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What To Do For 36 Hours In Sacramento, California

36 hours in sacramento
Isha
Isha
Updated

As the capital of the state of California, Sacramento is a place of significance in the U.S. This city is defined by its Native American and Gold Rush history when thousands of pioneers arrived. Both have contributed immensely to making Northern California what it is today. The city has countless amazing attractions that will delight both locals and visitors alike, including Old Sacramento Waterfront, Sacramento Historic Cemetery, State Indian Museum, McKinley Park to Tower Cafe, and Capitol Casino - there is something for everyone! And if you’re in the city for a short stay, scroll down to know more about what to do for 36 hours in Sacramento, California.

Day 1: Afternoon

Grab a burger and beer lunch at Burgers and Brew

Burger and beer
Source: Unsplash

Begin your 36 hours in Sacramento with an awesome burger lunch at a local favourite, Burgers and Brew. The restaurant was founded more than 10 years ago and has since opened multiple branches both in Sacramento and other cities in California. They are well-known for their craft beer and burgers made from fresh ingredients, including 100% Niman Ranch meat. Choose from over 30 craft beers on tap and 25 unique burgers like buffalo burger, veggie burger, or avocado cheeseburger and pair it with Gladiator Fries and onion rings. Stop by to grab a burger and a cold one before you commence your tour of the city.

Burgers and Brew

Address: 1409 R St #105, Sacramento, CA 95811, United States

Website: Burgers and Brew

Opening hours: Sun - Wed: 11am - 12am; Thu - Sat: 11am - 3am

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Sacramento, Greater Sacremento, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in Sacramento, Greater Sacremento, US

Learn about California's rich history at California Museum

19th century survey equipment, lantern and rail, courtesy of California State Parks as displayed in "Making the Grade:...

Posted by California Museum on Thursday, 9 May 2019

After lunch, make your way down to California Museum, a treasure trove of interactive experiences detailing the life and times of California and Californians throughout the ages. The museum aims to educate and enlighten visitors about the city’s rich history, diversity, and impact on the world in terms of culture, art, entertainment, and innovation. At the museum, explore a range of interesting permanent exhibits that tell a unique story about the history of California. Signature exhibits at the museum include the California Hall of Fame. Various short-term exhibits are also held here from time to time.

California Museum

Address: 1020 O St, Sacramento, CA 95814, United States

Website: California Museum

Opening hours: Tue - Sat: 10am - 5pm; Sun: 12pm - 5pm (closed on Mon)

Price: 6.50 - 9 USD

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Sacramento, Greater Sacremento, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in Sacramento, Greater Sacremento, US

Explore the old-world charm of Old Sacramento Waterfront District (from USD 20.0)

36 hours in sacramento | explore the old-world charm of old sacramento waterfront district

Located along the beautiful Sacramento River, Old Sacramento Waterfront District is a unique, 28-acre (11.33 hectares) National Historic Landmark District and State Historic Park that is a must-visit destination in the city. This district is the perfect place to glimpse life in California during the Gold Rush era of the 19th century. It has many restored buildings, horse-drawn carriages, wooden sidewalks, and other quaint features that you can spend an enjoyable afternoon exploring. Plus, there are various modern attractions to enjoy here, including more than 125 shopping, dining, entertainment, and cultural events.

Sacramento Historic River Cruise

Duration: 1 hour

10 reviews

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Day 1: Evening

Admire the rich variety of roses at World Peace Rose Garden

State Capitol World Peace Rose Garden Sacramento, California

Posted by International World Peace Rose Gardens on Saturday, 6 April 2019

Situated in State Capitol Park, World Peace Rose Garden is a beautiful and serene garden created by the International World Peace Rose Gardens (IWPRG) organisation. With an aim to inspire visitors to be better persons and world citizens, this 0.42-acre (0.16-hectares), Victorian-style garden in Sacramento is a lovely place to spend a late afternoon admiring over 650 roses in hundreds of varieties, fragrances, and colours. Additionally, the beautifully landscaped gardens feature a Peace Pavilion with inspirational messages from the youth, a fountain, courtyard, and a lovely, heart-shaped seating area.

World Peace Rose Garden

Address: Downtown Sacramento in State Capitol Park, 15th St, Sacramento, CA 95814, United States

Website: World Peace Rose Garden

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Watch a Broadway-style musical at Broadway Sacramento

Congratulations to the cast and crew of A Christmas Story, the Musical! Thanks to our show sponsor Macy's Downtown and...

