20 Things to Do With Kids in the Sacramento Area
The Sacramento area is a haven for kids of all ages. A slower pace of living coupled with the city’s abundance of kid-friendly attractions creates an ideal setting for families to thrive.
There are so many activities to do with kids in the Sacramento area — whether it’s winter, spring, summer or fall. The next time you hear the dreaded “I’m bored” from your little ones, consult this list to pass the time — and have a blast all the while!
Learn About Urban Farming at Soil Born Farms
Take the kids to Soil Born Farms, an urban farm located in Rancho Cordova. This amazing non-profit organization hosts a number of exciting events, programs, classes and a farm stand with efforts focused on impacting both the local community and the planet as a whole.
Use Your Imagination at Fairytale Town
Nestled in the kids’ paradise that is William Land Park, Fairytale Town is filled with non-stop fun geared toward little ones. The 3.5-acre children’s play park hosts 25 playsets based on nursery rhymes and fairytales, a friendly flock of farm animals, two performing arts stages, and several gardens! Plus, admission to Fairytale Town is extremely low, ranging from $4.75–$5.75.
Have Fun at Funderland
Photo Courtesy of Funderland Amusement Park
Funderland Amusement Park is another must-visit while at William Land Park. This amusement park tailored for kids features a variety of rides, from a Flying Dragon roller coaster to a peaceful Funderland Train ride. Buy a family value pack of 30 rides for $44.95 or opt for the unlimited ride wristband for $19.50 each (available on weekdays only)!
Go on a Hike
Older kids will love going on a mini adventure by tackling a nearby hike. There are so many exceptional hikes near Sacramento, all situated within three hours of the city. The Point Defiance Loop Trail at South Yuba River State Park is an easier option with kids in tow! This easy, 2.5-mile loop travels through oak savannah, a mix of woodland and lower mountain pine forest, as well as a river bank zone. So in one fell swoop, you get three different sights.
Test Your Limits at an Amusement or Water Park
During the hotter months, there’s no better way to cool off than a visit to a water park! Or you can keep the swimsuits at home with a visit to an amusement park, perfect for thrill-seeking kids and kids at heart. Take a look at some of the best amusement parks and water parks in the Sacramento area. One of the most popular is Raging Waters, which features 25 family-friendly attractions, including over 20 slides, an 800-foot lazy river, and one of California’s original wave pools.
Learn About Trains at the California State Railroad Museum
Photo Courtesy of Kelly B. Huston via California State Railroad Museum
Head to the California State Railroad Museum to learn all about the history and engineering of trains, the age-old form of transportation many kids are fascinated by. This museum in the heart of Old Sacramento showcases the feats of engineering and ingenuity that have kept the Golden State steaming along for nearly 200 years. Take a tour of immaculately restored engines and cars, attend an event, or take a scenic 45-minute ride on the Sacramento Southern Excursion Train running every weekend along the Sacramento River.
Take a Stroll Through Old Sacramento
Speaking of Old Sacramento, that’s another area kids love to explore! In addition to restaurants, bars and historic buildings, there are a number of candy shops and toy shops lining the picturesque eight blocks of storefronts. Don’t miss Danny’s Mini Donuts, G. Willikers Toy Emporium, Candy Heaven and McGee’s Old Time Photos! For more ideas, consult our local’s guide to a full day in Old Sacramento.
See the River Cats or Sacramento Kings
At a certain age, going to a real life sporting event becomes a magical experience for kids, particularly boys! Depending on the season, you can take the whole family to either a relaxing River Cats game at Raley Field or an action-packed Sacramento Kings game at Golden 1 Center in the heart of downtown. If you frequent River Cats games enough, you might consider enrolling in the Dinger’s Kids Club program, which includes tickets for every Sunday game on the Toyota Home Run Hill, a t-shirt, base running after the game, and other benefits.
See Wildlife at the Sacramento Zoo
Photo Courtesy of the Sacramento Zoo
The Sacramento Zoo is a fun option for all ages — as the exotic wildlife on display never ceases to amaze their beholders. The zoo completely caters to its littlest guests, with daily educational programs, fun events throughout the year, and well-designed animal exhibits on display. Become members to make the zoo part of your regular routine as a family!
Take a Trip to Apple Hill
Apple Hill is a haven for families — especially during the fall! This collection of farms, ranches, orchards and family businesses hosts endless opportunities to pick your own apples or berries, embark on a hayride, pet farm animals, pick out a pumpkin or Christmas tree, and much more. If you visit during the fall, consult our complete guide to Apple Hill during the fall. And no matter when you visit, there are a number of bake shops in Apple Hill to satisfy your sweet tooth.
