Sacramento, California is a city that has something for everyone. Located in the heart of Northern California, it is the state capital and the sixth-largest city in California. The city has a rich history dating back to the Gold Rush era and played a significant role in shaping California’s development. Today, Sacramento is known for its diverse culture, farm-to-fork cuisine, outdoor activities, and entertainment options.
With so much to offer, it’s no wonder that Sacramento has become a popular tourist destination. .
- 1 Old Sacramento State Historic Park
- 2 California State Capitol Museum
- 3 Sutter’s Fort State Historic Park
- 4 Outdoor Activities to Enjoy
- 5 Museums and Art Galleries to Explore
- 6 Entertainment and Nightlife Options
- 7 Food and Drink Scene in Sacramento
- 8 Shopping Destinations in Sacramento
- 9 Day Trips from Sacramento
Old Sacramento State Historic Park
If you’re a history buff, then Old Sacramento State Historic Park is a must-visit destination. This park is a living museum that showcases the city’s rich history and heritage. It covers an area of 28 acres and features several historic buildings from the mid-19th century, including the Eagle Theater, the B. F. Hastings Building, and the Big Four Building.
- The Eagle Theater was built in 1849 and is one of California’s oldest theaters.
- The B. F. Hastings Building was constructed in 1853 and served as a law office for Theodore Judah, who played a significant role in building the Transcontinental Railroad.
- The Big Four Building was completed in 1855 and housed the offices of the Central Pacific Railroad Company.
Visitors can take guided tours of these buildings to learn more about their history and significance. The park also offers carriage rides, riverboat cruises, and train rides that provide a unique perspective on Sacramento’s past.
California State Capitol Museum
The California State Capitol Museum is another historical site that should be on your itinerary when visiting Sacramento. The museum is located inside the state capitol building, which was completed in 1874 and serves as the seat of government for California.
- The museum features exhibits that highlight California’s political history, including its role in shaping national policies such as civil rights and environmental protection.
- Visitors can take guided tours of the capitol building to see its impressive architecture and artwork, including murals by renowned artist Arthur Mathews.
- The museum also has a gift shop where visitors can purchase souvenirs related to California’s political history.
Admission to the museum is free, and it’s open every day except for major holidays.
Sutter’s Fort State Historic Park
Sutter’s Fort State Historic Park is a living history museum that recreates life in Sacramento during the mid-19th century. The fort was built by John Sutter in 1839 and served as a trading post and agricultural center for the region.
- The park features several historic buildings, including Sutter’s residence, a blacksmith shop, and a bakery.
- Visitors can take guided tours of the fort to learn more about its history and significance.
- The park also hosts several events throughout the year that showcase different aspects of life in early Sacramento, such as gold panning demonstrations and frontier cooking classes.
Admission to the park is $5 for adults and $3 for children aged 6-17. Children under 5 are admitted free. The park is open every day except for major holidays.
Please note: – Sacramento is the capital city of California and boasts a rich history, with many museums and landmarks to explore.
Outdoor Activities to Enjoy
If you’re looking for some outdoor fun in Sacramento, there are plenty of options to choose from. Here are three great parks to visit:
American River Bike Trail
The American River Bike Trail is a 32-mile paved trail that runs along the American River from Old Sacramento to Folsom Lake. It’s a popular spot for biking, jogging, and walking, with beautiful views of the river and surrounding nature. Along the way, you’ll pass through several parks and recreation areas, including Discovery Park and William B. Pond Recreation Area.
|American River Bike Trail||Discovery Park||William Land Park|
|32 miles long||274 acres||166 acres|
|Paved surface||Natural surface trails||Paved surface with dirt paths|
|Biking, jogging, walking||Picnicking, fishing, boating||Picnicking, playgrounds, golf course|
Located at the confluence of the American River and Sacramento River, Discovery Park is a popular spot for picnicking, fishing, and boating. The park covers 274 acres and has natural surface trails for hiking and horseback riding. There’s also a boat launch ramp if you want to take your own boat out on the river.
William Land Park
William Land Park is a 166-acre park in the heart of Sacramento, with something for everyone. There are paved paths for walking and biking, playgrounds for kids, and a golf course for adults. The park also has picnic areas and a pond where you can feed the ducks.
No matter which park you choose to visit, be sure to bring plenty of water and sunscreen, especially during the summer months when temperatures can get hot. And don’t forget your camera – there are plenty of beautiful sights to capture along the way!
Please note: – The city is home to the Crocker Art Museum, which has an impressive collection of California art and is one of the oldest public art museums in the country.