Posted by Broadway Sacramento on Monday, 18 November 2019

As Sacramento’s largest and most popular musical theatre venue, Broadway Sacramento should be your first stop for the evening. It specialises in producing and presenting quality theatrical productions that can be enjoyed by both locals and visitors. Their popular Broadway At Music Circus and Broadway On Tour series present a variety of Broadway-style musicals that will surely entertain and delight you.

Broadway Sacramento

Address: 1510 J St #200, Sacramento, CA 95814, United States

Website: Broadway Sacramento

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Tuck into scrumptious seafood at Station 16

Posted by Station 16 Seafood Restaurant & Bar on Friday, 1 November 2019

If all the sight-seeing and live entertainment have made you hungry, head on over to the heart of Sacramento to enjoy delicious seafood at Station 16. In the sleek and trendy interiors or outdoor dining areas, guests can sample fresh seafood, California classics, and a variety of beverages. Customer favourites at this family-owned restaurant are the lobster mac ‘n cheese, clam chowder, blackened salmon, and the fresh oyster bar. The friendly service and welcoming ambience will surely set the tone for the rest of your evening.

Station 16

Address: 1118 16th St, Sacramento, CA 95814, United States

Website: Station 16

Opening hours: Mon - Thu: 11am - 10pm; Fri - Sat: 11am - 12am; Sun: 10am - 10pm

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Sacramento, Greater Sacremento, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in Sacramento, Greater Sacremento, US

Day 1: Night

Sip on a beer, sangria or wine at Karma Brew

Sangria
Source: Unsplash

Start your first night in Sacramento with a drink at Karma Brew. Well-known in the city for serving beer, wines, and tapas, this watering hole is the perfect place to chill out before heading out for a late night. The interior of this bar is cosy with a Bohemian vibe, and the staff is very friendly. There are rotating beers on tap, a selection of fine wines, sangrias, mulled wine, and ciders to sip on. Platters for sharing, paninis, salads, soups, and some tapas are available to nibble on.

Karma Brew

Address: 1530 16th St. Sacramento, California 95814

Website: Karma Brew

Opening hours: Sun - Tue: 2pm - 12am; Wed - Sat: 2pm - 2am

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Admire some art while sipping on fresh juice at Luna's Cafe and Juice Bar

Hope you're enjoying your #ExtraShot of weekend! How are you spending the extra time off, #Sacramento? #MemorialDay #3DayWeekend #Salud2Sac

Posted by Luna's Cafe on Saturday, 23 May 2015

Continue your conversation and head out into the night to another popular Sacramento establishment, Luna’s Cafe and Juice Bar. After all the dining and wining, hydrate yourself with a glass of freshly squeezed juice or licuado (a Latin American blended drink) and nourish your body with a quesadilla or a sandwich from this cafe. Another interesting thing about this place is that it doubles as an art gallery with original art on display on the walls. Live entertainment is also available on certain days of the week.

Luna's Cafe and Juice Bar

Address: 1414 16th St, Sacramento, CA 95814, United States

Website: Luna’s Cafe and Juice Bar

Opening hours: Mon - Wed: 10am - 3:30pm, 6:30pm - 10pm; Thu: 10am - 3:30pm, 6:30pm - 11pm; Fri: 10am - 3:30pm, 6:30pm - 12am; Sat: 6:30pm - 12am (closed on Sun)

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Sacramento, Greater Sacremento, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in Sacramento, Greater Sacremento, US

Day 2: Morning

Have an award-winning French toast for breakfast at Tower Cafe

Everyday....SEASONAL FRENCH TOAST 1/2 order of our Famous French Toast with seasonal fruit compote and house made whipped cream

Posted by Tower Cafe on Sunday, 17 April 2016

Rise and shine and head out early on your second day in Sacramento to make a beeline for Tower Cafe and enjoy a big breakfast. This place specialises in serving global cuisine for breakfast, brunch, lunch, and dinner in a very eclectic and colourful setting. The dining area is decorated with quirky display pieces from around the world. For breakfast, try their award-winning French toast - they describe it as ‘a custard soaked slice of heaven’ - New Mexico blueberry cornmeal pancakes, and Thai steak and eggs. Delicious coffee or tea is available too.