Learn Something New at the Sacramento Children’s Museum
The Sacramento Children’s Museum invites children to inspire, create and explore. The museum engages children ages 0–8 in meaningful discovery experiences that instill appreciation for the community, develop foundational skills and spark a life-long love of learning. Through an array of exhibits, children are introduced to the worlds of math, science, art and social learning skills. General admission for the museum is $8.50 for both children and adults.
Get Artsy at Art Beast Studio
Photo Courtesy of Art Beast Studio
Art Beast Studio provides a safe space for children under the age of 6 to explore various arts, rather than committing them to a single interest or art medium. Drop in between 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. any day of the week to access the open studio space, arts exploration rooms and a myriad of classes available. If you enjoy your experience (and want to save quite a bit of money!) you can become a member to access unlimited time in the open studio and exploration rooms, plus weekly art classes!
Soar to the Sky at Sky Zone
Get some energy out at Sky Zone in Rocklin, an indoor trampoline park with non-stop bouncing excitement for everyone. Attractions at Sky Zone include the infamous freestyle jump area, ultimate dodgeball, the Foam Zone, Sky Slam, and the Warped Wall. Keep in mind that Sky Zone may be best for older kids who can enjoy some of the more intense attractions, but there is no age limit enforced!
Climb to the Top at Rocknasium
Test your limits at Rocknasium in Davis, an indoor rock climbing and fitness facility. The gym has been focused on their community and climbing since opening their doors in 1992 and is one of the oldest climbing gyms in the country! Rocknasium caters to kids with after-school classes, summer camps and monthly youth program memberships.
Grab a Bite to Eat at a Family-Friendly Restaurant
Photo Courtesy of Skipolini’s
One of the most frustrating endeavors for parents is finding a suitable place to eat as a family. Thankfully, there are plenty of family-friendly restaurants in the Sacramento area, catering to all ages with kids’ menus, lively environments and a wait staff that understands the chaos that can ensue at the table.
Skipolini’s takes family-friendly dining to the next level with an indoor play place at their Rocklin location. Kids can climb and play while waiting for their meal (and adults can have a kid-free conversation!). With plenty of televisions playing sports games, a diverse menu with plenty of pizzas, appetizers, paninis, pastas and other Italian favorites, Skipolini’s is an exciting destination for the whole family at both their Folsom and Rocklin locations.
Stretch Out Your Legs at Climbaroo Indoor Play Center
Every day is a party at Climbaroo Indoor Play Center, an exciting indoor play place in Natomas. Let the little ones climb and play while you enjoy a bite to eat or a refreshment from Kangaroo Cafe. Climbaroo is open for “open play” Monday through Friday from 9:30 a.m.–6 p.m. and occasionally on weekends (check their Facebook page for updated hours). Plus, Friday night (from 6–10 p.m.) is Family Night at Climbaroo!
Conduct an Experiment at Powerhouse Science Center
Powerhouse Science Center is an interactive natural history museum with a myriad of exhibits, after-school programs and summer programs. This cutting-edge museum aims to engage and inspire visitors of all ages to explore the wonders, possibilities and responsibilities of science. The Powerhouse Science Center focuses on STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education and hands-on learning. While the museum is currently located north of Arden-Arcade, it will move to a new state-of-the-art building along the Sacramento riverfront in 2020.
Explore Planes at the Aerospace Museum of California
Photo Courtesy of the Aerospace Museum of California
Experience aviation and aerospace history in an interactive setting at the Aerospace Museum of California, a popular museum perfect for the future pilot in your family. Visit the airpark, explore the aircraft exhibits, and take a ride in the new Morphis Simulator. With interactive STEM exhibits and over 40 aircraft on site, this is a dream come true for aviation fanatics of all ages.
See a Show at the Rocklin Community Theatre
While there are a number of wonderful performing arts theatres throughout the region, Rocklin Community Theatre is one that often tailors its content and environment to its littlest audience members. The theatre produces a yearly season of at least six shows, featuring children, high schoolers and adults. Each show has a specified age, such as ages 8–16 or ages 16+ to help you choose the right show for your family! Rocklin Community Theatre produces both musical theatre standards such as South Pacific and Oklahoma!, and a number of “new classics” like Jekyll and Hyde and The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. Plus, the theatre offers classes for children, teens, and adults focused on skills like acting, singing and dancing!
Hop on Board the Sacramento RiverTrain
There are few things more magical than a train ride for a child! Hop on board the Sacramento RiverTrain for a refreshing view of the city and surrounding landscape. The rail line spans 14 miles from West Sacramento to Woodland, traveling at a leisurely 10–15 miles per hour. The Sacramento RiverTrain offers a wide variety of excursions, ranging from boozy adults-only experiences to kid-friendly rides, like the Trick-or-Treat Train, the Holiday Excursion Train, the Pumpkin Train, the Easter Egg Express, the Great Train Robbery, and more.
What kid-approved activities does your family enjoy?
We’d love to know! Comment below with suggestions.