Top Things to Do in Auburn, CA
Auburn is a quaint town in the Sierra foothills known for its Gold Rush history. The restored Old Town has mid-19th century buildings that are now home to vibrant restaurants, bars and shops. With history around every corner, it’s no wonder the entire town is a California Historical Landmark. It’s an outdoor lover’s paradise with a thriving arts scene, great wineries and craft breweries, and amazing restaurants. See more about this charming town in the video below!
Enjoy Farm-Fresh Produce
Photo courtesy Placer Grown
Auburn is the county seat, meaning it has easy access to the fresh produce grown on Placer County farms. Placer Grown hosts several markets throughout the county, but the one located in Old Town Auburn is open year round. In addition to fruits and veggies, you’ll also find natural meats, olive oil, honey, nuts, jams and preserves and other items. You can also have a taste of Placer County produce at Machado Orchards, known for their fresh-baked pies and Artemis Farms, which offers heirloom tomato tasting.
Immerse Yourself in the Arts
Photo courtesy Auburn Old Town Gallery
Auburn is an arts-centered community that prides itself on its talented, creative artists. In addition to the many art galleries around town, Placer Arts holds several events throughout the year, including studio tours, art walks, artist receptions and more. The Auburn Old Town Gallery is an artists collective that showcases everything from paintings and ceramics to photography and jewelry. They also host classes and workshops. In addition to visual art, Auburn is also well-regarded for its performing art. The Auburn State Theatre hosts classic film screenings, concerts and performances by its in-house theater company. Auburn also has its own symphony, whose community orchestra performs throughout the year. In the summer, you can hear live music at the Auburn Art Commission’s summer concert series.
Enjoy the Great Outdoors
Photo courtesy Sierra Whitewater Rafting
Its location near the American River Canyon means Auburn is centrally located for a plethora of outdoor recreation! The Auburn State Recreation Area features miles and miles of trails for hiking, bike riding and horseback riding, with many trails beginning at the confluence of the middle and north forks of the American River. You can go kayaking, whitewater rafting, boating and swimming on the rivers and lakes, including Lake Clementine, which also has an impressive dam. Bike riding is also big here, and trails include the Dry Creek Parkway and those within Hidden Falls Regional Park. Golfers can play a round at The Ridge Golf Course.
Test Your Endurance
Photos courtesy of Way Too Cool Endurance Run
Did you know Auburn is the Endurance Capital of the World? It is is home to some of the most challenging and historic endurance events on the planet, such as the Way Too Cool Endurance Run for long-distance runners and the Tevis Cup 100-mile ride for equestrians. It is known for hosting more outdoor endurance events than any other community in the world. Other events include the Western States Endurance Run, American River Endurance Run, Auburn Triathlon, American River Classic Equestrian Ride, Great Auburn Epic Race and FOUR-midable 50K. Whether you’re into trail running, road cycling, mountain biking, whitewater competitions or swimming, Auburn has an event for you!
Taste Local Beer or Wine
Photo courtesy Auburn Wine, Ale & Food Festival
Auburn has long been a destination for beer lovers. Several local breweries are producing award-winning beers. Breweries include Crooked Lane Brewing Company, which was named Brewery of the Year during the 2019 California Craft Brewers Cup; Knee Deep Brewing Co., known for its Hoptologist IPA and Hola Señor lager; and Moonraker Brewing, whose specialty is hazy IPAs.
The Auburn area also has a burgeoning wine scene. Warm summer days cooled by evening mountain breezes mean Italian varietals and Syrah do well here. Taste them all at Fawnridge Winery, Lone Buffalo Vineyards, Mt. Vernon Winery, PaZa Wines, Pruett Vineyard and Vina Castellano. Wine is also celebrated at events, including the Auburn Wine, Ale & Food Festival.
Grab a Bite to Eat
Photo courtesy Keith Sutter via Carpe Vino
Hungry yet? There are dozens of restaurants in Auburn to indulge your cravings. One to try is Old Town Pizza, which serves colossal pizzas, salads and other casual fare such as sandwiches and salads. At Auburn Alehouse, you can sample award-winning craft brew alongside elevated pub fare, including burgers, sandwiches and tacos. For something a bit more refined, book a table at Carpe Vino. The seasonal menu features dishes such as seared dayboat scallops with caramelized carrots and Mishima wagyu sirloin with sweet corn sabayon. Plus, they have large wine list with selections from across the globe.
Make Yourself at Home
If you enjoy your visit to Auburn enough to linger a little longer, you might be happy to find out that this town is a wonderful place to call home. In fact, Livability included Auburn in their list of Top 100 Small Towns in the U.S. The area has a diverse range of housing options, from family-friendly neighborhoods in town to country estates a bit farther afield. Spend a day in Auburn and you may be tempted to settle down here yourself!