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The Carquinez Strait is a narrow tidal strait in northern California. It is part of the tidal estuary of the Sacramento and the San Joaquin rivers as they drain into the San Francisco Bay. The strait connects Suisun Bay, which receives the waters of the combined rivers, with San Pablo Bay, a northern extension of the San Francisco Bay.
The strait forms part of the border between Solano (to the north) and Contra Costa (to the south) counties, and is approximately 15 mi (25 km) north of Oakland. The cities of Benicia and Vallejo lie on the north side of the strait, while Martinez, Port Costa, and Crockett sit on the southern coast. The Napa River joins the strait, via the short Mare Island Strait, near its entrance into San Pablo Bay.
The strait is crossed by two highway bridges, the Carquinez Bridge on Interstate 80 and the Benicia-Martinez Bridge on Interstate 680.
Adjacent Carquinez Strait Regional Shoreline comprises 1,415 acres of bluffs and shoreline along Carquinez Scenic Drive between the town of Crockett and the hillsides overlooking Martinez. Excellent bird watching and wildlife viewing is available here.