Day camps in the Berkeley/Oakland/Emeryville/Albany/El Cerrito area

and residential camps from Northern California (& beyond)

by Tom Lent


How to submit new and updated camp listings

Your corrections, feedback and appreciations will be gratefully accepted. Do you know of a new camp that I don’t have listed or found that one here has shut down? Let me know and I’ll update when I can.

There is no fee for listing. This is just a labor of love. Just make it easy for me and follow the steps below and I’ll be happy to list your camp. Note that I only list day camps with locations in the Berkeley/Oakland/Emeryville/Albany/El Cerrito area, (concentrating on Berkeley and the northern end of Oakland) and overnight resident camps primarily from around Northern California but including a few from farther afield if they are of particular unique interest to California kids.

If you are interested in listing a day camp that does not have a location in the inner East Bay (Berkeley/Oakland/Emeryville/Albany/El Cerrito), please refer to the resources in my Summer Camp Guide where you’ll find lots of recommendations for listing services that cover the entire bay area and beyond that will be good places to list your camp.

If you are updating an existing camp listing, and there are substantial changes, just copy the existing listing in to your word processor, make the changes and send it back to me. If the listing doesn’t have the ratio of campers to counselors (or teachers), add it if you can.

If you are submitting a new camp listing, please use one of the sample listings below as a model and provide the information for the camp in this form. Note the key to listings that explains codes and listings included after the samples. Providing me the information in this form will greatly ease my job and increase the chances that I can update the site with the listing promptly.

Don’t juice it up too much. This is a listing, not an ad. Just stick to the facts. Resist the temptation to use exclamation points! :-)  Then send it to me at: Thanks! -Tom

A note about reviews: Reviews are based upon surveys I did of parents at Berkwood Hedge School from their experiences during the summers of 1995 through 2001 so are reasonably impartial. I have gotten many requests to publish reviews for other camps, but as my son has grown up I am no longer in a community of parents from whom I can easily get reviews and I do not have the time to collect a good sample of reviews in another nor to do a fair job of evaluating impartiality. Hence I have chosen not to add any further reviews to the listings.

Sample day camp listing:

City Camp: (*WC, *SC) Urban explorer camp based at Ohlone Park in Berkeley and at the SF Ferry Building in San Francisco. Campers take a field trip every day, walking or taking BART, buses, cable cars and ferries to a wide range of East Bay and SF locations, learning to read maps, look for landmarks, and safely explore the city along the way. Not reviewed.

Age 5-12 (CIT 13), Dates 2 wk sessions 7/12-8/20 plus winter and spring camps, Time 9-4 (8-6) Ratio 6:1, Cost $250/wk ($100), multi-session and sibling discounts, Deadline FCFS

Info 847-7123 (12)


Sample residential camp listing:

Sierra Friends Camp & Teen Leadership Camp: Cabin camp in the Sierras. Experience rooted in Quaker values of compassion for oneself, others, and the natural world.  Arts and drama activities, non-competitive sports and games, fun and physical daily chores, sharing music, stories and reflection around campfires, swimming in the pond and the nearby Yuba River. Plus two- to three-night age appropriate hiking and camping trips to develop self-confidence through physical challenge, appreciation of nature and spirit, skills in camping and sustainable living, cooperation and teamwork. 

Age: 9-14,15-16 for TLC, Dates 2 wk sessions 7/2-30, Cost $6-700/wk, Discounts, scholarships and work grant opportunities, Ratio 4:1 Deadline FCFS,

Info: 530-273-3183 (12)


Key to listings:

Age: Grades listed instead of ages usually means the program is for kids entering those grades in the coming fall (CIT indicates the camp has a Counselor In Training program. A number after CIT indicates the minimum age or entering grade for CIT participants.

Dates: Length of sessions and dates they are scheduled. (*WC, *SC): *WC means the program has a winter camp over the end of year holiday period. *SC means the program has a spring camp over the Easter week break.
Time: Times in parenthesis are for extended care.

Ratio: Camper to counselor ratio
Cost: To make comparison easier, unless otherwise stated, all listed costs are per week, even if sessions are multi-week, unless otherwise noted. Discounts & scholarships: Some organizations have reduced rates for early registration, for members, for multiple weeks, for multiple kids in one family, etc. Many programs have scholarships for limited income families.

Deadline: Deadline for applications. If the camp usually fills be a certain time indicate that (“usually fills by mid April”). FCFS means “first come first served” rolling admissions with no fixed closing date.

Info: Please list both a phone number and a website.

The parenthetic number at the end is the year that the information is up to date for (“06” means summer of 2006)


Read about Day Camps

Read about Overnight Resident Camps

Return to the Summer Camp Guide for more information about this website and for links to other camp listing websites

Return to Tom Lent’s Information Center

Comments, new listings or updates? E-mail them to me: