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One of the first Spanish land grants in California, the small city of Bellflower started out as ranching land for former members of the military and progressed over the next two centuries to become a thriving neighborhood that welcomes neighbors from the surrounding 100-mile territory for shopping and commerce.
With around 75,000 people on just over six square miles of land, Bellflower is bordered by Downey, Norwalk and Cerritos, Lakewood, Long Beach and Paramount. Expect to enjoy a thriving community with a small-town feel but big-city amenities.
As of October 2017, the average apartment rent in Bellflower, CA is $924 for a studio, $1,138 for one bedroom, $1,502 for two bedrooms, and $1,937 for three bedrooms. Apartment rent in Bellflower has increased by 4.1% in the past year.
Head to the intersection of Bellflower Boulevard and Alondra Boulevard to find the center of the entertainment and food district in this neighborhood, with cuisine options ranging from basic American to international inspiration and a focus on fusion foods. Try KooKoo Grill Teriyaki on Woodruff Avenue for a fusion of Asian, Japanese and Mexican cuisines, popular with locals both for its dine-in menu and takeout service. Try the signature KooKoo Balls, a meat and sauce filling surrounded by a rice and sesame seed shell or the similar KooKoo Egg Rolls, another signature dish pairing a meat and sauce filling with an egg roll exterior. For breakfast options, try The Nest on Alondra Boulevard. Locals love waking up to the casual, friendly atmosphere in this small restaurant where the simple menu ranges from bacon waffles and fried egg sandwiches to scrambled eggs, breakfast poutine and creamy grits. Enjoy Italian recipes passed down from a Sicilian great-great-great grandmother at Marino's Italian Restaurant on Bellflower Boulevard, a family-style restaurant with a candlelit ambiance. Locals recommend the artichoke hearts as a starter, with entrees ranging from Sicilian pizza to spaghetti, ravioli and eggplant parmigiana. Stay on Bellflower Boulevard as evening falls to find a wide range of sports bars, karaoke joints and dive bars. Try The Midway Bar for a laid-back atmosphere with a juke box, Bottoms Up Bar for karaoke and a bikini bar, or Irish Tower when you're in the mood to watch some sports. Spike's Sports Bar & Grill doubles up as a sports bar and dance club, while Cocktails Anyone offers venues to dance the night away. For live musical and theater performances, head to the William and Jane Bristol Civic Auditorium.
The name "Bellflower" derives from the "Belle Fleur" apple, which once grew abundantly in local orchards in this area. The neighborhood was settled by dairy farmers, mostly Dutch but also Japanese and Portuguese, and became the milk production center for Southern California. Soaring prices after World War II caused many of these farmers to move east, transforming what was once farmland into housing for the growing middle-class population working in skilled and technological jobs.
Visit the County of Los Angeles Fire Museum on Flora Vista Street to view a collection of historical fire trucks as well as props used in various television shows and movies. Just to the north of the neighborhood, across Interstate 105, watch for the Columbia Memorial Space Center, a small space and science museum. At Halloween, plan to enjoy the Don't Stop the Music Festival, featuring two days of music from over 40 DJs.
At six square miles in size, Bellflower residents rely on personal vehicles and public transportation to navigate the neighborhood. Use the Bellflower Bus fixed-route systems to travel from the Bellflower Transit Center to the outskirts of the neighborhood, or make use of Bellflower Dial-A-Ride if you are handicapped or over 55 years of age. Metro services take you east or west from Rosencrans Avenue or Alondra Boulevard, while Long Beach Transit services generally head from Alondra Boulevard to the north or south.
Find the Artesia Freeway, otherwise known as State Route 91, passing east to west through the south of the neighborhood, while the San Gabriel River Freeway, also known as Interstate 605, runs to the east of Bellflower, and the Century Freeway, or Interstate 105, travels along the north border of the city.
Uber covers the whole of Los Angeles, while several airport shuttles and taxi services also operate in the Bellflower neighborhood. Walking and biking are relatively easy in the downtown portion of the city but elsewhere, expect long travel times when not using your personal vehicle. The city controls street parking on the crowded city streets with rules, regulations and permits.
Expect a cost of living in Bellflower that approximates the California average. The cost to reach the Bellflower city center is $0.50, while the average rental cost for a one-bedroom apartment sits at $1,126. The average price for a pint of beer in Bellflower is just over $9, while the price per gallon of gasoline costs you around 11.6 percent more than the national average.
Stroll along Bellflower Boulevard and the neighboring Lakewood Boulevard to find plenty of chain stores and large outlets, as well as a great selection of specialty and boutique stores.
Head to Metropolis Comics for a wide range of old and new comic books and an annual Free Comic Book Day, or start a new model railroad hobby at RailMaster Hobbies. Visit Practical Magicka for essential oils, candles and incense. For women's clothing, jewelry and accessories, try the Rag Reveil Boutique, where the focus is on putting together a complete outfit.
For groceries, stop in at Ralphs on Bellflower Boulevard or try Superior Grocers on Lakewood Boulevard. Stater Bros. Markets also includes a deli, while Smart & Final caters to bargain hunters. Visit the Bellflower Farmer's Market on Oak and Clark Streets for fresh produce, breads and cheeses.
Several small parks dot the neighborhood of Bellflower. Families enjoy T. Mayne Thompson Park due to its programs for kids, indoor basketball court, baseball diamonds and outdoor pool with diving board, as well as a playground. Alternatively, try Pirate Park for a themed playground that includes a pirate ship, fort and climbing bridge.
Walk your dog along the San Gabriel River Trail, a multi-use trail alongside the water. Joggers and runners prefer Simms Park, where cardio-aerobic classes take place twice a week, alongside basketball and baseball facilities and picnic areas once you finish exercising.
The 20-acre Ruth R. Caruthers Park provides lighted baseball and softball fields, a wading pool, an equestrian path and a 2.5-mile hike alongside barbecue braziers, tetherball courts and the Carpenter House Museums.
Apartments for Rent Under $800 in Bellflower, CA
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