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About the Walnut Creek Downtown Neighborhood in Walnut Creek, California

Nestled in the shadow of Mt. Diablo, Walnut Creek is Contra Costa’s leading cultural and commercial center. With miles of hiking trail and scenic vistas, the city is a nature lover’s paradise and a cultural hub. Visitors to Walnut Creek can enjoy galleries, theaters, and culinary delights. Here are the top ten things to see and do in Walnut Creek. Downtown Walnut Creek has something for every shopper. From unique jewelry to items for your four-legged companion, downtown is the place to go. Stores range from high-end boutiques to popular clothing stores. Even if you are not looking to buy, downtown’s picturesque, tree-lined streets make it the perfect spot to spend a few hours window shopping. The main roads in the area are S California Boulevard, Civic Drive, and N Main Street.

Things to Do in Walnut Creek Downtown

Walnut Creek Downtown is blessed with an abundance of fun attractions for residents and visitors to enjoy. Here’s a short list of our favorites:

Lesher Center for the Arts | 1601 Civic Drive, Walnut Creek, California 94596, United States

Since its opening in October 1990, the Lesher Center for the Arts has had a tremendous impact on the art community of Walnut Creek. What started in 1967 as the Nuthouse, a performance and gallery complex, was extended to its current $21 million facility. Today, the Lesher Center has 900 establishments per year and hosts 350,000 visitors every year. Owned and operated by the City of Walnut Creek, California, this local cultural hub features three theaters, the Bedford Art Gallery, and excellent dining options around the Centre. The Lesher Center for the Arts is a great location for corporate and private activities, with free WiFi throughout the building and plenty of drinks and dining options available. The Lesher Center for the Arts offers exceptional service and great experience, whether you want to take part in a show or host a meeting.

Walnut Creek on Ice | 1365 Civic Drive, Walnut Creek, California 94596, United States

Get your groove on a pair of ice skates at Walnut Creek on Ice, brought to you by the Walnut Creek Chamber of Commerce & Visitors Bureau and Walnut Creek Downtown. They’re celebrating our 11th season in Civic Park, and you’re invited to join us in the fun. Guests will enjoy skating over 8,000 sq. ft. Ft. Ice. Enjoy the ice, rain or shine that the tent structure partially covers the ice and the best ‘sound & light’ experience on the ice.

Broadway Plaza | 1275 Broadway Plaza, Walnut Creek, California 94596, United States

Located in Walnut Creek, CA, Broadway Plaza is an open-air shopping centre, home to many fine retailers and restaurants. This upscale center has 80 specialty shops, including Nordstrom, Macy’s, Apple and Lululemon. You’ll also find a variety of restaurants, such as True Food Kitchen, Boudin and P.F. It’s Chang. It’s also home to the Industrious coworking space. Come and see why Broadway Plaza was voted “Best Shopping Center” in Diablo Magazine’s “Best of the East Bay” issue.

Montecatini Ristorante1528 Civic Drive, Walnut Creek, California 94596, United States

The opening day of Montecatini was October 17, 1989, the day of the Loma Prieta earthquake in California. Since then, Montecatini Ristorante has become a place of authentic Italian dining experience in Walnut Creek, California. All their dishes are carefully prepared with the finest and freshest ingredients. Their  pastas and appetizers are served hot pipes from our kitchen to your table. Montecatini has received numerous awards throughout its 31 years history and is currently the 2020 Best Italian Restaurant in SF East Bay by Diablo Magazine, and Best Pasta voted by Walnut Creek Magazine, and Wine Spectator’s 2020 Award of Excellence for have one of the “Most Outstanding Restaurant Wine Lists in the World”.

Walnut Creek Farmers’ Market (by CCCFM)1799 Locust Street, Walnut Creek, California 94596, United States

Contra Costa Certified Farmers Markets were established in 1982, to provide farmers’ markets in the communities of Walnut Creek and Orinda. They are a 501(c)5 not for profit organization. CCCFM continues to embrace its original vision of supporting small family farms and educating people about the benefits of eating healthy food. They have enjoyed the many years of serving the community and watching the farmer’s markets grow. They encourage everyone to continue to support local farmers, food producers and the markets we operate.

Living in Walnut Creek Downtown

Residents of Walnut Creek Downtown are blessed to live in an area full of nature while also being quite close to city life.  There is never a shortage of coffee shops, parks or shopping centers to enjoy within a five-minute drive of Walnut Creek. Residents are also able to enjoy a rich spiritual life at the following houses of worship:

Open Table Church | 1375 Civic Drive, Walnut Creek, California 94596, United States

Open Table Church is  a non-denominational church community helping people know and follow Jesus. They do this by helping people connect, grow, and serve. They provide fun, age-appropriate classes for your kids to learn more about Jesus. Each class partners with parents in the spiritual formation of their kids through worship and learning experiences.

Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church1924 Trinity Avenue, Walnut Creek, California 94596, United States

The Mission: A Christ centered community journeying together on our path of salvation.

