through two 20-barrel fermenters (among others) and 24 taps. Request a yardstick-length flight to sample the full range of styles before ordering from the local food trucks parked outside the kidand dog-friendly space. Bonus: Combine your passion for pints and paint with monthly paint nights, which include all supplies, instruction and a glass of beer.

to pair with beer-injected bites. thehop​ Bonus: Join the “Hop Grenade Army,” a loyalty program that rewards frequent drinkers with discounts on beer and ticketed events, plus early notice on rare kegs and bottles.

E.J. Phair Brewing Company An original in the city beer scene, this Concord alehouse boasts more than 15 drafts split between its Pittsburg-brewed beers and top picks from both local and national favorites. Its food menu features irresistible pub grub options such as fried calamari, beer-battered pot stickers and frickles (fried pickles).

Eureka! It’s hard to beat the extensive beer program at Eureka!, with 40 taps of genre-spanning all-American drafts and a generous twice-daily “hoppy” hour with $2-off beers and snacks designed to soak up the suds, from tasty fried chicken sliders to lollipop corn dogs. eureka​ Bonus: Wednesday “steal the glass” nights let you sample beer from a specific brewery and walk away with the glass.



The Hop Grenade This Todos Santos Plaza taproom and bottle shop also serves as the headquarters of The Brewing Network, a live radio show dedicated to zymology, making it an undisputed haven for hop heads. You’ll often find rare kegs on the 21-tap system—hooked up to taproom TVs to let you know what’s available—

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Visit Concord Beer Trail Learn about the participating alehouses—and how to get a beer trail passport—at

Yard House

Bonus: Swing by on Monday for discounted growler fills and Tuesday for tacos.

Yard House Located within The Veranda shopping center, this Concord outpost of the fan favorite national chain claims to offer the world’s largest selection of draft beer, with 130 taps available. The delectable, American-style menu features more than 100 made-fresh items—including diverse bites such as buffalo cauliflower, jambalaya, street tacos and a black truffle cheeseburger— practically guaranteeing everyone can find something to enjoy. Bonus: Head to Yard House’s website for a full menu of gluten-free appetizer and entree choices.

A cocktail alone is fine, but a drink paired with bargain bites, live tunes or a rowdy sports crowd turns imbibing into an excursion that appeals to more than just your taste buds.


Legends at Diablo Creek Although it’s tucked into a golf course, don’t overlook this bar and live music venue, where you’ll discover $20 beer buckets during happy hour and killer live music from local bands— covers of classic hits and original tunes flow freely. legends​

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HappY Hours and LouNge AcT s

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Nica Lounge

Coffee & TEA

If you’re looking for a place to go dancing, Nica always delivers, with Latinand Caribbean-inflected DJs serving up bachata, salsa and reggae beats on dedicated nights.

Craving a rejuvenating beverage? Concord has a wide

Red Hat Sports Bar


At this Concord institution, you’ll find punk and hard rock-leaning live music on the weekends; karaoke Tuesdays; acoustic open-mic night Thursdays; and a welcoming back patio, pool tables and pinball any day of the week.

Residual Sugar Find more than 30 wines available by the glass, with a range of small and big plates—think charcuterie and cheese boards but also mix-and-match sliders and loaded paninis—designed to complement pours from Spain, Italy, Germany, Austria and beyond.

La Tapatia Head to the bar or patio at La Tapatia from 3 to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday (and again 8 to 9 p.m. Sunday through Thursday) to score lower-priced beers, well drinks, margaritas, wine and select specialty cocktails, washed down with discounted wings, tacos, Mexican pizza and more.

Vinnie’s Bar & Grill

tea. Here are a few standouts.

With five locations in the East Bay, including at Concord’s Veranda shopping center, Coffee Shop also offers organic smoothies, juices and bites to add energy to your morning, as well as craft beer, cocktails and wine in the evening. Mi Oficina Computer Café is the place to get work done. Sip a batido de caramelo or traditional Mexican café de olla while taking advantage of Wi-Fi, fax services and 12 computers to rent. Running late to work? Grab a blended white mocha or a warm cappuccino at Java Detour’s drive-thru window.

Tea Geared toward the young and young at heart, Dainteas offers a collection of serious hats to wear at this traditional tea parlor while you sip from your cup and munch on tea scones and canapes.

Boba Tea T4 offers an extensive milk tea menu—think coffee, Earl Grey, roasted oolong and winter melon flavors— with slush, milkshake and meal options, too. At Splash Tea, order a specialty drink such as dirty horchata or chocolate pudding pie milk tea, or build your own, with the tea, milk and toppings of your choice. At the Concord location of Milk Tea Lab, a Bay Area institution, visitors enjoy tea and snack choices in an inclusive environment crafted for young people hanging out.

