Fun Things to Do in Midtown Sacramento

As the New York Times says, Sacramento is Cool With its thriving cultural scene, striking architecture and lush vegetation, this often overlooked California city — the photogenic backdrop of the movie “Lady Bird” — has much to offer the weekend visitor. As a travel destination, California’s capital gets no respect. Despite sitting at the confluence of two impressive rivers, with sprawling shade trees that makes Midtown Sacramento feel like a leafy urban park, Sacramento has a misplaced reputation as a lowly, unattractive place. But the state’s oldest incorporated city — founded in 1849, the year before California joined the union — remains a lush oasis of bougainvillea and palms, prolific fruit trees and mighty oaks.


See The Abandoned Sutter’s Fort. Before the Gold Rush that changed the face of California forever, the community focused around Sutter’s Fort. Created by John Sutter in 1839 the fort was a hive of activity until James W. Marshall an employee of the fort discovered the gold (about 45 miles east of the fort) that started the Californian Gold Rush, after this the fort was abandoned and left as it was. The fort has now been completely restored to its former glory and placed on the register of National Historic Landmarks. The main building of the fort is the two story adobe structure, it was in that very building that the first gold was found that started the Gold Rush. Sutter’s Fort, originally called “New Helvetia” (New Switzerland), has served as a trading post, a rehabilitation point for Donner Party survivors and a refugee camp for people displaced by the 1906 earthquake in San Francisco.

See A Show At The B Street Theatre. The B Street Theatre has become something of an institution in Sacramento and the critics keep coming back for more great shows. The mission of the theater is to promote both education and literacy, they do this by creating shows that are of the highest quality. The theater has been going strong for nearly 30 years and in that time the traveling part of the theater has performed in front of approximately 3.6 million students from California. The Sacramento News has awarded this place the ‘Best Live Theatre’ 14 years in a row. Photo is of the yet-to-be built new and relocated B Street Theatre.

Browse through a ton of art during Second Saturday. Second Saturday, during which art galleries around town host open houses, is held on the second Saturday of every month. Start at 18th and J Sts or CLARA at 24th and N and walk your way through the open doors. Stop by galleries to browse through art, drink wine, eat some snacks and enjoy live music performances.

Visit an urban winery at Revolution Wines. Sacramento may be surrounded by wine country (Lodi, Amador County and El Dorado County are just a short drive away), but the city has its own winery right in Midtown. Grab a seat at the bar, try a flight and check out the happy hour menu. Revolution Wines also serves vino by the glass, small bites and a full lunch and dinner menu. In case you’re wondering, all the wines are made from local grapes—as in grapes grown just down the highway.

Learn About Indian Life At California State Indian Museum. In 1940 the California State Indian Museum opened its door to the public with the mission of showing of three different themes to the public. The themes reflect all that is important to the Indian life; Spirit, family and nature. The museum is full of photographs and artifacts that show off how the Indians prospered in California for thousands of years. You will get to see many traditional items that have been donated by the native Indians as well as an exhibition focused on Ishi. Ishi is reported to have been the last survivor of the Yahi tribe.

Take A Ride On The Sac Brew Bike. The Sac Brew Bike is perfect for groups that want to spend their time doing something different. Here you and your friends can jump aboard this multi-person bike and go for a group cycle around some of Sacramento’s best drinking and eating spots. You all jump on and get peddling whilst the driver operates the steering to make sure you are still going in the right direction after a few drinks. A completely unique experience to the city and one that is worth doing as it is not often you can exercise and have fun at the same time.

Pick produce at a farmers market. If you’re looking for artisan products and Belgian waffles, check out the very hip Midtown Farmers Market at 21st and J. Open year-round, the market showcases vendors from across the region, all selling organic fruits, herbs, baked goods and more. Take advantage of living in our agriculturally rich region by enjoying farm-to-you fresh produce. You’ll find tomatoes, corn, cucumbers, zucchini, sweet Bronx grapes, spinach, lettuce, herbs, winter squash, persimmons, pomegranates, mandarins, sunchokes . . . the list goes on and on.

Shop for vintage finds at Scout Living. One of Sacramento’s vintage stores, Scout Living is any mid-century modern lover’s dream. From Danish modern pieces to vinyl and vintage clothing, this shop’s collection is eye candy for anyone who loves design.

Look up to the trees. Did you know that Sacramento has been referred to as the “City of Trees”? And with good reason: From the palm trees on the perimeter of Capitol Park to the river birch on the banks of McKinley Park pond to the eucalyptus trees of the University Arboretum at Sacramento State and the verdant archways over midtown’s streets, our trees shade us from summer sun and show us their colors come fall. Explore for yourself: The Sacramento Tree Foundation has maps of popular parks and the trees that inhabit them.

Befriend the hipsters in the Handle District. These few square blocks of Midtown hold some of the city’s trendiest places to eat, drink and shop. Look for the murals and head to the alley for house-roasted coffee at Old Soul, have a beer at Fieldwork or a gluten-free brunch at Pushkin’s, pair a glass of wine with a cheese board at The Rind, and do some fair trade shopping at Zanzibar. Don’t forget to indulge in the city’s best chocolate at Ginger Elizabeth.

Wide Open Walls. Sacramento is home to some seriously good street art, in fact more than 600 murals in total! Sacramento has been showing its love for street art in recent years. The result? Hundreds of colorful murals lining walls all over town. The Wide Open Walls festival brings artists from around the world to paint new murals every August. Just walk the streets of Downtown and Midtown Sacramento to catch amazing art. Some standouts include the murals at 20th and K, 28th and R, and starting at the 3000 block of Power Inn Rd.

Sip a Cocktail. The cocktail scene in Sacramento has really been gaining momentum over the past few years with creative bartenders using only the highest quality local ingredients. Some favorites are Red Rabbit, Hook & Ladder, and Shady Lady Saloon. A few of my favorites are the Moscow Mule at Hook & Ladder (offered during their Happy Hour), the berry margarita at Zocalo, and the Krakow Salt Mine at Red Rabbit.

Midtown Sacramento Restaurants


List Created by Sacramento Top 10

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