Located on the outskirts of Benicia, the Benicia State Recreation Area has the combined waters of fourteen tributaries of the San Joaquin and Sacramento rivers surging through the Carquinez Strait and into San Pablo Bay. For more than a hundred years, these waters have carried clay and silt from the timber logging sites and hydraulic gold mines of the Sierra.
Most of the recreation area is made up of marsh and mudflat, and both provide habitat for endangered and unusual species. The state area covers 720 acres of grassy hillsides, marsh, and rocky beaches located along the narrowest portion of the Carquinez Strait. There are day-use areas that offer spectacular views of the bay, and a quiet and breezy refuge from urban demands.
Cyclists, equestrians, roller skaters, walkers, and pet parents with their pooches frequent the park. The road and bike paths are always busy. Other more popular activities are fishing, picnicking, and bird watching. The presence of dogs is embraced at the park, but they must constantly be on a leash. There are no dog scooper bags available, so pet parents must bring some to use.
If you visit the Benicia State Recreation Area during the right season, you might be able to pick wild berries. There is plenty of space for large campsites. There are no hookups; however, there is a water faucet in the middle of the three camping spots. Vehicles can access the park through a toll gate with a parking fee of $6 charged accordingly.
However, it may be difficult to find parking spaces inside. Fitness enthusiasts and active gym persons will find the area ideal if they want a break from their usual gym routine. There is equipment for dips and pull-ups. The climate is generally cold and windy year-round, but there is frequent fog. There is an average rainfall of three inches during winter months, and temperatures range from 40 to 101 degrees. Layered clothing is recommended as the weather always changes.