15 Best Things To Do In And Around Manteca, California - Updated 2021

things to do in manteca california

Manteca is a city with an interesting history. It was founded in 1861 by a man named Joshua Cowell and, when the townspeople came to name their town, they wanted it to have the same name as the train station built there. Their initial intention was to name it after its founder, until they found that there was already a Cowell station at the town of Tracy, also located in San Joaquin County. Their next choice was to call it “Monteca”; however, a misprint when they filed the papers meant it came back as “Manteca” - the Spanish for “Lard”. Rather than refile the papers, the people decided they quite liked the idea of a town-wide in-joke around the name of their city. So “Manteca” it remained. This fact tells you a lot about Manteca, its people and the way of life there. It’s a place for people who don’t take life too seriously, are easy-going and appreciate the chance to have a bit of fun. For any visitor there are plenty of sights to see, day trips to take and a wealth of interesting experiences to have. Here’s our list of the best things to do in and around Manteca, California.

1. Browse top outdoor gear at Bass Pro Shops

Bass Pro Shops
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Ethan Prater used under CC BY 2.0

If you’re an enthusiastic outdoorsman, then browsing the wares at Bass Pro Shops is heaven. The ultimate destination in Manteca for every kind of outdoor equipment, Bass Pro Shops is a popular sporting-goods chain that offers an expansive establishment adorned in a woodsy wilderness-inspired atmosphere. A large assortment of expert fishing, hunting, camping, and essential outdoor gear comprise the bulk of Bass Pro Shops’ merchandise. Whether you’re planning an elaborate family camping trip or an overnight fishing expedition with friends Bass Pro Shops is a must-visit venue.

Bass Pro Shops

Address: 1356 Bass Pro Dr, Manteca, CA 95337

Website: Bass Pro Shops

Opening hours: Mon - Sat: 9am - 8pm; Sun: 10am - 7pm

2. Savor hearty grub at Chuck's Place

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

50/50 Ground Bacon and Beef Sliders. It’s a game changer.

Posted by Chuck's Place Sports Cafe' on Friday, November 13, 2020

If you’re looking for a place to unwind in a relaxed atmosphere, then search no further than Chuck’s Place. This laid-back pub-style eatery is popular with locals and serves a menu packed with classic American indulgencies with a flair of innovative deliciousness. Comfort food never tasted so good, from the yummy bacon cheese tots to the juicy pastrami sandwiches. The bar features a tantalizing selection of craft beers on tap and handcrafted cocktails are prepared by friendly mixologists. Large TV screens for optimum sports viewing are on hand too.

Chuck's Place

Address: 1447 Historical Plaza Way, Manteca, CA 95336

Website: Chuck’s Place

Opening hours: 11:30am - 2am (daily)

3. Sharpen your shooting skills at Manteca Sportsmen Inc

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

Working on Winchester marksmanship program....

Posted by Manteca Sportsmen, Inc. on Monday, January 27, 2014

Manteca Sportsmen Inc provides fabulous on-site facilities for a variety of shooting: rifle, shotgun, and pistol. Open-range hours are available where you can fire off rounds solo or you can opt to join classes, events, or training activities that are on hand for persons of all skill levels - including novices. If you want to aim at a different target, Manteca Sportsmen Inc even offers fun-filled archery action. Be assured this shooting range provides a safe environment with a professional staff.

Manteca Sportsmen Inc

Address: 30261 S Airport Way, Manteca, CA 95337

Website: Manteca Sportsmen Inc

Opening hours: 8am - 4:30pm (daily)

Price: 20 - 8 USD

4. Indulge in rejuvenating splendor at The Spa on Yosemite

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

NTRODUCING: Hot Lava Shell Massage! This service includes hand-selected Codacia shells from the Philippine Islands that...

Posted by The Spa on Yosemite on Tuesday, July 2, 2019

The Spa on Yosemite is the ultimate destination for anyone who feels stressed and depleted. Pampering for the mind, body, and soul is available at this premier day spa. Lose yourself in luxurious treatments from classic Swedish massage to more cutting-edge choices like a hot-lava-shell massage. Organic facials and contour body wraps offer soothing head-to-toe relief. Fine services are available for women and men. The staff is friendly, professional, and dedicated to giving guests a supreme replenishing experience.

