The discovery of gold at Coloma, about 40 miles east of Sacramento, kicked off a rush that stirred emotions around the world. People came by the tens of thousands to seek their fortunes along the American River and its tributaries. Sacramento, which saw its population boom from 1,000 to 40,000 in just two years, became the industry’s principle supply center.Today, echoes of the gold rush still can be felt in Sacramento and in the Sierra Nevada foothill towns along Highway 49, which play up their heritage to attract visitors. State historic parks in Coloma, the site of Sutter’s Mill, and Columbia, perhaps the best-preserved gold-rush town of them all, offer interpretive exhibits, living history days and activities of special interest to families.
And there’s still genuine treasure to be found in them ‘thar hills, where gold panning is a weekend hobby for many Northern Californians, and full-time pursuit for a few. Novice prospectors can learn basic skills at state parks or from private tour operators.
From gold-rush era store fronts to modern office buildings and shopping centers built in eye-catching styles, Sacramento has a lot to see in terms of architecture. The city is especially proud of the Victorian-era homes that give downtown and midtown residential districts a charm seldom found in America’s inner cities. Some of the most impressive examples of craftsmanship are to be seen in buildings open to the public, including the Capitol, the Crocker Mansion (now housing the Crocker Art Museum), the Governor’s Mansion (also a museum) and the Williams Mansion (now home to the Sacramento International Hostel) and the Leland Stanford Mansion. An architectural walking, or driving, tour will open your eyes to many other such gems.
Memories of childhood vacations are in the making in Sacramento. There’s something for every child (and their parents too!) in this family-friendly city, whether they be a sports fanatic, history buff, fascinated by fantasy or a future scientist.
The discovery of gold at Sutter’s Mill in Coloma capped off the greatest human migration in history. Thousands of hopeful pioneers headed towards Mexican California on the Oregon Trail in search of a better life. From the settlement town of Old Sacramento, to the supply center and trade post of Sutter’s Fort, the Sacramento region is rich in Gold Rush History.
The revitalization of Downtown and Midtown Sacramento has generated a surge of nightclubs, comedy clubs, live music venues and many more entertainment venues throughout the region. So, put your party clothes on and get ready to discover Sacramento’s nightlife.
At the foundation of Sacramento’s sports identity are ideal settings and establishments for various recreational activities. Welcome to Sacramento, where made-to-order weather, an active community and all levels of competition combine for an amazing recreational environment!
With all the financial demands we face, it’s nice to know that Sacramento is not only a great vacation destination, but also an affordable one. Listed below is a sampling of free attractions that represent Sacramento’s identity as the home of the Gold Rush, state capital of California, agricultural powerhouse and unique, modern city. Enjoy all that money can’t buy, here in Sacramento!
Discover a wealth of information on travelling by Motorhome, Caravan or Boat when planning your holiday or trip of a lifetime
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