Museums and Art Galleries to Explore
If you’re a fan of art and history, Sacramento has plenty of museums and galleries to explore. Here are three must-visit spots:
Crocker Art Museum
The Crocker Art Museum is one of the oldest public art museums in the country, founded in 1885. It features an impressive collection of California art, European paintings, and international ceramics. The museum also hosts special exhibitions throughout the year, showcasing contemporary artists from around the world.
|Admission Fee||$12 for adults, $8 for seniors/students/youths (ages 6-17), free for children under 6 years old.|
|Hours of Operation||Tuesday-Sunday: 10am-5pm; Thursday: open until 9pm; Closed on Mondays.|
California Automobile Museum
The California Automobile Museum is a must-see for car enthusiasts. It showcases over 150 classic cars and race cars from different eras, including muscle cars from the ’60s and ’70s, hot rods from the ’50s, and even some electric vehicles from the early days of automobiles. Visitors can also learn about the history of automotive technology through interactive exhibits.
- Location: Near Old Sacramento State Historic Park.
- Admission Fee: $10 for adults, $9 for seniors/students/military, $5 for children (ages 5-18), free for children under 5 years old.
- Hours of Operation: Open daily from 10am-5pm, except on major holidays.
California State Railroad Museum
The California State Railroad Museum is one of the largest railroad museums in the world. It features over 20 restored locomotives and train cars from different eras, including some that were used during the Gold Rush era. Visitors can also explore interactive exhibits and learn about the history of rail transportation in California.
|Location||Downtown Sacramento, near Old Sacramento State Historic Park.|
|Admission Fee||$12 for adults, $6 for youths (ages 6-17), free for children under 6 years old.|
|Hours of Operation||Open daily from 10am-5pm, except on Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day.|
No matter what your interests are, Sacramento’s museums and galleries have something to offer. Be sure to check out these three spots on your next visit to the city!
Please note: – For outdoor enthusiasts, there are plenty of parks and trails to enjoy, including the American River Parkway, which offers 32 miles of scenic biking and hiking paths.
Entertainment and Nightlife Options
If you’re looking for a night out in Sacramento, there are plenty of options to choose from. Whether you’re into sports, comedy, or just want to explore the city’s nightlife scene, there’s something for everyone.
Golden 1 Center
The Golden 1 Center is a state-of-the-art arena located in downtown Sacramento. It’s home to the Sacramento Kings NBA team and hosts a variety of concerts and events throughout the year. The arena has been recognized as one of the most technologically advanced venues in the world, with features like a 4K ultra HD video board and an advanced sound system.
If you’re a sports fan or music lover, be sure to check out what’s happening at the Golden 1 Center during your visit. .
Punch Line Comedy Club
The Punch Line Comedy Club is located in downtown Sacramento and is one of the city’s premier comedy venues. The club has hosted some of the biggest names in comedy over the years, including Robin Williams, Ellen DeGeneres, and Dave Chappelle. They offer shows several nights a week featuring both local talent and nationally recognized comedians. If you’re looking for a good laugh while in Sacramento, this is definitely worth checking out.
K Street is one of Sacramento’s main entertainment districts, with numerous bars, restaurants, and clubs lining the street. It’s particularly popular on weekend nights when locals come out to enjoy live music and dancing. Some popular spots include Dive Bar, which has a rooftop lounge with views of downtown Sacramento; LowBrau Bierhall, which offers German-style beers and sausages; and Ace of Spades, which hosts concerts by both local and national acts.
|Golden 1 Center||Punch Line Comedy Club||K Street|
|Sports and music events||Stand-up comedy shows||Nightlife district with bars and clubs|
|Technologically advanced arena||Hosts big-name comedians||Live music and dancing on weekends|
|Home of the Sacramento Kings NBA team||Shows featuring local talent as well as national acts||Variety of bars, restaurants, and clubs to choose from|
No matter what your interests are, Sacramento has plenty of entertainment options to keep you busy. From sports and comedy to live music and nightlife, there’s something for everyone in this vibrant city.
Please note: – Sacramento is also known for its farm-to-fork cuisine scene, with many restaurants sourcing their ingredients from local farms and producers.
Food and Drink Scene in Sacramento
Sacramento is known as the Farm-to-Fork Capital of America, and for good reason. The city’s location in the heart of California’s Central Valley provides access to some of the freshest produce in the country. This has led to a thriving food and drink scene that draws visitors from all over.
Farm-to-Fork Capital of America
Sacramento’s Farm-to-Fork movement began in 2012 when local chefs, farmers, and community leaders came together to promote the region’s agricultural bounty. Since then, the city has become a hub for sustainable farming practices and culinary innovation.
Best restaurants in Sacramento
There are many great restaurants in Sacramento that showcase the region’s fresh ingredients. One standout is The Kitchen, which offers a unique dining experience where guests sit at a counter surrounding the kitchen and watch as their meal is prepared. Other notable options include Mulvaney’s B&L, which serves upscale farm-to-table cuisine, and Frank Fat’s, a local institution known for its Chinese-American fare.
