12 Fun Things To Do in Sacramento With Kids

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Girl pets Capybara at SeaQuest Folsom California

Whether you are planning a trip to Sacramento or already live in the region, California’s capital city and surrounding area make a great destination for spending the day with your kids. Whatever interests you and your family may have, there are numerous opportunities to get out of the house or hotel and try something new. If you’re seeking out fun things to do in Sacramento with kids, check out this list of 12 excellent activities to entertain the whole family!


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Dive In at SeaQuest – Folsom

To experience underwater life like never before, you do not want to miss out on the SeaQuest Folsom land and sea adventure. Here, you can snorkel in tropical water with stingrays, sharks, and colorful fish. You can also hang out with a two-toed sloth named Flash and pretend you are in Australian grasslands by spending time with a wallaby. Porcupine, Asian otter, and fishy kiss foot exfoliating interactions are also available at this location.


Sacramento Children’s Museum – Rancho Cordova 

Plan a visit to the Sacramento Children’s Museum to nurture your kids’ imagination and build confidence while encouraging creative thinking and wonder. The museum offers educational exhibits and programs that align with California’s state curriculum standards. Children can paint plexiglass walls with tempera paints or sit in specially designed seats within water activity tables. You might finally convince your children that learning can be fun.


Sacramento State Railroad Museum

Museums are, without a doubt, some of the best things to do in Sacramento with kids. For another exciting option, visit the Sacramento State Railroad Museum.  Now called the California Railroad Museum, it features 21 restored locomotives, including steam engines, sleeper trains, and a high-speed train that goes as fast as 225 mph. With exciting artifacts, photographs, and other memorabilia, visitors can see how old railroaders used to live.


Sacramento History Museum

For a more comprehensive look at history, visit the Sacramento History Museum. With historical information about the California Gold Rush and its contribution to the area, this museum is another one you can find in Old Sacramento. If you appreciate architecture, you will love the building replicating the city’s 1854 City Hall and Waterwork building. Featuring Gold Rush and mining exhibits as well as information about fur trapping, local agriculture, and the Nisenan and Maidu Indian Nations, there is much to learn.


Fairytale Town – Sacramento

For an imaginative and safe place for your children to play, learn, and explore, Fairytale Town offers a unique escape for young people. This attraction features a 3.5-acre children’s play park, an outdoor children’s museum with a fairytale theme, a petting zoo, and a cafe where parents can relax. Your family can catch a show on one of its performing arts stages for even more entertainment. Take a step out of reality for an afternoon for a refreshing break from your day-to-day obligations.


Effie Yeaw Nature Center – Carmichael

The city can be nice, but sometimes all the hustle and bustle calls for reconnection to nature when finding things to do in Sacramento with kids. For an award-winning wildlife educational center that features 100 acres of oak trees on the American River Parkway, check out the Effie Yeaw Nature Center. With a natural playscape area, numerous trails to explore different outdoor habitats, and a replica village of the Nisenan Maidu native peoples, the center teaches visitors about the region’s history and natural environment with an emphasis on conservation.


Capitol Bowl – Sacramento

On the other hand, maybe you and the kids need more action. If there are any bowlers in your family, Capitol Bowl offers an award-winning bowling alley worth visiting for novice and experienced bowlers. Featuring flat-screen televisions, live music, delicious food, and glow bowling, Capitol Bowl is an exciting place to spend the afternoon or to host a party or special event. Depending on your children’s ages, league night options are also available.


Raging Waters – Sacramento

When the weather is hot, and you want to cool off, pack up the car and take everyone to Raging Waters Sacramento. Over 25 attractions include rides, slides, and splash pools. You and the kids can have a blast riding the Hurricane and Splashdown or enjoy time in the Breaker Beach Wave Pool and famous Shark Attack Waterslide. For something more relaxing, try the Calypso Cooler Lazy River.


Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area – Davis

For another chance to get in touch with nature when looking for things to do in Sacramento with kids, visit the Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area. If you love birds, it is a birder’s paradise with numerous bird species, including songbirds, waterfowl, migratory birds, and birds of prey. Featuring over 16,000 acres of scenic farmland and lush wetland, there are year-round opportunities to catch sight of various feathered creatures.


Capitol Hornblower Cruise – Sacramento

If you want a different perspective of the city aboard a one-hour narrative historical cruise, sign your family up for a ride on the Capitol Hornblower. While enjoying the fresh air and seeing Sacramento from the water, you can listen to entertaining stories about the city’s past, from the early years of the Gold Rush to the famous Pony Express. You can also explore Old Sacramento before and after your adventure.


Lake Natoma

If you and your family love outdoor recreation, Lake Natoma is another must-see destination to consider for a day with the kids. Located along the lower American River, Lake Natoma provides the perfect place for kayaking, canoeing, swimming, and rowing. It features the Sacramento State Aquatic Center, which hosts numerous rowing championships, and there is even a historic African-American mining camp from the Gold Rush era.


State Capitol Building – Sacramento

How can you visit the Golden State’s capital city without checking out the State Capitol Building? Open to the public for free and often hosting special events, there is a lot of history to appreciate. After going on an educational tour, you and the family can walk over to the nearby Sutter’s Fort State Historic Park and learn about the important role it played during the Gold Rush. To complete your day of fun-filled learning, you can then enjoy the numerous food trucks that line up around the street.

Little boy admires stingrays at SeaQuest

There are many options when you are looking for fun and exciting things to do in Sacramento with kids. Whether you spend the day on a land and sea adventure of a lifetime at SeaQuest Folsom, take in the area’s history at an exciting museum, or reconnect with nature at one of the several outdoor activities around Sacramento, there are numerous ways to make memories with your family that can last forever. Remember to bring your camera and call ahead to make reservations to avoid any unwanted delays or surprises.

Young boy watches fish in aquarium

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