The Vision: We are the continuation of the New testament Church born in Jerusalem on the day of Pentecost, focusing on building a genuine loving relationship with Jesus Christ and one another.

St Paul’s Episcopal Church1924 Trinity Avenue, Walnut Creek, California 94596, United States

They are an Episcopal parish church in the Diocese of California, and members of the Anglican Communion in the United States, part of the third largest group of Christians in the world. They follow the teachings of Jesus Christ and have a legacy of inclusion. They share God’s love for every human being, regardless of sexual identity or orientation.

Walnut Creek Presbyterian Church1801 Lacassie Avenue, Walnut Creek, California 94596, United States

Walnut Creek Presbyterian Church is a community united in Christ worshipping and serving together. They live in Christ as evidenced by their reliance on prayer and scripture. Their members grow deeper in their faith. They desire to be a strong community reaching the unchurched with the Gospel, and in doing so, seeing God transform their lives, their neighbors, and our world.

St Mary’s Church | 2039 Mt Diablo Boulevard, Walnut Creek, California 94596, United States

Saint Mary of the Immaculate Conception Catholic Church is a community of diverse and committed Christians, united by faith, pursuing spiritual growth and taking responsibility for the spiritual, social and educational needs of their parishioners and community as well as others. As a parish family they welcome and encourage authentic worship and devoted stewardship to joyfully celebrate and enrich our Faith.

Parks, Schools & Other Points of Interest in Walnut Creek Downtown

Walnut Creek Downtown is also home to some amazing parks, schools, public libraries and schools for its citizens to enjoy.  These facilities are all world-class, beautifully maintained and clean so residents of surrounding communities often visit to enjoy them.  Here’s a short list all located in Walnut Creek Downtown: 

Civic Park | 1375 Civic Drive, Walnut Creek, California 94596, United States

This multidimensional park is connected to the Iron Horse Trail and the Creek Walk. Community center with senior programs, gazebo, Civic Arts Studios, Park Place and Assembly Hall, all programmed through ARCS. Civic Park is also home to Piece’s Bufano Hand. There are also habitat gardens in the park. Enter the parking lot via Civic Drive and cross the orange wood and metal bridge to the left. The habitat gardens are located between the Iron Horse Trail and the ball field.

Originally designed by John Northmore Roberts, the habitat gardens were installed by LandArt in 1996. In 1999, the City hired consultant Dann McCright and the Lindsay Wildlife Museum to oversee the development of habitat gardens. Since then, the gardens have become a virtual oasis for more than 25 species of butterfly and 130 species of native Californian plants.

Walnut Creek Library – Contra Costa County Library1644 N Broadway, Walnut Creek, California 94596, United States

The Walnut Creek Library opened on July 17, 2010. Over 8,500 people visited the first day, over 15,000 in the first week! The Library Foundation has donated more than $5.2 million to build a new library and continues to raise funds for the library’s collections, programs and materials. The Friends of the Walnut Creek Library operates a bookstore in the new Walnut Creek Library, which is open during library hours. Books can be donated at the drop of the book on the east side of the library.

Walnut Creek Christian Academy2336 Buena Vista Avenue, Walnut Creek, California 94597, United States

Over the years, thousands of students have benefited from their 8th grade preschool programs. Many of their graduates go to their sister school, Berean Christian High School, and then to colleges or universities such as the University of California at Berkeley, Master’s College, and BIOLA.

Their class sizes are small, ensuring the individual attention needed to help each child succeed and giving them the opportunity to nurture each child in a safe environment. They have the privilege of partnering with their parents as an extension of their home. Their current enrolment is over 200 students.

Howe Homestead Park | 2950 Walnut Boulevard, Walnut Creek, California 94596, United States

Just a short walk from downtown, you will find Howe Homestead Park and western access to Shell Ridge. Crossing the old stone bridge from the Howe Homestead parking lot, one gets an impression of the area as it appeared in the late 1930’s. Hikers can start on the Kovar Trail and walk 10 miles to the crest of Mount Diablo. A small picnic area is available on a first-come, first-serve basis and a toilet is located in the central part of the park. The park is the former home of James Howe, a correspondent for Associated Press from the early 20th century. Born in Kansas, he traveled the world and reported on events such as the San Francisco earthquake of 1906 and World War I, and interviewed many of the world’s influential people, including Stalin, King George V, and Gandhi. After he retired to Walnut Creek in 1935, he had the house remodeled and his estate established. He was a winemaker, a pigeon breeder, a nut grower, a gourmet, and a collector.

St Mary School | 1158 Bont Lane, Walnut Creek, California 94596, United States

St. Mary’s School is a TK through 8th grade Catholic elementary school located in Walnut Creek, CA. The school was founded in 1960 by the Sisters of Providence to provide a rich tradition of educating future leaders. This tradition continues with the support of the St. Mary School community, where students form their moral compass, achieve their highest academic potential, and serve others to create a better world.

Map From City Center to Our Location