Table: Top Restaurants in Sacramento
|Frank Fat’s||Chinese-American||$$ – $$$|
Local breweries and wineries
Sacramento is also home to a growing craft beer and wine scene. Some popular breweries include Track 7 Brewing Co. , New Glory Craft Brewery, and Device Brewing Company. For wine lovers, there are several nearby regions that offer tastings and tours, including Lodi, Amador County, and El Dorado County.
List: Local Breweries
- Track 7 Brewing Co.
- New Glory Craft Brewery
- Device Brewing Company
List: Nearby Wine Regions
- Amador County
- El Dorado County
Whether you’re a foodie or a beer enthusiast, Sacramento’s Farm-to-Fork Capital status ensures that you’ll have plenty of delicious options to choose from. Don’t miss the chance to experience the city’s culinary scene for yourself!
Please note: – Visitors can take a tour of the California State Capitol building or catch a show at the historic Crest Theatre, which first opened in 1912.
Shopping Destinations in Sacramento
If you’re looking for a shopping experience in Sacramento, there are several destinations that offer a variety of options. From high-end boutiques to local farmers markets, there’s something for everyone.
Downtown Commons (DOCO)
Downtown Commons, also known as DOCO, is a modern outdoor shopping and entertainment destination located in the heart of downtown Sacramento. It features over 70 shops and restaurants, including popular brands such as Urban Outfitters and H&M. DOCO also houses the Golden 1 Center, home of the Sacramento Kings NBA team.
|Large selection of shops and restaurants||Parking can be difficult to find during peak hours|
|Outdoor atmosphere with plenty of seating areas||Somewhat limited options for high-end shopping|
Arden Fair Mall
The Arden Fair Mall is one of the largest indoor malls in Northern California, with over 165 stores and restaurants. It offers a mix of high-end retailers such as Nordstrom and Macy’s, as well as more affordable options like Forever 21 and H&M.
- The mall has an extensive food court with a variety of dining options.
- The mall hosts regular events such as fashion shows and live music performances.
|Huge selection of stores and restaurants||Can be crowded during peak shopping seasons|
|Indoor atmosphere provides relief from hot or cold weather||Parking can be difficult to find during peak hours|
Midtown Farmers Market
The Midtown Farmers Market is a weekly outdoor market that takes place on Saturdays in the heart of Sacramento’s Midtown neighborhood. It features over 90 vendors selling fresh produce, baked goods, and handmade crafts.
- The market is a great place to support local farmers and artisans.
- Live music and entertainment is often featured at the market.
|Fresh, locally sourced produce and goods||Only open on Saturdays, limiting availability for some shoppers|
|Affordable prices for high-quality products||Limited selection compared to larger shopping destinations|
Day Trips from Sacramento
If you’re looking for a change of scenery from the hustle and bustle of Sacramento, there are plenty of great day trip options within driving distance. Here are three popular choices:
Napa Valley Wine Country Tour
Napa Valley is world-renowned for its wine production, and it’s just a short drive from Sacramento. You can take a guided tour of some of the best wineries in the area, where you’ll learn about the wine-making process and get to sample some delicious wines. Some popular wineries to visit include:
|Winery Name||Location||Specialty Wines|
|Beringer Vineyards||Saint Helena, CA||Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay|
|Domaine Carneros||Napa, CA||Sparkling Wine, Pinot Noir|
|Sterling Vineyards||Calistoga, CA||Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay|
Lake Tahoe Day Trip
Lake Tahoe is one of the most beautiful natural wonders in California. It’s located about two hours east of Sacramento and offers a variety of outdoor activities year-round. In the summer months, you can go hiking or mountain biking on one of the many trails around the lake. You can also rent a boat or go kayaking on the crystal-clear waters. In the winter, Lake Tahoe is a popular destination for skiing and snowboarding.
Some of the best ski resorts in the area include:.
- Heavenly Ski Resort
- Squaw Valley
- Northstar California Resort
San Francisco City Tour
San Francisco is one of the most iconic cities in the United States, and it’s just a short drive from Sacramento. There are plenty of things to see and do in San Francisco, including visiting famous landmarks like the Golden Gate Bridge and Alcatraz Island. You can also take a stroll through Golden Gate Park or explore some of the city’s unique neighborhoods like Chinatown or Haight-Ashbury.
If you’re interested in history, you can visit some of San Francisco’s many museums like the de Young Museum or the Exploratorium. And if you’re a foodie, San Francisco has some of the best restaurants in the country serving up everything from fresh seafood to authentic Italian cuisine.
No matter which day trip you choose, you’re sure to have an unforgettable experience exploring all that Northern California has to offer!