Tower Cafe

Address: 1518 Broadway, Sacramento, CA 95818, United States

Website: Tower Cafe

Opening hours: Sun - Thu: 8am - 10pm; Fri - Sat: 8am - 11pm;

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Visit the Victorian gardens of Sacramento Historic Cemetery

Sacramento Historic City Cemetery view
Source: Photo by user CSvBibra used under CC0

Though it may seem strange to make a cemetery your first stop for the morning, trust us when we tell you that Sacramento Historic Cemetery is a very popular tourist attraction. It is designed to look like a Victorian garden that was popular in the mid and late 1800s and is said to be one of the finest cemeteries in the country. Covering 44 acres (17.8 hectares), it is the final resting place of several notable Sacramento citizens, about 25,000 pioneers, immigrants, politicians, and historical figures. Besides the majestic gravestones and historic epitaphs, there are three beautiful gardens blooming with seasonal flowers that you must definitely visit.

Sacramento Historic Cemetery

Address: 1000 Broadway, Sacramento, CA 95818, United States

Website: Sacramento Historic Cemetery

Opening hours: 7am - 5pm (daily)

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Look at hundreds of wildlife species at Sacramento Zoo

Does your little one LOVE animals? 🧡 Sign them up for one of our Little Peeps programs! This program is for 3-5...

Posted by Sacramento Zoo on Thursday, 3 October 2019

Spend the rest of your morning looking at the marvellous wildlife at Sacramento Zoo. More than 90 years old, this zoo is home to hundreds of endangered, rare, and native animal species. There are African lions, jaguars, chimpanzees, lemurs, giraffes, turtles and tortoises, snakes, and many more amazing wildlife species to look at. Many educational programmes, rides, interactive experiences, walking paths, and picnic areas are also available for you to enjoy.

Sacramento Zoo

Address: 3930 W Land Park Dr, Sacramento, CA 95822, United States

Website: Sacramento Zoo

Opening hours: 9am - 4pm (daily)

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Day 2: Afternoon

Enjoy Mexican fine dining at Cielito Lindo Mexican Gastronomy


After a busy morning of exploring the city, go to Cielito Lindo Mexican Gastronomy for a superb Mexican lunch. In the colourful and spacious dining room of this fine dining restaurant, you can sample dishes made by combining traditional recipes with modern techniques. Highly recommended dishes are their enchiladas de mole poblano (chicken stuffed tortillas covered in traditional mole sauce), tacos de arrachera (corn tortillas filled with flank steak, marinated poblano pepper, and avocado), and guacamole (smashed avocado mixed with sliced jalapenos, tomatoes and onions).

Cielito Lindo Mexican Gastronomy

Address: 3672 J St, Sacramento, CA 95816, United States

Website: Cielito Lindo Mexican Gastronomy

Opening hours: Mon - Thu: 11:30am - 2pm, 5pm - 8pm; Fri: 11:30am - 2pm, 5pm - 9pm; Sat: 4pm - 9pm (closed on Sun)

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Sacramento, Greater Sacremento, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in Sacramento, Greater Sacremento, US

Take a leisurely stroll through Sutter's Landing Regional Park


Work off your heavy lunch by taking a leisurely stroll through Sutter’s Landing Regional Park located in the centre of the city. It is a nature park that serves as an outdoor recreation area for residents and visitors, and it is also a habitat for many native wildlife species. One of the many features of the park is a multi-use trail along the American River Parkway where you can walk, jog, or cycle. Basketball and bocce ball courts, skate park, dog park, walkways, decorative pavings, seating areas, interpretive signs, and landscaping are some other amenities of this place.

Sutter's Landing Regional Park

Address: 20 28th St, Sacramento, CA 95816, United States

Website: Sutter’s Landing Regional Park

Opening hours: Mon - Fri: 4pm - 9pm; Sat - Sun: 12pm - 9pm

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Sacramento, Greater Sacremento, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in Sacramento, Greater Sacremento, US

Learn about the life of Native Americans at State Indian Museum

Tule Creations, drums, and art

Posted by California State Indian Museum on Monday, 17 December 2012

Conveniently located in the downtown area, State Indian Museum should be your last stop for the afternoon. Open since 1940, this museum is dedicated to educating the public about the life, culture, history, beliefs, arts, and crafts of the Native Americans who have lived in this area for thousands of years. Through photographs, artworks, and other exhibits, visitors can glimpse into the past of these native people. The museum also displays a large collection of centuries-old cultural items like traditional baskets, ceremonial regalia, hunting and fishing tools, and more. At the museum store, you can buy native soapstone carvings, jewellery, handmade baskets, and books.

