A Complete Newcomer's Guide to Sacramento
August 3, 2018

A Complete Newcomer’s Guide to Sacramento

We hear you’ve decided to move to Sacramento! First things first, we’re here to assure you that you’ve made the right decision. With its vibrant culture, beautiful landscape, convenient location, charming neighborhoods, farm-to-fork cuisine, relatively affordable housing, and other attractive qualities, Sacramento is an exceptional place to call home. In fact, the capital city is the most common destination for those fleeing the Bay Area.

Before we proceed with the basics every local will want to know, take a look at the 15 things you need to know before you move to Sacramento. It may be good to educate yourself on some history and stats before you make the move official!


Where to Get Coffee

Best Coffee in Sacramento

One of the first things you’ll want to establish upon moving to Sacramento is your go-to local coffee shop. Thankfully, there are a number of amazing coffee shops scattered throughout the region, and we’ve captured most of them on our complete guide to coffee in Sacramento — with an interactive map, too! Some of our favorites include Temple Coffee Roasters, The Mill, Old Soul Co., and Morgan’s Mill.


Where to Get Groceries

Grocery Stores in Sacramento Area

Next, you’ll want to ensure your fridge is properly stocked! While there is no shortage of grocery stores scattered throughout the region, some neighborhood favorites include Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op, Raley’s, Save Mart, and Safeway, which has more than a dozen locations in the Sacramento area. And during the spring and summer, there’s no better place to pick up fresh produce or homemade baked goods than your local farmers’ market. The rich agricultural landscape of the area means there is a bounty of fresh fruits and vegetables just waiting to be picked! Take a look at all of the farmers’ markets in the Greater Sacramento Area.


Where to Eat


Food in Sacramento

We could spend this entire list talking about all of the amazing dining destinations in the area. In fact, Sacramento is considered America’s Farm-to-Fork Capital, which is directly reflected in the incredible farm-to-fork eateries you’ll find all throughout the city. Whether you’re looking for healthy options or places worthy of cheating on your diet, there’s something for everyone in Sacramento. There are plenty of options for a quick lunch, a sit-down dinner, and even late-night eats. Plus, our gluten-free, vegan and vegetarian friends can thrive in Sacramento!


Things to Do With Kids

Things to Do With Kids in Sacramento

Sacramento is a haven for families. There are so many ways to keep kids busy and active — from the heat of summer to the middle of winter. William Land Park, which hosts the Sacramento Zoo, Funderland Amusement Park, Fairytale Town, plus lots of grass and trails, is the perfect one-stop-shop for families. Plus, there are so many family-friendly restaurants in the Sacramento area, which means you can enjoy the city’s many great eateries with the whole crew! Another easy activity for kids is a trip to one of the area’s many amusement or water parks. Or you can visit Soil Born Farms to learn more about urban farming. The possibilities for kid-sized fun in Sacramento are endless!


Where to Go for Date Night

Date Night Ideas in Sacramento

After you’ve settled in, you may want to celebrate your move with a special date night! Thankfully, we have several unique date night ideas up our sleeve — from wine tasting to indoor skydiving. Plus, there are several romantic restaurants to wine and dine at, like The Kitchen, a renowned multi-course concept (with an intermission!). And if you’d rather think a bit outside the box, Sacramento has plenty of date activities that don’t involve going to a restaurant. There is so much for you and your date to explore — winter, spring, summer or fall.


Where to Shop

Local Shops in Sacramento

The small business community in this city is like nothing else. Our little-meets-big-town feel means Sacramento is packed with local shops, selling everything from scarves to vases, and everything in between. Take a look at some of our favorite lifestyle and home boutiques in the Sacramento area. They are the wonderful destinations for finding that perfect gift for someone — or yourself!


Where to Grab a Drink

Drinks in Sacramento

In addition to its renowned dining scene, Sacramento has a sophisticated collection of places to grab a drink — whether you prefer a brewery, a cocktail bar, a cidery, or an urban winery. Plus, many of the city’s best restaurants offer a weekday happy hour with wonderful drink deals, so you can get a fancy cocktail or craft beer for less. And some happy hour menus are available on an airy outdoor patio, which makes your experience that much more dreamy. Pssst — Sacramento also has a number of weekly wine deals for #WineWednesday and a few secret Prohibition-era speakeasies you may not know about!


Where to Maintain Your Fitness

Fitness in Sacramento

Another important step (no pun intended!) when moving to a new city is establishing your local gym or exercise routine. There are plenty of amazing gyms in Sacramento worth joining, including traditional fitness centers, CrossFit boxes, rock-climbing gyms, and more. Or if yoga is more your speed, there are plenty of yoga studios to choose from, plus several free outdoor yoga classes throughout the summer!


Where to Travel To

Lake Tahoe

If you’ve heard any proud Sacramentan talk about their hometown, it’s likely you’ve heard the phrase, “It’s just two hours from…” It’s true! Our central location means we’re only about two hours from the beach to the west and the mountains to the east. You can easily head to Lake Tahoe for a day on the water or skiing in surrounding mountains. And in the same amount of time, you could be exploring the streets of San Francisco or dipping your toes in the Pacific. And in just about an hour, you could be sipping wine at any of the many wineries throughout the Napa Valley region. Or perhaps you want to retreat to a cozy cabin during the winter or summer! We are situated in an exceptional region for exploring the best Northern California has to offer.


The Best Outdoor Activities

Outdoor Recreation Near Sacramento

Sacramento offers endless outdoor recreation, which is another byproduct of our central location. You may have noticed the two major rivers winding throughout the region, which makes activities like rafting and tubing, stand up paddleboarding, and swimming possible. Plus, there are a number of exceptional hikes within three hours of Sacramento, ranging from easy hikes along paved trails to some more challenging mountaintop summits. Whether you prefer golfing, biking, camping, or lounging on an outdoor patio, there is something for you in Sacramento!


The Best Places to Live

East Sacramento

If you’ve yet to make your residence in Sacramento official, you may be looking for the right neighborhood to live in. Sacramento is surrounded by a myriad of diverse communities and cities, ranging from rural and laid-back small towns to more central and action-packed pockets in the heart of the city. Young professionals are attracted to areas like Midtown and Land Park, and East Sacramento has some of the most gorgeous architecture, especially in the Fab Forties area. There are plenty of affordable neighborhoods in Sacramento, making a move to this growing city even more attainable. Plus, there are several neighborhoods in the Sacramento area with impressive Walk Scores and Bike Scores, if foot and two-wheel transportation are your top priorities.


Your Go-To Real Estate Company

Lyon Real Estate

We may be a bit biased, but we consider ourselves your go-to resource for all things related to your move! Not only can we assist with all the details related to your home buying experience, but we also will help you become acquainted with the community you choose to call home.

Follow along on the Lyon Local for updated information about upcoming community events, local hotspots, market reports, and other real estate insight. And when it comes time to sell your home or buy another in the area, Lyon Real Estate will still be here! Let us know how we can help make your transition easier.

Category Neighborhood Guides, Real Estate, Sacramento

Lyon Real Estate