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Situated along the waterfront, you will find Benicia California tucked away amidst the marshes of the northern coast of San Francisco Bay. Located 35 miles from San Francisco and 60 miles from Sacramento, most of the residents are white collar workers who commute to these cities. The upper class nature of the residents has given rise to a well-developed retail area downtown consisting of many high-end boutiques, art galleries, and spas. Residents also enjoy the hundreds of acres of wilderness preserves around the city, as well as the close proximity to wineries of the famed Napa Valley.
As of October 2017, the average apartment rent in Benicia, CA is $1,395 for a studio, $1,579 for one bedroom, $1,813 for two bedrooms, and $1,817 for three bedrooms. Apartment rent in Benicia has increased by 5.6% in the past year.
In Benicia, you will find a mix of both fine dining establishments and carry out restaurants, which feature many different types of cuisine. At The Workshop you can get authentic Creole food and many people go for the po' boy sandwiches and bowls of gumbo. Being located next to a tackle shop and only consisting of a walk up window and a few tables, you may not give a second thought to grabbing food here, but once you do, it will become one of your favorite spots. Don't be turned off by the limited menu options because this establishment values quality over quantity and the cooks craft each dish with attention and detail.
You can also grab a quick bite at Got Plate Lunch, which sells the most authentic Hawaiian food in the area prepared with fresh local seafood. As the name suggests, the restaurant specializes in Hawaiian plate lunches and the chicken katsu paired with rice and macaroni salad is a favorite. You can pick up food from the restaurant or from the food truck, which is parked in different locations throughout town on different days of the week. When locals drive through town and see the truck in a parking lot, they take it as a sign that it's time to stop and have lunch.
Benicia has a collection of bars and pubs for nightlife options, such as The Rellik Tavern. People come here to listen to live music and grab a drink. The comfortable seating, low noise level and attentive staff make this place an ideal spot to socialize and catch up with friends. You can also order plates of tapas to share and pass around the table. The small venue makes for an intimate setting, but on nights with popular bands be sure to arrive early as the tavern rapidly reaches capacity.
Benicia was founded in 1847 on land purchased from General Vallejo, who had obtained it through a land grant from the Mexican government. For a brief period between 1853 and 1854, the city served as the capital of California. The economy was built largely on military operations, as the Benicia Arsenal was the largest storehouse for weapons and ammunition on the West Coast.
The town saw major changes in the 1960's with the closing of the arsenal. The opening of the Benicia-Martinez Bridge led the city to become a suburb of San Francisco and the populace shifted to white collar workers. Today the arsenal has been converted into retail space and art galleries, and has become a major attraction in the city.
Most people use the extensive bus system to get around Benicia. Within the city, you can use the Soltrans buses to access most areas. The downtown contains many of the points of interest and buses run through it frequently. Once you get off the bus downtown, you can easily and safely walk around because of the broad sidewalks and crosswalks. The many bike lanes and paths make biking a viable option as well. If you drive your car downtown, you will find plenty of free parking on the streets and in public lots. These methods will likely be your preferred way of getting around because only a few taxi companies operate in the area and Uber does not run in Benicia.
You will find accessing nearby cities just as easy. To get to Sacramento, just ride the bus to Fairfield and then board the Capital Corridor train. Ferries from Benicia carry passengers to San Francisco. Interstates 80 and 680 can be accessed easily, transporting you to several cities in under an hour, including Sacramento, San Francisco, and Oakland.
Like any town directly on the water, living expenses tend to be higher and the cost of living in Benicia is 20 percent higher than in Sacramento. The average rental rate for a one bedroom apartment is $1430 per month and gas prices stay about 10 percent higher than the national average. A pint of beer at a local bar costs around $6. Getting to Sacramento using a combination of the Soltrans bus and Capital Corridor train will cost 25 dollars.
Several specialty and high-end stores can be found throughout downtown Benicia, the major shopping area in the town. Many women shop for outfits for special occasions at Piccolo, a high-end boutique. The shop features a variety of unique dresses and you can be sure that if you buy a gown here, no one else will be wearing it at the party. The owner of the store works there daily and always assists shoppers in finding the perfect dress. You will appreciate the honest and frank input from the staff, which ensures that you show up to the occasion looking your best.
If you want to spend a little less for an outfit, check out Rags to Riches. This consignment boutique sells designer handbags and dresses for discount prices. With a selection of shoes and jewelry as well, you can throw together an entire outfit that costs much less than it looks. While you are there, browse through the selection of antiques and furniture to find some new decor for your home.
Most people shop for groceries at Safeway or Raley's, the two major supermarkets in the area. A farmers market runs April through October and sells local produce, baked goods, and crafts. People come here not only to buy goods, but also to socialize and listen to live music.
Several parks encompass sections of the waterfront and natural areas providing many recreational opportunities. The largest of these is Benicia State Recreation area, a sprawling complex that spans 400 acres. People come here to bike, jog and walk on the several miles of trails that run through the park. Leashed dogs are welcome on the trails as well.
The park is also an ecological treasure home to many rare plants and animals. Wildlife enthusiasts frequent the area to catch a glimpse of endangered California clapper rails and salt marsh harvest mice. Informational displays around the park will teach you all about the native wildlife and more than 250 species of native plants grow in the botanical gardens within the park. In order to protect the integrity of the natural areas, there are no courts or fields for sporting activities. Admission to the park does not cost, but there is a five dollar fee to park.
Apartments for Rent Under $600 in Benicia, CA
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