Northern California September 18, 2017
8 Things Longtime Northern Californians Wish They Could Tell Newcomers
No matter how much you read or hear about what it’s like to live in a certain place, you won’t truly know unless you experience it for yourself. There are many qualities that make Northern California a unique place to live, and they’re things that newcomers might not be expecting. Here are eight things Northern Californians wish they could tell newcomers.
We’re aware that these uncertain times are limiting many aspects of life. While we continue to feature destinations that make our state wonderful, please take proper precautions or add them to your bucket list to see at a later date. If you know of a local business that could use some extra support during these times, please nominate them here:
1. It's cold in the morning and evening.
Yes, California may be known for its sunshine and mild weather, but the truth is that the sunshine you've heard so much about only makes an appearance from late morning to early evening. The temperature can feel pretty different when you first walk out the door in the morning to when you come outside again for lunch. The lesson here is to keep a jacket or sweater in your car at all times.
2. Prepare to pay high rent or mortgage.
Housing in much of Northern California is expensive and competitive. That means low affordability and low availability. Be prepared to pay more than you would in most other states for rent or mortgage. Housing gets especially pricey in metropolitan areas like San Francisco and touristy coastal towns like Monterey.
3. It actually does snow!
While much of Northern California stays quite green year-round, you'll definitely find snow in Northern California. Places like Soda Springs, Bear Valley, and Mount Shasta are just a few of the many spots in Northern California where you'll find sledding, skiing, snowboarding, and other snow activities.
4. The Silicon Valley is a big tech hub.
In the Silicon Valley, you'll find start-ups and giant corporations galore. Many businesses both large and small got their start in Northern California. In the Silicon Valley, working in tech is not the exception, it's the norm.
5. Northern California is pretty far from Los Angeles.
As you can see from the map, a drive from Northern California to the southernmost tip of the state will take a while. If you're driving from the Bay Area, you're looking at 5 to 6 hours of travel time. From Eureka, you'll be driving for more than 10 hours! That's one reason why the Northern California culture is so different from that of Southern California -- the two regions are physically quite far apart. So don't move to Northern California thinking Disneyland and Hollywood are right nearby.
6. Tenaya Lake is one of many beautiful nature destinations.
From pristine coastline to towering redwoods and steep peaks, California has the best of what Mother Nature has to offer. If you're an outdoorsy nature lover, you'll never run out of things to do and places to visit in the upper half of the Golden State.
7. There are countless delicious dining options.
If you're a food lover, you're in luck. Northern California has some of the best restaurants in the country. From the metropolitan hills of San Francisco to the country roads of Northern California's rural towns, there is such a wide array of dining that your palate is guaranteed to never be bored.
8. Time zones can be tricky.
If you have relatives on the East Coast, you're looking at three-hour time difference. When you're heading to work, they're eating lunch. When you arrive back home at night, they're already climbing into bed. Be prepared to always be adding three hours in your head when you're getting ready to Facetime loved ones.
Do you know the obvious signs of a Northern Californian?
Check them out.