Parks are an excellent addition to any city. They provide open spaces to play, relax, and conduct a variety of activities on. There’s a reason they often are top of the list when people are searching for activities to do in their local area.
When it comes to the Sacramento area, there are few places on earth that have a better selection of fantastic parks! In fact, Business Insider ranked Sacramento third in a list of US cities with the best parks circa 2013. That’s no fluke either – Sacramento is regularly rated as having some of the best parks in the US from publications of all sorts. In total, the Sacramento parks system covers an astronomical 5,000 acres. In Sacramento there are 223 parks and parkways totalling nearly 4,255 acres of land! Needless to say, this is a mind boggling amount of parks, and we couldn’t possibly cover them all, but we’ll use this blog to run you through some of the highlights!
William Land Regional Park – Sacramento Park with a view and a zoo!
Rated amongst the most popular of Sacramento’s attractions, William Land Regional Park is a stunningly beautiful 200-acre public land area, offering a truly wide variety of amenities and sub-attractions within it. Alongside open, semi-natural spaces with trees and a large lake, it also has walking and biking trails. The park was developed in the 1920s, and has grown in size and appeal since that time.
A primary motive for people to go to William Land Regional Park is to see the Sacramento Zoo, which is contained within the park. The zoo, 15 acres in size, is almost as old as the park itself. Another park attraction is Fairytale Town, also contained on the grounds of William Land Regional Park. This kid-oriented amusement park offers fairytale-themed attractions, a petting zoo, and more!
It’s clear why this park is beloved by locals and tourists alike. You could make a whole day out of simply exploring this park alone!
3800 W Land Park Dr, Sacramento, CA 95822, (916) 808-6060
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Southside Park – A great park for a day out with kids!
Southside Park is a 19-acre park which is rather unintuitively located in the northern section of Sacramento’s city center. Southside Park is a popular spot for locals especially, owing to a wide variety of amenities that make it a perfect spot for a family day out.
The amenities of this park include picnic benches and built-in barbeques, an amphitheater, a large aerated pond, a basketball and golf course, and more! Also worth mentioning is the elaborate solar system-themed playground, widely loved by Sacramento kids, owing to its wide variety of interesting play structures.
Additionally, if you’re willing to walk a block or so away, the nearby .75-acre Southside Community Garden is an oft-visited nearby attraction, another among Sacramento’s many high-pedigree parks.
2115 6th St, Sacramento, CA 95818, (916) 808-5200
California State Capitol Park – One part museum, one part park.
The Capitol Park is a stunning scenic park centered around the Capitol Complex – a series of historic buildings that serve as state centers for the governance of California. The nearby California State Capitol Museum, set in a beautiful neo-classical building, draws in thousands of visitors every day.
Initially part of the garden for the state capitol, the California State Capitol Park has since transformed into a 40-acre public park with all sorts of monuments, memorials, and walking paths. Also included among the attractions here are distinct and beautiful flower gardens, which the park is well known for.
The Capitol Park provides an excellent side attraction to the Capitol Complex – or vice versa! This is a wonderful park, living up fully to Sacramento’s high standards for public parks.
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Miller Regional Park – A Sacramento park with a dock!
Miller Regional Park is among the more unique of Sacramento’s 223 parks. One portion of the park is the typical greenery and picnic areas that you might expect out of any city’s park. The other portion, however, is a full marina on the Sacramento River, hosting boats of many sizes.
If you just plan on spending a relaxing day out, the green areas provide an excellent view of the river, as well as the marina. If you’re a boat owner, the marina might be the perfect place to moor it! Regardless, this incredibly unique park is worth visiting, if only for the novelty.
2701 Marina View Dr, Sacramento, CA 95818, (916) 808-5200
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McKinley Park – Rose gardens and wonderful play areas of kids.
McKinley Park, located in eastern Sacramento, is 32 acres of greatness, widely visited by locals, especially those locals with families and young kids. Amenities here include a basketball court, a community center, picnicking areas, a horseshoe pit or two, and many more. Also notable is the large playground area, which has lots of structures and toys to keep your kids entertained. The park is over a hundred years old, first being plotted out in 1870.
A big draw of the park is the renowned rose garden contained within. This beautiful rose garden enhances the beauty of the park around it, and contains all sorts of beautiful flowers. The park also has a wildlife pond, where animals are allowed to make their homes, as opposed to the usual curated and aerated ponds of other parks.
With its wide variety of recreation areas and sights to see, this is all in all a truly wonderful Sacramento park!
601 Alhambra Blvd, Sacramento, CA 95816, (916) 808-6060
Discovery Park – Set on the confluence between two beautiful rivers.
Discovery Park is located in the northern part of Sacramento, set right on the confluence between the famous Sacramento River and the smaller American River. This alone draws in many people, wishing to see the rivers meet and hang out along the river bank.
However, Discovery Park has plenty more to do than just sit around. 302 acres in total, Discovery Park is famous for its extensive biking trails, over thirty miles of them, in fact! There’s also plenty of walking trails, ball parks, as well as docks and water access points to facilitate fishing and boating. Hikers who don’t want to drive too far from Sacramento will love all the hiking opportunities here!
Discovery Park is also relatively famous for hosting concerts and performances of all sorts. Young folks will love it here!
Needless to say, Discovery Park has everything you could possibly need out of any sort of outdoor park, and is sure to blow you away!
1600 Garden Hwy, Sacramento, CA 95833, (916) 875-6961
Sutter’s Landing Regional Park – Sacramento park with a long history!
Sutter’s Landing Regional Park is located on the eastern end of Sacramento’s center, situated right on the bank of the American River. Why the name, you ask? John Sutter was a US captain, sailing up and down the various rivers of the west. In 1839, so it is told, he landed at this exact spot, and built a fort. That fort would grow in size and population, and eventually become the basis for the creation of Sacramento.
As for what purpose this river bank serves today, the Sutter’s Landing Regional Park is 166 acres in size, sporting miles of pedestrian and biking trails, as well as links to many trails around the city of Sacramento. Trails stretch on both sides of the river, so this park is an excellent spot to use as a hub for getting on whichever trail you desire.
You’ll no doubt enjoy this amazing park! Enjoy history and a lovely outdoor space, all at the same time!
20 28th St, Sacramento, CA 95816, (916) 808-5200
Sacramento Parks Map
Do any of the
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parks we’ve listed in this article interest you? Take a look at this map to see where all the parks we recommend are!
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