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Take a virtual adventure for Memorial Day weekend


SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (KRON) – As the Bay Area continues to shelter in place, it’s anything but the typical Memorial Day weekend. But just because you are home, doesn’t mean you can’t feel like you gone on an adventure. Travel enthusiast Dana Rebmann joins KRON4.

For most folks, Memorial Day weekend has always served as the un-official kickoff of summer. This year things are different; modern technology like live streams and webcams is helping us get creative, reminding us about great ones in our backyard we may have forgotten about, and introducing us to new spots to love.


Let’s head to wine country first. Charlie’s Acres is a non-profit farm animal sanctuary in Sonoma. Tours were an essential source of income; when the pandemic hit they took them virtual.

Along with filling their Facebook feed with smile inducing animal shots and virtual farm tours, the Sonoma farm animals are now making guest appearances on video conference calls. Think everything from school groups to law firms re booking quality time with them. Charlie’s Acres ran Mother’s Day tours for $30 per computer. And now folks from all around the world are visiting via Airbnb tours.. and these animals are gaining fans quickly.


Because wine country is so well-known for its vineyards so we should one of those too.

If you’ve ever wondered if counting sheep works. Shafer Vineyards in Napa is offering the perfect way to find out. In the spring, the herd move in to mow the cover crop in the vineyards. Shafer’s repeated an hour worth of footage to give us six hours of sheep serenity on YouTube. Sound up on this one!

Pier 39

Pier 39 is closed but you can still catch a glimpse of the sea lions thanks to the webcam. You also often get bonus shots of Alcatraz and the Golden Gate Bridge, so that’s a nice perk.

Pier 39 is arguably the most popular spot to see sea lions in San Francisco, but if you are lucky, you might also spot them on or around the Farallon Islands.

Off the Coast of San Francisco

Located about 30 miles off the coast of San Francisco, the Farallon Islands National Wildlife Refuge isn’t ever open to the public, but the California Academy of Sciences’ offers a webcam for those interested in a rare view. The camera moves around quite a bit, so you never know what you might see. A variety of mammals and seabirds frequent the islands.

Cal Falcons

Off to the East Bay — Say hello to Poppy, Sequoia and Redwood.

UC Berkeley’s Campanile has been the nesting site for a pair of Peregrine Falcons since late 2016. Thanks to the webcams you can peek at growing triplets that hatched in April, whenever the mood strikes.

And great highlights of the falcons’ childhood are posted on the Cal Falcons YouTube channel. Two boys and a girl; there was a contest to name the new falcons. Inspiration for the winner comes from California’s state flower and tree.

Oakland Zoo Webcams

And for one last animal fix, the Oakland Zoo offers four webcams that give you the opportunity to check in on everything from elephants, to bears, and condors.

So plenty to keep you busy, without leaving home.

For more about Dana’s adventures and writing, follow her on Instagram @danarebmann and Twitter @drebmann. You can also visit her website.

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