Perfectly Small Cities: Citrus Heights

Author: Alecia Pirulis

Citrus Heights, California - City Hall

Citrus Heights, California – City Hall (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

California has some amazing locations: The stars and bright lights of Hollywood and Los Angeles, the Painted Ladies in San Francisco, the Golden Gate Bridge, Napa Valley, Silicon Valley, the Sequoias, Lake Tahoe, Yosemite National Forest, and the amazing Pacific Coast’s sun-drenched beaches of Malibu and Long Beach. With so many famous destinations, it’s easy to overlook smaller, less-famous places such as Citrus Heights, a suburban city near the State Capital of Sacramento.

Located along the Sacramento and American rivers, Sacramento is a beautiful city and the fourth largest in California. It is home to California State University-Sacramento and the UC Davis Medical Center, and has some gorgeous historic locations such as Sutter’s Fort and Old Sacramento. Old Sacramento even features cobblestone streets, historic buildings, paddle steamers, and historic trains. Citrus Heights is on the northeastern edge of Sacramento, roughly 15 miles from downtown.

Even with a history that dates back to the 16th century, Citrus Heights remains a hidden gem. It is situated between Sacramento and Roseville and is near Folsom and Rancho Cordova. San Francisco is roughly two hours away, Folsom Lake is less than 10 miles east, and Lake Tahoe and several national forests are just beyond that. It is also near several highways, such as Interstate 80, US Highway 99, US Highway 50, and Interstate 5.

Citrus Heights has a great park system and is home to Rusch Botanical Gardens, a two-acre garden dating to 1916. The gardens are of historical interest and include roses, herbs, and other types of plants and trees.

The Sunrise Mall, a large regional mall on Sunrise Boulevard, is one of the area’s biggest and most successful super-regional shopping malls. The mall was built in 1971 and attracts visitors from all over the Sacramento region, who enjoy a 500-seat food court with a fireplace and over 100 shops encompassing 1,200,000 square feet.

There are 11 distinct Citrus Heights neighborhoods and each community offers events and programs, including an annual Cocoa and Cookie Exchange, Christmas caroling, neighborhood yard sales, fun days, and neighborhood programs. One of these unique neighborhoods is SOAR (Sylvan Old Auburn Road Neighborhood), named the Neighborhood of the Year in 2009 by Neighborhoods USA. SOAR is a rural neighborhood with large properties and plenty of livestock – goats, donkeys, horses, peacocks, and even potbellied pigs. The neighborhood also features several small businesses, apartment buildings, and San Juan High School, built in 1913.

If you are looking for an apartment in the Sacramento area, be sure to check out the small suburban city of Citrus Heights. Not only is it more economical, but with its great neighborhoods, fantastic shopping, and proximity to everywhere, Citrus Heights is a secret you’ll want to discover.