Coffee Shop


For more than 15 years, this neighborhood music venue has entertained with tunes, events and other festivities spanning from open mic to line dancing and salsa to DJ nights almost every night of the week.

variety of shops specializing in exceptional coffee and

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The Great Outdoors


With a scene-stealing mountain, appealing hiking and biking trails, and a pair of golf courses, Concord is just the ticket for those who love the sporting life.

Studio City

Take a Hike


he region’s top attraction for hikers—and anyone who loves the great outdoors—is Mount Diablo, which rises to a peak of 3,849 feet. On a clear day, from the summit you can see as far as the Farallon Islands off the coast of San Francisco, Mount Lassen in Shasta County and—with the aid of binoculars— Yosemite National Park’s Half Dome. Hikers will have plenty to choose from in this 20,000-acre state park. Trails of different lengths and degrees of difficulty wind among creeks, valleys and fields of wildflowers. For a leisurely hike, try the 0.7-mile Mary Bowerman Trail; a more strenuous option is the 6-mile Mount Diablo State Park Waterfall Loop Trail. Not to be missed is Rock City, which can be reached from the summit via a 5-mile trail, well worth a visit for its curious sandstone formations and inviting caves. Mount Diablo is also a favorite of cyclists in search of a scenic ride. The 23.5mile out-and-back trip to the summit is rewarding for both beginning and advanced riders.

Mount Diablo

Another popular outing is the 13.8-mile-long Contra Costa Canal Trail, a paved pathway suitable for hikers, bikers and equestrians. Running through central Contra Costa County, it connects to regional trails and intercepts local parks in Pleasant Hill, Walnut Creek and Concord. The Iron Horse Regional Trail, which begins in Concord and continues for some 30 miles to the city of Pleasanton, is wildly popular with hikers and cyclists (an estimated 1 million trips are made on it each year). Connecting residential and commercial areas, parks, and regional trails, the trail is expected to ultimately cover a distance of about 55 miles, connecting 12 cities from Alameda County to Contra Costa County. Lime Ridge Open Space features more than 1,200 acres of wildflower-filled open space and 25 miles of hiking trails. Note that the pristine expanse does not offer much shade, so plan accordingly.

From dance venues to yoga classes, Concord has your workout needs covered Funkmode is a popular studio specializing in hip-hop dance lessons and performance; it also offers classes in jazz/contemporary, tap, twerk and more. Learn the fine points of pole dancing and pole fitness in Spin Sity’s bright pink studio. Yoga practitioners of all fitness levels (including beginners) will enjoy Yoga Sol’s offerings, which include hot yoga, vinyasa flow and boot camps. Our Studio—a multipurpose workout space—features Zumba, yoga, Pilates, and toning and sculpting classes.


Fore! Check out Concord’s distinctive golf courses Diablo Creek Golf Course

Diablo Creek Golf Course is a lush 18-hole course featuring long fairways and water hazards. It also offers a well-stocked pro shop and Legends at Diablo Creek, a bar and grill where you can grab a brew and a bite while watching sports on TV or enjoying the occasional live music. For a quicker but equally challenging game, head over to Buchanan Fields Golf Course. Its nine-hole course offers a fun-for-all-levels experience, and don’t miss its pro shop for tee-time merch.



Three highly specialized gyms offer one-of-a-kind workouts UFC GYM An extension of the Ultimate Fighting Championship brand, this franchise features a free-weights area, a bag room and group classes in addition to its mixed martial arts programming (with plenty of offerings for kids). Visiting Champion-level UFC Gym members can enjoy the clean, open workout spaces, sauna and ArmBar Café at the Willows Shopping Center location, or novices can sign up for a free pass to begin their ultimate fitness journey.

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DIABLO ROCK GYM Scale new heights on the 11,000 square feet of climbing terrain, including more than 100 routes and 2,000 square feet of bouldering options for all ages and experience levels. Diablo Rock Gym has day passes as well as private classes for young climbers; gear is available for rent on-site. The gym also offers free weights and exercise equipment spaces, as well as CrossFit and group exercise classes. touchstone​

APEX MOVEMENT NORCAL Defy gravity at this popular parkour gym that also houses many of the awe-inspiring obstacles seen on NBC’s American Ninja Warrior (you too can beat that wall). With a focus that is more on movement and fun than muscle-building, APEX (Athletics, Play and EXercise) offers classes for youth and adults as well as open gym time; attendees ages 6 to 12 must complete three beginners classes before they are allowed to take part in the open gym sessions.

