You can see from the inset image from the course map that the finish line is very close to the start, which makes for easy logistics. Two hotels, the Oakland Marriott (official race hotel and site of the expo) and the Courtyard are only two blocks from the race start.
For Bay Area runners, the Oakland City Center-12th Street BART station makes for easy transit access, far easier than driving and parking, considering the road closures necessary to conduct the race.
Oakland's restored Beaux Arts City Hall is opposite the start of the race. Note the beautiful oak tree in front of the building. It puts the "oak" in Oakland.
One of the best newsstands I know of anywhere is the venerable DeLauer's on Broadway.
|The Cathedral Building on Broadway|
Old Oakland, an area of restored Victorians, and now thriving with restaurants, shops, offices, and condos, is slightly to the south of the race start and west of Broadway, while bustling Chinatown is immediately east of Broadway.
Oakland Marathon neighborhood tour - navigational links:
Backward to: The "prequel" (the original marathon)
Forward to: Uptown
Oakland Marathon website