The Spa on Yosemite

Address: 318 E Yosemite Ave, Manteca, CA 95336

Website: The Spa on Yosemite

Opening hours: 9am - 6pm (daily)

5. Spend family time at Great Wolf Lodge Water Park

Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing

Touted as the top-notch indoor water park in the Bay Area, Great Wolf Lodge Water Park is the perfect getaway for families. At a balmy 84 degrees Fahrenheit (29 degrees Celsius), this spectacular water park is a comfortable oasis of watery delights on Manteca’s landscape. Any child’s eyes will pop at the sight of Fort Mackenzie—a towering four-story treehouse-style structure with fun interactive water toys and child-activated splash action. Other highlights include Slap Tail Pond and Otter Run that afford you twisting and turning water slide excitement at lightning-quick speed! Purchase tickets online to find out what time you may enter the park.

Great Wolf Lodge Water Park

Address: 19088 McKinley Ave, Manteca, CA 95337

Website: Great Wolf Lodge Water Park

Price: 80 USD

6. Spend relaxed bliss at Northgate Park

Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing

One of Manteca’s best public parks, Northgate Park is an ideal spot to take advantage of a warm, sunny day. This park is awash in tall leafy trees and offers a paved walking trail. A collection of picnic tables and barbecue grills lets you enjoy a pleasant cookout with family and friends, plus a fun horseshoe pit and sandy volleyball area only enhance your visit. Youngsters can roam the open spaces and have hours of fun on the expert playground equipment that includes a “tot lot”. There is a selection of sports fields and convenient, tidy restrooms.

Northgate Park

Address: 1750 Hoyt Ln, Manteca, CA 95336

Opening hours: 24 hours (daily)

Price: Free

7. Take in a movie at the AMC Movie Theater

AMC Movie Theater
Source: Photo by Flickr user Dave Dugdale used under CC BY-SA 2.0

Photo is only for illustrative purposes

So, yes, a cinema is a cinema, and marking one out as a high point of a city may seem like faint praise. But what sets Manteca’s AMC theater apart is its lush setting and the luxurious comfort of the movie-goer’s experience. Found on Lifestyle Street, this location is set beside a huge man-made lake with water features and makes for a very pleasant walk-up experience. The food and drink options inside are highly rated too - so while you’re planning what to see, you can do so in the maximum of comfort.

AMC Movie Theater Manteca

Address: 848 Lifestyle St, Manteca, CA 95337

Website: AMC Movie Theater Manteca

8. Have a strike-ing time at Manteca Bowl

Bowling Child Game
Source: Pixabay

Photo is only for illustrative purposes

The perfect ingredient for any family vacation, a trip to this vintage bowling alley will feature something for everyone. Of course bowling is on the menu, but there’s a lot more besides, with a well-stocked arcade and a range of “pub games” such as billiard and darts, that will keep the whole family entertained. A couple of hours on the lanes or in the batting cages will be enough to work up an appetite that you can then sate in Rookies’ Pub and Grill. It’s the very definition of a family fun time, especially in the summer when kids get two free bowling games per day - even out of season, though, it’s just 4 USD for adults and 3 USD for kids.

Manteca Bowl

Address: 1251 E Yosemite Ave, Manteca, CA 95336

Website: Manteca Bowl

9. Appreciate the bouquet at Delicato Family Vineyards

Napa Valley Wine Winery
Source: Pixabay

Photo is only for illustrative purposes

California is increasingly a part of the world that is associated with fine wines, and at the forefront of the “New World” producers. Manteca has its own slice of that action with the Delicato family, who have been producing wines for the best part of a century. The sustainable processes and diverse range of grapes used here make for a thrilling range of reds, whites and roses. Better yet, a visit to the tasting room is free; you may not be able to resist taking a few bottles away, though, and those need to be paid for!

Delicato Family Vineyards

Address: 12001 CA-99, Manteca, CA 95336

Website: Delicato Family Vineyards

Nearby options

10. Let the kids explore at Children's Museum of Stockton

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

Posted by Children's Museum of Stockton on Sunday, December 20, 2020

Let your child’s imagination soar at Children’s Museum of Stockton. The sight of the huge and colorful toy soldiers at the entrance of this fantastic museum is enough to excite your little ones. This museum boasts over 40 interesting and interactive exhibits that captivate young minds. If your tyke loves animals, head to the aquatic display that features vibrant fish and easygoing turtles. An art studio and puppet show area standout features. Children’s Museum of Stockton provides a multitude of hands-on experiences to thrill kids of all ages.

