Bel Marin Keys, CA – A “Boatie” and Nature Lover’s Paradise

Our number plate holders read “Bel Marin Keys” “We Are Unique” – and that is the truth.
Located just under twenty miles north of the Golden Gate Bridge in Marin County, California, we are a community of about 700 houses plus about 42 town homes/condos almost all of which have direct water frontages. The few that don’t have direct water frontages have easily accessible docks nearby.
Situated on and adjacent to Novato Creek, this unique development of creek-side and man-made lagoons, commenced in the early sixties, will never be repeated.
Bel Marin Keys is an unincorporated area of Marin with its own Community Services District – the smallest arm of Marin County Government.
The lagoons occupy about 270 acres so in effect each home has an average of over one third of an acre of lagoon surface associated with it. No free-standing homes have more than two neighboring properties.
The lagoons are separated from Novato Creek by locks large enough to accommodate a 50+ ft boat. The Creek connects directly to San Pablo Bay which is entered near the mouth of the Petaluma River.
Want a Big Boat at the Bottom of Your Garden?
The Creek is navigable at suitable tides for boats up to 45 ft or so. When not navigating the seven seas your “pride and joy” 40 footer can sit safely at the bottom of your garden in an essentially tideless environment.
Our near neighbors here in BMK (as it’s known to the natives) make way for the Farallones from time to time in their 35 ft cruiser or even join in the “Ba Ha Ha” – an increasingly popular annual fun cruise down to the Baja peninsular. Another neighbor has an impressive, very spiffy, 35 ft workboat at his back door.
Waterskiing Anyone?
If you’d rather go waterskiing, how nice is it to let your competition-class ski boat down off its boat lift into the lagoon and be off at a moment’s Secrets Of Buying A House notice from your own dock – located in water on your property! (Your property line is actually quite some tens of feet beyond your “beach”).
Fishing Perhaps?
Maybe you’re up for something quieter – like fishing for instance. Quite a few people amuse themselves catching (and usually releasing) the legal-size striped bass that are quite prevalent in the lagoons. Maybe you’d like to take your aluminum dinghy or fishing boat two and half miles down the Creek for a spot of striper, sturgeon, starry flounder or salmon fishing at the mouth of the Petaluma River or further into San Pablo Bay.
“Just Sittin’ on the Dock of the Bay”?
Well maybe not on the Bay but you can certainly see the Bay from quite a few of the properties in BMK. Just sit on your deck looking across the hay fields at the 180 degree view from Mt Tam to Hamilton Landing to Richmond to Berkeley to Mt Diablo to the Carquinez Strait and American Canyon. You can even see the Campanile of UC Berkeley from our deck. Have a nice quiet lunch of crab and Chardonnay and watch the distant Cargo boats navigate to or from the Strait.
Bird Watching
Perhaps you’d rather calmly observe the plentiful bird life (Grey Heron, Lesser and Greater white Egrets, Coots, Buffleheads, Terns, Black-Crowned Night Herons, Ospreys, Eagles, Seagulls, Mallards, Kingfishers, Pelicans, Home Builders Companies Cormorants, Canada Geese (nesting by the lagoons), Grebes, Barn Owls, Horned Owls, various pipers and more). Please don’t run over a bevy of those mad little California Quail who seem to think they can outrun a car.
Listen to the coyotes at night in the hayfields which are also visited by deer and even the occasional jack rabbit. River otters are seen quite frequently in parts of the lagoons. See the meteor showers almost as if you lived in the country – away from the city lights.
Of course, as with any residential property, there are some secrets of location that are known only to those who live there. Let us be your guide to finding the ideal property for you in this unique locality.

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