Things to do in Sacramento, CA

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    Sacramento: California's state capital

    Photo courtesy of Andrew Zarivny/iStock

Get Your Bearings in Sacramento

By Geneva Ives
Sacramento Expert

Stay
Eat
See & Do
Party
Shop

Where to Stay

In Sacramento, visitors have many hotel choices. There are plenty of clean, economy hotels and motels ideal for short visits and road trip stops. There are also luxury hotels, many of which are located in the heart of downtown Sacramento, near business centers and government offices. If you want to be near area attractions, try booking a family-friendly hotel for your stay.

Avoid:

Hotels near the airport, unless you are a business traveler. The airport is somewhat remotely located.

What to Eat

There is a wide variety of dining options in Sacramento. For fine dining and adventurous eats, downtown is your best choice. The suburbs are home to many popular chain restaurants as well as friendly mom-and-pop diners. Ice cream parlors are popular in Sacramento probably due, at least in part, to hot summer temperatures. If you've always wanted to conquer a giant banana split or sky high sundae, Sacramento's the place to do it!

Be Sure to Sample:

The lasagna at Biba.

Things to See

Sacramento is the state capital of California so, accordingly, there's a lot of history here! Top attractions include Sutter's Fort, the Railroad Museum and... well, the California State Capitol building. You can also visit Old Sacramento, a waterfront historic district, for a taste of the past. There are wooden sidewalks, old fashioned candy stores and saloons!

Take It or Leave It:

The California State Fair takes place in Sacramento for three weeks every summer.

Places to Party

Sacramento boasts a lot of nightlife options. Locals love live music, comedy and theater; it's easy to catch a live performance any night of the week, especially in downtown Sacramento. The Sacramento News & Review calendar will let you know what's happening in which neighborhood. Pool halls and neighborhood bars are also relatively easy to come by. 

Caution:

Some Sacramento clubs have dress codes. Be sure to check their websites before you head out.

Where to Shop

There's a lot of shopping in Sacramento! Boutiques are usually located in downtown Sacramento or in Midtown, a highly walkable neighborhood full of small venues and art galleries. Larger big box stores dot the suburbs. For mall shopping, try Arden Fair Mall or the Westfield Galleria in Roseville. If you're looking for shops outside of the city center, visit Folsom. It's home to both charming antique stores and a large outlet mall.

Best Local Souvenir:

The best local souvenirs can be found in historic Old Sacramento.

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