Sacramento, CA

Travel Guide
Sacramento featuring heritage architecture and an administrative buidling

Go gold panning, admire historic architecture and explore fascinating museums in the capital of California, a city constructed on the funds from boomtown fortunes.

California’s capital, Sacramento, was built using fortunes made from gold mining. Come to the city today and you’ll sense that a gold rush-era atmosphere still endures. A strong cultural scene also thrives. Visit a wide range of museums and galleries devoted to such varied topics as train travel, famous Californian figures and Native American cultures that were almost erased by the rush of gold-seeking settlers in the mid 19th century.

The roots of modern-day Sacramento can be traced back to the California gold rush, which began in 1848. The discovery of gold in the nearby Sierra Foothills led to a mass influx of prospectors and the city was soon established.

Explore the Old Sacramento area near the port to soak up the old-world atmosphere and learn more about the wave of pioneers who arrived in search of their fortune. Shop for gold rush-inspired souvenirs in the shops, take a boat cruise along the Sacremento River and hop aboard a horse-drawn carriage.

Find out more about Sacramento’s early days in the area’s array of museums. Among the most notable are the California State Railroad Museum, the Sacramento History Museum, Old Sacramento Schoolhouse Museum and Huntington and Hopkins Hardware, a recreation of a 19th-century hardware store.

Of course, Sacramento’s history didn’t begin with the gold rush. Prior to this, the area was inhabited by Native Americans. Inspect artifacts and learn about the lives of the pre-gold rush inhabitants at the California State Indian Museum. The museum is adjacent to Sutter's Fort State Historic Park, where Swiss-German immigrant John Sutter set up a trading outpost in 1839., to view the state-owned art collection and the memorial-dotted grounds. Art lovers will also enjoy the Crocker Art Museum, with a 15,000-strong collection featuring everything from ceramics to Italian Baroque paintings to street photography.

Sacramento is located at the confluence of the American and Sacramento rivers. Use buses, trolleys and light rail to get around town. To experience a more modern side of life in Sacramento, explore the hip Midtown district.

Where to stay in Sacramento

SureStay Plus Hotel by Best Western Sacramento Cal Expo
SureStay Plus Hotel by Best Western Sacramento Cal Expo
2.5 out of 5
1900 Canterbury Road, Sacramento, CA
The price is $71 per night from Dec 12 to Dec 12
Located in Woodlake, this hotel is within 3 mi (5 km) of Cal Expo, Discovery Park, and Cal Expo Race Track. Arden Fair Mall and Memorial Auditorium are also ...
3.2/5 (1,236 reviews)
"good"

Reviewed on Dec 3, 2021

SureStay Plus Hotel by Best Western Sacramento Cal Expo
Hyatt Regency Sacramento
Hyatt Regency Sacramento
4 out of 5
1209 L St, Sacramento, CA
The price is $179 per night from Dec 10 to Dec 10
Located in Downtown Sacramento, this eco-friendly hotel is steps from K Street Mall and California State Capitol. Sacramento Convention Center and Memorial Auditorium ...
4.3/5 Excellent! (1,045 reviews)
"Very friendly staff. Clean rooms. Great service"

Reviewed on Dec 5, 2021

Hyatt Regency Sacramento
DoubleTree by Hilton Sacramento
DoubleTree by Hilton Sacramento
4 out of 5
2001 Point West Way, Sacramento, CA
The price is $121 per night from Dec 12 to Dec 12
Situated in the business district, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Arden Fair Mall and Cal Expo Race Track. California State University Sacramento and Discovery ...
3.3/5 (918 reviews)
"The only issue was that our room had a broken smoke detector with a plastic bag around it"

Reviewed on Dec 3, 2021

DoubleTree by Hilton Sacramento
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.
TownePlace Suites by Marriott Sacramento Cal Expo
TownePlace Suites by Marriott Sacramento Cal Expo
2.5 out of 5
1784 Tribute Rd, Sacramento, CA
The price is $98 per night from Dec 19 to Dec 19
Situated in the entertainment district, this aparthotel is 1.5 mi (2.4 km) from Arden Fair Mall and within 6 mi (10 km) of Sutter's Fort State Historic Park ...
4/5 Very Good! (870 reviews)
"Great service and clean environment. Always coming back to this place whenever in Sacramento."

Reviewed on Dec 5, 2021

TownePlace Suites by Marriott Sacramento Cal Expo
Home2 Suites by Hilton Roseville Sacramento
Home2 Suites by Hilton Roseville Sacramento
3 out of 5
1900 Freedom Way, Roseville, CA
The price is $137 per night from Dec 26 to Dec 26
Situated near the airport, this aparthotel is within 3 mi (5 km) of William Jessup University, @the Grounds, and Fountains at Roseville. Westfield Galleria at ...
4.5/5 Wonderful! (288 reviews)
"Everything was good. Courteous employees all around."

Reviewed on Nov 29, 2021

Home2 Suites by Hilton Roseville Sacramento
Homewood Suites By Hilton Sacramento Airport - Natomas
Homewood Suites By Hilton Sacramento Airport - Natomas
3 out of 5
3001 Advantage Way, Sacramento, CA
The price is $120 per night from Jan 8 to Jan 8
Located in North Natomas, this aparthotel is within 6 mi (10 km) of American River, Discovery Park, and American River Bike Trail. Golden 1 Center and California ...
4.5/5 Wonderful! (1,026 reviews)
"It was clean, staff was nice and good bfast."

Reviewed on Nov 29, 2021

Homewood Suites By Hilton Sacramento Airport - Natomas
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Getting around Sacramento

While some of the major attractions located downtown are within walking distance of one another, you will need access to a car to get the most out of Sacramento. There is a light railway and public buses, but these don’t offer the same flexibility as driving and you may feel limited if you rely on them. Rent a car from one of the rental companies located in the city center or get one at the airport. Visit the California Department of Transportation website.Browse Sacramento rental cars.

Best time to visit

May and June generally see Sacramento’s events calendar packed with festivals. However, visiting between May and September will mean enduring extreme heat, with daytime temperatures often in the 90s F (30s C). Visit in the late fall or the early spring for more moderate weather. You will still find the city filled with life in these seasons, even if there are fewer events to choose from.

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