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Napa, California. Imagine fertile hills covered with grape vines drenched in morning fog. Wineries galore and hot air balloons in the sky. The small city that lies 53 miles northeast of San Francisco encompasses all that and more.

Nearly half the adult locals in the city of Napa work in the wine industry, but it's not the only employer in town. Many residents of Central Napa work in the fields of hospitality, education, technology and tourism. Other major employers in Napa include Queen of the Valley Medical Center, Owens Corning and Walmart.

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Rent Trends

As of September 2017, the average apartment rent in Napa, CA is $934 for a studio, $1,240 for one bedroom, $1,819 for two bedrooms, and $2,940 for three bedrooms. Apartment rent in Napa has increased by 2.8% in the past year.

Beds
Avg Sq Ft
Avg Rent
Studio
438
$934
1 BR
480
$1,240
2 BR
865
$1,819
3 BR
1,640
$2,940
Beds
Avg Sq Ft
Avg Rent

Ratings

80 Walk Score® Very Walkable
0 Transit Score® Minimal Transit
85 Bike Score® Very Bikeable

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Restaurants

There is not a dedicated restaurant district in Napa, but there are plenty of places to enjoy good meals at Oxbow Market center and other sites around town. In the Central Napa neighborhood, look for restaurants on Main Street, Lincoln Avenue, Clinton Street and Jefferson Avenue.

Start the day with a mug of Peet's coffee and a hearty American breakfast of chicken fried steak and eggs at Butter Cream Bakery & Diner. More in the mood for oven fresh pastry? Take home a box of their famous maple bars or decadent coconut donuts. Find the classic pink-and-white striped 1940s style eatery at 2297 Jefferson Street near the corner of I Street.

Walk into the Kitchen Door and forget everything you thought you knew about cream of mushroom soup. The chef here knows his local and sourced morels, mousserons and porcini, and uses them to craft an award-winning soup that keeps the locals coming back for more. Find Kitchen Door restaurant tucked away at the back of the Oxbow Market Center at 610 1st Street in Central Napa.

Napa Valley Bistro presents California Cuisine at its finest. The menu includes a Sonoma lamb burger piled with rosemary and feta cheese on a brioche bun. Find this Central Napa omnivore favorite at 975 Clinton Street, just off Main.

For Napa nightlife, drop by Silo's Wine Bar & Jazz Club at 530 Main Street in the historic Napa Mill. Head toward the river and follow your ears, because the intimate venue presents loud, live music most nights of the year. The kitchen at Silo's serves a small but satisfying menu of inspired items like bruschetta with basil-marinated tomatoes and smoked salmon with capers on a sweet corn pancake. If you're up for an adult dessert, try the signature chocolate martini. The venue is wheelchair accessible and provides ample off-street parking.

History

Central Napa used to be inhabited by elk, grizzlies, mountain lions and indigenous people. Once missionaries “discovered” the Napa Valley in the 1820s, it didn't take long for American farmers to follow them in droves. When the California Gold Rush was in full swing, many men and the women who supported them moved westward to try their luck in the Napa Valley.

Local legend has it that an early settler by the name of George Yount planted the first grape vines in Napa Valley in 1864. In 1880, the Napa Valley Opera House presented its first live performance: a production of Gilbert and Sullivan's hilarious musical, H.M.S. Pinafore. The acoustically-perfect entertainment venue was a favorite of Napans and San Franciscans for decades. The Opera House weathered fire, flood, Prohibition and disrepair. Reopened in 2003 after a $13-million restoration, the Napa Valley Opera House is the most elegant nightspot in town.

Transportation

You can bike just about anywhere in Central Napa. Brown Street, Hayes Street, Seminary Street and E Street are bicycle-friendly with clearly marked lanes.In-town bus fare on VINE is $1.50 one way or $5 for a 24-hour pass.

There are more private car services and limousine rentals in Napa than there are taxi companies, so it isn't easy to hail a taxi. Ask for a “cab” in Napa, and someone will probably hand you a bottle of red wine. If you call for a taxi, expect to pay around $45 an hour for ride service.Parking can be tricky in central and downtown Napa.

If you find a parking spot on the street, it's free. There are no parking meters. City parking facilities are free, too, but their spaces come with a time limit.

Uber is available in Central Napa. With your app you can access UberX, UberBLACK and UberSUV private ride service.

Cost

The price for a one-bedroom apartment in Central Napa averages to $1,095. A gallon of gas here costs around 10 percent more than the national average. A draft beer will cost you $5 to $8, and a plate of tapas will cost you $10.

In-town bus fare on VINE costs $1.50 one way or $5 for a 24-hour pass. If you call for a taxi, expect to pay around $45 an hour.

Overall, the cost of living runs about 21 percent higher in Napa than in most other parts of the country.

Shopping

The Fatted Calf butcher shop and charcuterie sells locally grown grass-fed beef and lamb, fragrant Italian cheeses, prosciutto sliced to order and everything else a world class deli offers. Let an expert at Oxbow Cheese & Wine Merchant explain which cheese pairs with which wine, and why. They will let you sample almost anything in the store before you buy.

Napans who appreciate an excellent cup of coffee buy their beans, grinders, brewing accessories and mugs at Ritual Roasters. When they want a good read, they head to Standard News, Books & Sundries. Standard sells a range of Bay Area publications including the Napa Valley Register, San Francisco Chronicle, Sacramento Bee and Press Democrat. They also carry the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and a selection of foreign newspapers.

All of these stores and more are located at Oxbow Public Market, between 610 and 644 First Street.

For a more typical shopping experience, head west to Bel Aire Plaza on Trancas Street south of Jefferson. There you will find Whole Foods, Trader Joe's. Cost Plus World Market, Peet's Coffee, Target and Pet Food Express. Go north on Trancas to find Safeway, Lucky and Albertsons supermarkets.

A 10-minute drive brings you to Major Family Farm, a family store attached to a farm. Several farmers markets lie nearby.

Parks

Do some people watching, read a book, feed the ducks on the banks of the Napa River or simply enjoy an afternoon siesta at Veterans Memorial Park. The park presents a summer concert series from June through August every year. Veterans Memorial Park is located at Main and Third streets and admission is free.

Fuller Park offers a huge playground for kids, a perimeter jogging track, horseshoe pits, picnic facilities and lots of clean restrooms. The little neighborhood park at the intersection of Jefferson and Oak is one of the oldest and friendliest in Central Napa.

The Bottle Rock music festival is a relatively new tradition in the town of Napa. Held over the course of three days in May, the Bottle Rock stage has presented national acts including Weezer, The Cure, Jackson Browne, Cake, Train and De La Soul as well as local favorites Grass Child, Trebuchet and Charlie Musselwhite.

To run with your dog at an off-leash park, go south on First Street over the freeway. Shortly after First Street becomes Browns Valley Road, you'll see Westwood Hills Park on the left.

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Apartments for Rent in Central Napa, Napa, CA

Napa, California. Imagine fertile hills covered with grape vines drenched in morning fog. Wineries galore and hot air balloons in the sky. The small city that lies 53 miles northeast of San Francisco encompasses all that and more.

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