Children's Museum of Stockton

Address: 402 W Weber Ave, Stockton, CA 95203

Website: Children’s Museum of Stockton

Opening hours: Wed - Fri: 9am - 4pm; Sat: 10am - 5pm; Sun: 12pm - 5pm (closed on Mon & Tue)

Price: 6 USD

11. Feel the adrenaline rush at Sunshine Rafting Adventures Knights Ferry

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

Posted by Sunshine Rafting Adventures on Sunday, June 28, 2020

Just a 44-minute car ride east of Manteca, Sunshine Rafting Adventures Knights Ferry offers a river rafting adventure that’s a cut above. See the beautiful woodsy Northern California surroundings from a different perspective through paddling down the picturesque Stanislaus River. This self-guided adventure is great for experienced rafters as well as newcomers. The package includes a sturdy raft and necessities such as nifty paddles, life-jackets, and a waterproof box to protect any valuables. A convenient shuttle service is also provided at the end of the excursion.

Sunshine Rafting Adventures Knights Ferry

Address: 18000 Covered Bridge Rd, Knights Ferry, CA 95361

Website: Sunshine Rafting Adventures Knights Ferry

Opening hours: Mon - Fri: 9am - 5pm; Sat - Sun: 9am - 5:30pm

Price: 32 - 45 USD

12. Take a walk in Caswell Memorial State Park

Vitis californica at Caswell Memorial State Park spring leaves
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user [Unknown] used under PUBLIC DOMAIN

A small fact it might be worth knowing about Caswell Park is that in 1973, it was chosen as a filming location for Disney movie “The World’s Greatest Athlete” - and when you step inside you will see why instantly. It’s a beautifully picturesque place to take a walk, sit for a picnic or, if you wish, take advantage of the campground facilities to spend a night or two closer to nature. One bit of advice: take mosquito repellent with you. The little bugs won’t spoil the experience, but they can be irritating.

Caswell Memorial State Park

Address: 28000 S Austin Rd, Ripon, CA 95366

Website: Caswell Memorial State Park

13. Pass some contemplative moments at Wat Dhammararam Buddhist Temple

Los Angeles, Buddhist Temple Thien Hau, 2016.03.27 (03)
Source: Photo by Flickr user Vahe Martirosyan used under CC BY 2.0

Photo is only for illustrative purposes

A warmly welcoming atmosphere awaits you at Wat Dhammararam Buddhist Temple, a Cambodian-style temple which was built by, and is maintained by, volunteers offering their time and more. It’s beautifully colorful and features a thrilling range of statues, arches and general decoration. Located in Stockton, about a quarter of an hour away from Manteca by road, it’s well worth the short trip.

Wat Dhammararam Buddhist Temple

Address: 3732 Carpenter Rd, Stockton, CA 95215

Website: Wat Dhammararam Buddhist Temple

14. Witness wildlife as it should be at San Joaquin River National Wildlife Refuge

San Joaquin River National Wildlife Refuge (39717287494)
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Pacific Southwest... used under PUBLIC DOMAIN

If the trip to Wat Dhammararam has left you in a contemplative mood, then perhaps your next trip should be to the San Joaquin Refuge, set in well-maintained grassland and wetland. Here you will find numerous species of wildlife in their natural habitat; it’s a location which has been pivotal in the conservation of creatures such as the Aleutian cackling goose. Other birds and animals are located and looked after here too - it’s an uplifting experience set among beautiful scenery.

San Joaquin River National Wildlife Refuge

Address: 2714 Dairy Rd, Vernalis, CA 95385

Website: San Joaquin River National Wildlife Refuge

15. Take a tour of the Yosemite Valley (from USD 117.0)

Manteca is located within the Yosemite Valley, not far from Yosemite National Park, which is one of America’s finest natural locations. For a fee of just over 90 USD, you can see some of the most stunning scenery there is to be found anywhere in the US. Yosemite Falls, the Spider Caves and a preserved Pioneer Village are all part of one of the most rewarding tours you could possibly take on holiday. As a delightful side benefit, all profits from this tour go towards supporting a summer youth camp in the area - so you can have a good time and do some good at the same time.

Yosemite Valley Private Hiking Tour

Duration: 8 hours

3 reviews

Come to Manteca and look around - you'll like what you see!

Manteca, as well as its neighboring cities, are in that fine spirit of Californian openness and good times - from the bowling alley to the Buddhist temple, everything is infused with that sense of welcoming. That’s what makes Manteca and the whole San Joaquin region so worth visiting - and once you’re there, you’re sure to find yourself wanting to stay for longer.

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

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Antonia Kelly is a freelance writer based in Leicester, UK and she enjoys European travel as well as road trips closer to home. Her favourite domestic destinations include Snowdonia and the Brecon...Read more

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