ROCK CLImBeR JeReMy YeE s manager of Concord’s Diablo Rock Gym, Jeremy Yee knows firsthand what’s so special about his fellow climbing enthusiasts. “Climbing is a challenging athletic endeavor, but it’s kind of playful at the same time,” he says. “People connect climbing with something they did for fun as kids, and I see how much they enjoy sharing this cool experience together.” At any given time, Diablo Rock Gym offers some 200 different climbs (among other workouts), and the benefits to climbers can be impressive. Physically, climbing helps with balance, strength and flexibility. Mentally, it requires intense focus and strategic thinking. “Your brain is constantly working to solve a certain sequence,” Yee says. “Climbing can also really test your ability to stay calm under pressure.” But best of all, Yee says, is the opportunity to engage with a special community of people who are passionate about the sport. “What really struck me when I started working in Concord was the friendliness here,” he says. “We’ve created a welcoming atmosphere at the gym, and people love it. We even have members who come by three times a day—once to work out, a second time to climb and a third time to hang out with friends.”


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Where to Sleep


Days Inn Concord

You'll find a room for every taste and budget

Hotels With Meeting Spaces

CROWNE PLAZA 45 John Glenn Drive 925-825-7700 Amenities: Fitness center, high-speed Wi-Fi, full-service restaurant and bar, heated indoor pool, on-site convenience store, pet-friendly rooms CLARION HOTEL OF CONCORD 1050 Burnett Ave. 480-719-7971 Amenities: Continental breakfast, high-speed Wi-Fi, fitness center, restaurant and lounge, outdoor pool BEST WESTERN HERITAGE INN 4600 Clayton Road 925-686-4466 Amenities: Continental breakfast, high-speed Wi-Fi, fitness center, outdoor pool, whirlpool tubs

Plate and Vine restaurant at Hilton Concord


Inns and Extended Stays AMERICAS BEST VALUE INN 3555 Clayton Road 925-682-1601 Amenities: Continental breakfast, high-speed Wi-Fi DAYS INN CONCORD 5370 Clayton Road 925-674-9400 Amenities: Daybreak breakfast, high-speed Wi-Fi, 24-hour juice and espresso bar, outdoor pool MOTEL 6 CONCORD 3606 Clayton Road 925-682-7850 Amenities: Complimentary morning coffee, high-speed Wi-Fi, outdoor pool, pet-friendly rooms PREMIER INNS CONCORD 1581 Concord Ave. 925-674-0888 Amenities: Complimentary coffee, game room, outdoor pool and hot tub, pet-friendly rooms, pillow-top beds STUDIO 6 CONCORD 1370 Monument Blvd. 925-827-8998 Amenities: Business center, complimentary coffee/tea, high-speed Wi-Fi, pet accommodations, outdoor pool

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L E F T T O R I G H T: H I LT O N ; C O U R T E S Y O F D AY S I N N

HILTON CONCORD 1970 Diamond Blvd. 925-827-2000 Amenities: Fitness center, full-service restaurant, heated outdoor pool, jogging track, high-speed Wi-Fi, technology lounge, whirlpool

Just 29 miles east of San Francisco, the road to Concord leads to something amazing. From a buzzworthy local food scene and premium shopping, to endless live music and wide, open spaces, adventure awaits at every turn.

925-685-1182 |

Plan Your Visit

NEARBY Oakland: 21 miles / 34 km San Francisco: 29 miles / 47 km Napa Valley: 32 miles / 51 km Sonoma: 43 miles / 68 km Livermore Valley: 21 miles / 34 km San Jose: 56 miles / 90 km

PUBLIC TRANSPORT Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART). Concord and North Concord stations. County Connection. Bus service throughout Contra Costa County.

BUCHANAN FIELD AIRPORT Concord’s airport offers commercial flight services by JetSuiteX to the Los Angeles area and Las Vegas on select days.

FLY IN Oakland International Airport (OAK). San Francisco International Airport (SFO). San Jose International Airport (SJC).


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! e m o c l e W

Concord Visitor Center Located in the heart of historic Todos Santos Plaza 2151 Salvio Street, Suite T, in Concord, California 925-685-1182 or email

When you reach the top of Mt. Diablo, you’ll feel like you’re on top of the world. From outdoor adventures to a tasty beer trail and great live music, a trip to Concord, California will feed your sense of adventure and nourish your soul.