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Feel the upswing of energy in California’s state capital. Sacramento is experiencing a cultural awakening as young adults move into the affordable city with a low-key yet urban vibe. Encounter a small but thriving art scene in Sacramento, along with buzz-worthy nightlife and chill microbreweries. Farm-to-table cuisine is a point of pride. Award-winning chefs sling hyper-fresh local ingredients and foodies sip Central Valley wines.
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Established in 1849, Sacramento is the oldest city in California. Its substantial history is especially evident in the Old Sacramento Historic District. Strolling through this riverfront pioneer town gives you a real sense of life in the 1860s and 1870s. Sacramento was once a busy Gold Rush hub, and the end of the line for the Pony Express and the transcontinental railroad. Today, the six-block neighborhood features horse-drawn stagecoaches and boardwalk-style sidewalks lined with shops and restaurants.
Hop on a steam train at the California State Railroad Museum, a huge attraction with 21 well-preserved train cars and engines. Wander paved trails along the Sacramento River. Check out the one-room Old Schoolhouse, and enjoy a cold drink on the deck of a paddlewheel riverboat.
It’s just a fifteen-minute walk to Sacramento’s other tourist enclave, which is located around the Capitol Mall. The cupola-capped California State Capitol is one of the prettiest buildings in the state. Tour the museum and chambers inside, and then relax in the 40-acre park full of gardens, monuments, and memorials. Admire artifacts from 10 native tribes nearby at the California Museum.
Explore the oldest restored fortress in America at Sutter’s Fort State Historic Park. Browse pioneer relics that paint a picture of life on the frontier in the 1800s, including furniture and a blacksmith shop.
Getting around Sacramento is easy, thanks to its grid-like design and convenient light rail system. Bicyclists will love the wide lanes and paved riverfront trails. Enjoy a slower pace of life and discover the unassuming pleasures of a city on the rise.