5.1 out of 10


38.0262733965136 -122.027878422534
Great for
  • Internet Access
  • Safe & Sound
  • Clean & Green
  • Cost of Living
  • Eating Out
Not great for
  • Childcare
  • Gym & Fitness
  • Lack of Traffic
  • Nightlife
  • Parking
Who lives here?
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
  • Gay & Lesbian


3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 2/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 2/5
  • Shopping Options 2/5
  • Gym & Fitness 2/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Parking 2/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 2/5
  • Public Transport 2/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 2/5

"Hidden Pocket Neighborhood"

My wife had a friend who lived out here for a while so my direct knowledge of Bethel Island comes from our two visits to see him. Bethel Island is, first of all, not a typical island in the way that the Hawaiian Islands are islands. If Gilligan and the Skipper got trapped here, all they would have to do to save themselves is swim the little Dutch Slough or the Sand Mound Slough that separates Bethel Island from the “mainland”--which is kind of a funny thing to call it given we are some 40 miles or so east of the Pacific. So Bethel Island is technically an island but not by much.

As to living here? Only about a thousand people live on Bethel Island. Most homes on Bethel Island are along the sloughs and have backyards with docks. Boating is obviously a big recreational activity.

There is not much else here other than the open land. The main drag has a few of the basic amenities that you might expect, such as a U.S. Post Office and a couple of Mexican restaurants: Jalisco’s and La Villa. But for groceries or anything like that you will have to go over the bridge into town--which basically means Oakley.

The median home here sells for around $200K maybe. What is a little bit strange about Bethel Island is that it is one of the few places I have looked at that has a lot more homes for sale than have actually sold in the last year. You might think this is a strange statement given the Mortgage Crisis, but most places will still have more homes that have sold than homes that are on the market at any given time. (About three quarters of the homes on the market here are on the market due to foreclosure.)

Overall, I would definitely recommend it for those who are really into boating and work out here, but if you have to make the commute into the rest of Contra Costa County or the East Bay, I would not want to hit that horror show every morning.
  • Unusual Look
  • Relatively Good Spot for East Bay Commute
  • Very Stable Neighborhood
  • Narrow Streets
  • Out of the Way
  • No Nightlife
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
  • Gay & Lesbian

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