Grab the BART
from wherever you are (that is, unless you're one of those poor bastards
who owns a car
) and get off at the Downtown Berkeley
stop. Walk past Games of Berkeley on the other side of the intersection, and through a bit of a nature reserve on the college campus
. Walk through historic Spraul Plaza
, and Telegraph Ave will be right there.
Street vendors crowd the avenue, catching the tourists and selling anything from henna tattoos, to amazing tie-dyed clothing, to original artwork. There’s no shortage of head shops here, proudly dispensing great and often artful drug paraphernalia in all shapes, sizes, and forms. Most of these shops also sell random shit like bondage gear, sex toys, clever t-shirts and bumper stickers, and anything alternative and shocking. These shops are also decent places to get tattoo and piercing work done. Make sure to check out Big Al’s, they’ve got a killer two-for-one deal on pipes.
Other places of interest include Amoeba Records and Rasputin for all of your hard-to-find esoteric music needs – good for finding cheap as dirt used CDs and LPs. At one intersection, there’s a two story glass front building with a bunch of preppy Cal clothes in it. Walk down the stairs to the basement to find T-Shirt Orgy, for some kick ass, original, and mostly offensive t-shirts. There’s also a bunch of other neat crap on that street.
If nothing else, Telegraph is a place to see whatever culture Berkeley might have or might have once had and a good place to spend your money on crazy shit. At the front desk of any store or establishment there will be a collection of pamphlets, flyers, and cards. Those are a good way to pick up on the events and concerts going on in the Berkeley area.