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5 attractions to visit in the city of Sacramento

By Ana Torres |

Visit the city of Sacramento and discover the history of California through its museums, parks and its boat and train tours.

The United States is an eclectic destination. On one hand, you will love it if you like technology and shopping; on the other, you’ll find it delighting if you like natural settings.  In its different regions you’ll find several reasons to plan a new trip. In the meantime, we invite you to learn about the history of the state of California through the five main attractions of the city of Sacramento.

History of the Capital of California

It’s thought that before the English colonization, this area was inhabited by the Miwok Valley Indians. They lived there for perhaps hundreds of years. After the United States Independence War, different counties were created. California became an official state in December 1848, thanks to the efforts made by John Sutter, a Swiss immigrant. The name of its present capital, Sacramento, was established in 1808, when the Spanish explorer Gabriel Moraga discovered the valley and its river. He named it Sacramento, inspired by the Catholic sacrament of the Eucharist.

The citizens of Sacramento made a Charter of the City in 1849. It was acknowledged by the state legislature in 1850. As a consequence, Sacramento is the oldest city in California, incorporated on February 27th 1850.

Since it was founded, the capital of California has become a cultural and economic center. Moreover, it was the most important point of distribution of agricultural and mining products in the region. It was also where the telegraph and the first transcontinental railroad were established. For this reason, if you want to know part of the history of the United States and of California, Sacramento is the perfect destination.

#1 Capitol and Historic Park of the City of Sacramento 

The city of Sacramento is home to the Capitol of the State of California. Its white architecture is striking because with its columns and its dome, it looks like a miniature replica of the Washington Capitol! We recommend you visit it and enter the Capitol Museum to see its collection of flags. The most famous ones are those of the American Civil War and the Second World War. Take a selfie inside the building, as it is the most representative one in the state.  Outside, you can walk through its Historical Park, famous for its beauty and diversity. It has trees of all parts of the world, and a rose garden that commemorates the International World Peace.

#2 The Crocker Museum 

This is the oldest museum west of the Mississippi! Its collection offers a varied artistic panorama that includes pieces of both historical and contemporary art. Its works are considered some of the best in the United States. The museum was a gift from Margaret Crocker – heir of the Crocker family – to the city of Sacramento. The site is located in an Italian-style mansion connected by a path to the Capitol building. In 2010, the museum was remodelled and the Teel Family Pavilion was added. This building is known for its modern architecture with natural lighting. Buy your tickets here.

#3 Sacramento History Museum 

The History Museum of Sacramento is perfect to learn the details of the history of California, including its most famous actors and some of the participants in the technological revolution of the United States. You’ll love visiting the California Hall of Fame, where people such as Francis Ford Coppola, Walt Disney, Steve Jobs and Frank Gehry – winner of the Pritzker Prize and creator of the Bilbao Guggenheim – are honored. Downlod your visitor’s guide here.

#4 The Delta King 

The Delta King is a restored boat that sails on the banks of the Sacramento River.  It allows all passengers to imagine the history of the city’s foundation.  On board you can decide if you want to have lunch or dinner, or even spend the night there. Your tour includes a visit to the National Historic Monument as well as other stops that show you a little more of the city of Sacramento. For example, there are old carriages that offer tours with certified tour guides who wear period costumes. And for those who love walking, there are also historic walking tours. These are perfect for visiting the corridors and underground chambers of the capital of California.

#5 State Railroad Museum and Train Tour in the City of Sacramento

Here you can learn how railroads transformed the life, economy and culture of the State of California. This museum exhibits 21 “Iron Horse” locomotives, as well as restored vintage cars which preserve their authentic porcelain -in the case of dining cars-, velvet seats and their original ornaments. One of the stellar pieces is the post office on wheels.  There are daily guided tours, and the museum stays open late on Thursday nights in the summer. In this season, you can also board a train of the Sacramento Southern Railroad. It runs along the banks of the Sacramento River. You can choose a first class panoramic wagon, a closed wagon or an open wagon, similar to a gondola. Don’t miss it!

 Other Attractions in the City of Sacramento

If you enjoy listening to music, you’ll  like to know the city of Sacramento is a popular destination for those who love jazz. Don’t miss the popular music events, where you can learn about the dixieland style that originated in the region.

Are you a film lover? Plan your trip during the French Film Festival of Sacramento. It is an annual event that contrasts with the Summer Festival, which recognizes the most absurd movies in Hollywood.

If you love sports, you should know that the city of Sacramento has two professional basketball teams: the Sacramento Kings (NBA) and the Sacramento Monarchs (WNBA). Both usually train at the local Sleep Train arena.

In addition, if you plan your vacation during August, you will be able to attend the California State Fair. It’s held in the city of Sacramento each year in the late summer, and it ends on Labor Day, the first Monday of September.

Now that you know the 5 main attractions of the city of Sacramento you are ready for an incredible cultural trip. Enjoy your stay in this beautiful city of California and don’t forget to tell us which of the museums you liked best.