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Trip List by nyisrlady

Weekend in Sacramento

Aug 7, 2006  Baseball fan
3.5 of 5 stars based on 5 votes

If you have to go to Sacramento, you can find some fun things to do while you're there.

  • Category: Recent trip
  • Traveler type: Culture, Sightseeing, Shopping, Active/Outdoors, Repeat visitors, Sports buffs
  • Appeals to: Business travelers, Couples/romantics, Singles, Families with small children, Families with teenagers, Large groups, Seniors, Students, Budget travelers, Active/adventure, Tourists
  • Seasons: Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall
  • 1. Raley Field

    Raley Field was built in 2000 and is the home of the Triple-A affiliate of the Oakland A's, the Sacramento Rivercats. It's a wonderful, intimate ballpark with around 15,000 seats that also hosts concerts and events in addition to ball games. If you "collect" ballparks like my husband and I do, don't miss this one. Plus, the Rivercats are a fun team to watch, and you'll see some players that will turn up in the majors pretty soon.

  • 2. Old Sacramento

    Old Sacramento is an area of a few square blocks that contains mostly old brick buildings that have survived various disasters in the city's history or been rebuilt. Although it now houses primarily "tourist-type" shops and restaurants, you can still find a few gems down here and it's fun to walk around for an afternoon. Highlights include the Wells Fargo museum and historical museum, train rides, and some shops with local artists' creations.

  • 3. Fulton's

    900 Second Street, Sacramento (Old Sacramento), (916) 444-9641. What's unique about Fulton's is that it is built in the basement of an old building that's no longer there! You walk down steps from street level into an open courtyard that was formerly the building's basement. Courtyard seating is very pleasant with a trickling fountain and umbrellas. Around the perimeter of the courtyard are doors opening into the interior restaurant and bar. Food is American style cuisine with sandwiches, chicken, pasta dishes, all good and nicely presented. Beer, wine and mixed drinks are available. Prices are average. The courtyard is a great place to stop off for a cool drink while walking around downtown Sacramento.

  • 4. California State Railroad Museum

    You could easily spend all day browsing at the California State Railroad Museum. You don't need any particular interest in railroads to enjoy it and there's something for everybody. First and foremost of course are the rail cars...beautifully restored rail cars from a variety of eras, several of which you can actually enter and walk through. My favorite is the dining car, with tables fully set with railway china which is very collectible today. There's also a Pullman sleeping car. In addition to the rail cars, there is a huge amount of information, photos, and vintage items from the heyday of the railways in the 19th century, including the construction of the rails through the difficult California terrain by immigrant workers. For those really into toy trains, there's a huge display of those with numerous examples and a whole running train setup. This museum is cleverly designed and all the displays are carefully crafted to provide the maximum entertainment value while you are actually learning quite a lot about California history. I have to admit to enjoying the gift shop too! This is a perfect family outing and would be great for bringing out of town guests.

  • 5. Sacramento River Water Intake

    The $32 million Sacramento Water Intake Facility may not seem like a very exciting attraction, but in fact it is well worth a quick visit. It's located alongside the Sacramento River off Jibboom Street, just a few blocks from Old Sacramento. This facility, completed in 2004, was designed to be a marriage between public works and public art, and they succeeded pretty well. The intake facility houses six 300hp and two 150hp pumps and can draw 160 million gallons of water from the river every day. Special screens protect fish. It could have just been a concrete box sitting out in the river as an eyesore, but instead the powers that be created an interesting and attractive monument. Shaped rather like a boat, the upper part is of steel and glass, and several art pieces are integral to it. You can walk across a causeway to the facility, then walk around it and through the middle of it. You get a superb view of the Sacramento River in both directions. Between the facility and the parking lot is a plaza that includes a flat fountain that spouts water at irregular intervals and is a lot of fun for kids to play in. I was pretty impressed at the effort that went into making this not only a functional but an attractive and interesting addition to the Sacramento area.