The area that is now Pleasant Hill has been occupied since the early 1900s, first as agricultural land and later mainly for housing development. After incorporation in the 1960s, growth centered around cultivating a diverse, family-friendly lifestyle.
Pleasant Hill is a decidedly suburban city—neighborhoods span from north to south completely uninterrupted. The city’s significant commercial districts are concentrated to the east along the Interstate 680 corridor, which allows for the entire area to provide a prominently park-like feel.
The family atmosphere is evident throughout the city. The downtown business district, developed in the 1990s, is modeled after a traditional small-town main street. Over 50 shops and restaurants occupy the blocks where Contra Costa and Monument Boulevards intersect, including City Hall, which is an impressive piece of architecture in its own right.
The city has over 125 acres of parkland, many of which include playgrounds or sports fields. The 63-acre is a particular favorite among locals and dog lovers thanks to its 2.5-acre dog park. Nearly six miles of the walkable runs through Pleasant Hill. Panoramic views of the valley and nearby 3,800-foot Mt. Diablo can be found at .
In addition to having an array of shops, restaurants, and parks open year-round, Pleasant Hill's calendar of events is jam-packed. Beyond its convenient location close to neighboring cities’ farmers’ markets, proves a fun, inventive alternative hosted weekly in front of City Hall.
Fourth of July is popular with a 5K run, parades, and fireworks. At year's end, Thanksgiving and Christmas take center stage with a tree lighting in November and annual holiday festival in December. It's not all family fun, though. Adult-centered events include (although kids are welcome here too), the , and the .