8.3 out of 10

Port Costa

38.0440307612235 -122.188250694688
Great for
  • Lack of Traffic
  • Nightlife
  • Parking
  • Cost of Living
  • Neighborly Spirit
Not great for
  • Childcare
  • Gym & Fitness
  • Pest Free
  • Public Transport
  • Clean & Green
Who lives here?
  • Singles
  • Tourists
  • Hipsters


5/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 2/5
  • Clean & Green 2/5
  • Pest Free 1/5
  • Peace & Quiet 2/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 5/5
  • Parks & Recreation 4/5
  • Shopping Options 4/5
  • Gym & Fitness 1/5
  • Lack of Traffic 5/5
  • Parking 5/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 2/5
  • Public Transport 1/5
  • Medical Facilities 2/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 1/5

"Snakes, Bears, Raiders, Bikers, and Filthy Room Named Fanny!"

Port Costa is as small as small gets in California, with barely over a hundred people counted in the last Census and it is likely that if you ask a hundred random people in Contra Costa County where Port Costa is, maybe only 1 in 10 will be able to tell you, and probably not even 1 in 100 would ever have physically been there before.

Because the truth is there is very little reason to actually head out here to this tiny port. It is however, a pretty cool spot, if like to hang around in a place that feel like the old west. the whole of the place is mostly just one long drag that drops down off Snake Road between Crockett and Martinez to the port. It is all about the buildings along this road--some old and rickety others kind of cool and eccentric in the way that buildings in little traveled places are.

Once you get down to the port, that is where it feels like you stepped back in time to the end of the 19th Century. It is dusty has lots of authentically weathered wood, and even though there are cars, motorcycles, a lot of them are classics and the place just feels like it has been lost in time--very cool.

The port is not much of a port, and unless someone is sneaking contraband in at night, it doesn’t look like it has recently been used. There are railroad tracks as well, but I’m not sure if they are often used either though I’m sure the UP still uses it.

The entertainments this town has to offer are a bit of an odd mix. There is first of all Wendy Addison’s Theater of Dreams which is a quirky art studio with offerings like miniature furniture and puppets made from antique newspapers. Odd but wholly unique.

The Warehouse Cafe is the local eatery and bar and gets a lot of bikers and Raiders fans (often bikers who are Raiders fans). It has a lot of authentic atmosphere--not like a Disneyland version of a dive, but a real divey dive. But be sure to watch out for the Polar Bear--he prefers bikers but has been known to get the occasional tourist as well.

And watch out even more for getting totally hammered, which is what people seem to do all the time here.

If you do get hammered you will likely end up at the very sinister looking hotel on the opposite side of the street, the Burlington, which it turns out used to be a brothel back in the day when this was an actual (and rather seedy) active port. The rooms here are named with girls’ names (the former pros) and many don’t have their own bathrooms. The beds, I hear are tiny and occasionally filthy.

By the way, if you should decide nothing says “be my Valentine” like taking your gal or guy to a 19th century bordello, be sure to get a reservation, I hear they book solid on Valentine’s Day. And avoid staying in Fanny--which apparently smells like its namesake!

So to sum up: if you want a bit of quirky out of time adventure, just come visit Port Costa--one of the Bay Area’s hidden treasures.
  • Great Atmosphere
  • Very Adventurous
  • Cool Hotel and Bar
  • Remote
  • Dirty Hotel Rooms
  • Probably a Touch Dangerous
Recommended for
  • Singles
  • Tourists
  • Hipsters

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