State Indian Museum

Address: 2618 K St, Sacramento, CA 95816, United States

Opening hours: 10am - 5pm (daily)

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Day 2: Evening

Spend some time people-watching at McKinley Park

Bench View
Source: Photo by user Janice Marie Foote used under CC BY 2.0

For your first stop of the evening, make your way to McKinley Park, a park that’s popular with locals for its numerous amenities. Enjoy people-watching as locals stroll in for an evening walk or run along the jogging trail. A beautiful rose garden and several children’s play areas attract many families here. A number of sports amenities like a swimming and wading pool, tennis, basketball and volleyball courts, soccer and softball fields are available too.

McKinley Park

Address: 601 Alhambra Blvd, Sacramento, CA 95816, United States

Website: McKinley Park

Opening hours: 8am - 8:30pm (daily)

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Sacramento, Greater Sacremento, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in Sacramento, Greater Sacremento, US

Try your luck with a game of poker at Capitol Casino

Poker
Source: Unsplash

As Sacramento’s largest card room, Capitol Casino is believed to be a favourite among the locals for poker games. This licensed cardroom offers various other games like blackjack, baccarat, and pai gow, among others, that you can try your hand at. It is conveniently located in downtown Sacramento and offers attentive service, several daily promotions, and a range of dining options. So, make your way down to Capitol Casino and play a game of poker - who knows, you just might win the jackpot!

Capitol Casino

Address: 411 N 16th St, Sacramento, CA 95811, United States

Website: Capitol Casino

Opening hours: 24 hours (daily)

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Sacramento, Greater Sacremento, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in Sacramento, Greater Sacremento, US

Dine in style at the old-school Moxie Restaurant

Salmon
Source: Pixabay

Radiating old-world charm in a dining room that has mood lighting and dozens of framed pictures on the walls, Moxie Restaurant is the best place to have a memorable early dinner on your last night in the city. The menu is not very extensive, but they make up for it with their long list of daily specials that are certainly worth considering. This establishment mostly serves American cuisine, and recommended dishes here are the lamb special, crusted salmon, and scallops with lobster sauce. The waitstaff can also suggest the perfect wine to pair with your meal.

Moxie Restaurant

Address: 2028 H St, Sacramento, CA 95811, United States

Opening hours: Tue - Thu: 5pm - 9pm; Fri - Sat: 5pm - 10pm (closed on Sun & Mon)

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Sacramento, Greater Sacremento, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in Sacramento, Greater Sacremento, US

Day 2: Night

Enjoy a game of pool at Old Tavern Bar and Grill

Dive bar with pool table
Source: Unsplash

Make your way to Old Tavern Bar and Grill for some after-dinner drinks and a game of pool. At this vibrant neighbourhood dive bar, you will see friendly locals chilling with their buddies over a pint of beer, an arcade game, or a game of pool. The bar has a cosy indoor seating area and a huge patio to enjoy your preferred libations in. A vast selection of beer, spirits, cocktails, and other beverages are available here, along with some scrumptious bar grub.

Old Tavern Bar and Grill

Address: 1510 20th St, Sacramento, CA 95811, United States

Website: Old Tavern Bar and Grill

Opening hours: 6am - 2am (daily)

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Sacramento, Greater Sacremento, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in Sacramento, Greater Sacremento, US

Watch a live music show at Holy Diver

🤘 . . #Repost @alyssajomedia @artisvns 10.02.19 @holydiversac

Posted by Holy Diver on Friday, 8 November 2019

For an epic end to an epic 36-hour trip to Sacramento, visit Holy Diver for a live music show. This is a revamped music venue in midtown Sacramento that features shows suitable for all ages. It has a nice dive bar feel that many locals enjoy, along with a full bar, pizza place, and an amazing lineup of local and national artists. You can go in before the start of the show, have a drink, and relax before the music starts playing.

Holy Diver

Address: 1517 21st St, Sacramento, CA 95811, United States

Website: Holy Diver

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Sacramento, Greater Sacremento, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in Sacramento, Greater Sacremento, US

Sensational Sacramento!

The buzzing city of Sacramento has a range of attractions that will appeal to every kind of visitor. From museums and parks to dive bars, the city has no dearth of things to see and do. For your trip to this amazing city, do remember to refer to our guide of what to do for 36 hours in Sacramento, California.

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.

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Isha is a former corporate nobody. She lives a quiet life of travelling, writing, and minding her own business.

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