Sacramento Area

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Kid-Friendly Sacramento Hotel

  • Sept 2011

    I am desperate for a couple of days of heat before fall sets in and would like to take a family vacation in Sacramento. Does anyone know of somewhere to stay there? I would prefer to stay close to Old Town. Thank you for any information! Searching for Summer

    My family took a memorable 4 day trip to Sacramento when I was a child. We stayed on the Delta Queen. My dad got us 2 rooms with a connecting door and my brother (4) slept on a foldout in their room- my sister and I had the other room. We were 9 and 7. We went to the train museum and old Town. I think we also panned for gold, but that was a drive out of town. We had a great time and whenever I'm in Sac, I remember my first time there as a child. Rachel
    Hi There, We just took Amtrak to Sacramento a couple of weekends ago. We stayed at the Hyatt Regency. Very nice, sweet pool with poolside service (loved that!) and about a 10-15 minute walk from Old Town. Loved the Railroad Museum, too. Would definitely go again and would stay at the Hyatt. Have Fun!
    We like to stay at the Embassy Suites, right in Old Sac. Both times we stayed there, there were tons of kids. They have the complimentary deluxe hot breakfast which includes made-to-order omlettes. In the evening, they have the free happy hour. Free wine and beer for the adults. Beverages for the kids. Popcorn and chex mix other munchables. Pool - kind of cold but the kids don't seem to mind. What's most important to us (besides happy hour), is that there is a separate living space with couch and TV. So when our toddler goes to sleep at 8, we still have a room to hang out in. Happy Travel Family
    We like the Embassy Suites Sacramento. Just cross the street and you're in Old Town Sacramento (or a short walk away from the Railroad Museum--our son's favorite place). Our kids always enjoy the pool. We like the separate rooms that keep peace between the family's night owls and larks. And the breakfasts have something for everybody.

    Things to do in Sacramento with kids

    April 2011

    We're headed to Sacramento for a few days with our 1 year old and 5 year old. We know that we'll spend at least one day at the train museum but wanted to get recommendations for other fun, kid-friendly activities in the area. Has anyone been to Sacramento lately? Have any suggestions for things to do? Thanks Sharie

    A little outside of Sacramento in Folsom (15 minutes) my kids and I really LOVED the Folsom Zoo/animal sanctuary when we lived in the area...Also downtown Folsom is a nice to pass some time (walk over the bridge for a fantastic view of the river)

    There's also Children's Fairyland which is always fun for little kids- it's near the Sacramento Zoo, ...

    Old Sacramento is also an interesting couple of hours--old west style with tons of shops, ice cream/candy stores etc, I think there's a train ride over there also.

    When you drive over the Yolo causeway prior to entering Sacramento, there's a really cool little drive through a bird sanctuary... you don't even have to get out of the car! lisa

    Fairytale Town is great for those ages! I grew up going there and my kids love it when we visit. The Sacramento Zoo is across te street from FTT too and it's a cute, manageable zoo with some cool animals. They're both in William Land Park which has a few ponds where you can feed the ducks -- right next to FTT. Have fun! Grew up in Sacramento
    Art Beast Studio in mid-town is an old Victorian converted into art and play spaces for the under-eight set. It's open from 9-6 daily and costs $8 per person (1 and under free and extra adult with kid/adult also free - so for your family, $16). It is rainy day heaven! Paint, crafts, puppet theater, moon sand - and they clean up. It is also a non-profit. (

    For some grownup fun also, check out the River Cats AAA baseball team. ( The new-ish stadium is just across the river from Old Town. Sloping lawn tickets are under $10, and there are many promotions. Sunday day games are 'kids days' with mascots and running the bases after the game. See your future Oakland A's in a much nicer setting!

    FairyTale Town in Land Park would be really fun and easy for both the 1 and 5 year old.

    McKinley Park in East Sacramento (35th and F) has a big playground, an old-fashioned library, and a duck pond, and is THE place for a jog.

    In downtown, Southside Park at 6th and T has two large playgrounds, but the neighborhood is a little seedy.

    On Sunday mornings under the elevated freeway at about 5th and W/X, there is a farmer's market that is the largest around with lots of local produce, fish, meats and cheese.

    Have fun! Sac Parent

    Birthday party in sacramento/davis for 2-4yo

    April 2011

    I'm looking for a birthday party site in the sacramento/davis area for a group of kids between the ages of 2 and 4yo. Any ideas? Or does anyone know the name of their local ''parent press'' newspaper or if they have anything similar to bpn? party planner

    My nieces and nephews in Davis and Sacramento loved parties in King Arthur's Castle at Fairytale Town in Sacramento. I've always enjoyed taking my kids there. It's old fashioned, do-it-yourself fun for toddlers and preschoolers. For more info go to their website . S.B.
    A lot of people have kids parties of all ages at William Land Park. You can contact the city and they can tell you the details. I believe that it is not very expensive. cutesaf
    I know Children's Fairyland in Oakland is great for that age group, so you can try the equivalent in Sacramento, Fairytale Town. I haven't been there in years, but I hear they are putting in a real yellow brick road. Check it out at Good luck! Kenna
    Depends where you want to be -- Davis or Sacramento.

    Some Davis favs...Central Park, the Rainbow Park, the Hobby Craft does birthday parties, UC Davis Games Area has bowling parties for young kids with bumpers.

    Sacramento: Sacramento Zoo, Fairytale Town right next to the zoo, train museum in old town.

    There is also a jump place in Vacaville that is fun and a place called Stars Recreation -- it has it all -- food, bowling, parties, etc.

    And you can't forget the Nut Tree in Vacaville! The little train and kid rides are great. My 3.5 year old loves 'em. And let's not forget that next month FENTON'S is opening a location right next door. You can't go wrong! Good luck! The Davis-raised and Sacramento-lovin' fool!

    I live in Davis and belong to the Mom's Circle Davis - a Yahoo group ( It is similar to BPN, you can post your question and wait for replies. Davis Diamonds gymnastics would be a fun place for a party (, there is also a Pump it Up in Woodland, and the new Nut Tree Park in Vacaville. If you are on a budget, Central Park in Davis is great. There is a wonderful farmer's market every Sat, an old bicycle-powered carousel for kids, and a fountain that shoots up out of the ground, in addition to a good playground. It's at 3rd and C Sts.

    I don't know as much about Sac, but you could check the parent's monthly ( for ideas. The Sac Zoo and Fairytale Town are right across the street from each other, and Fairytale Town would be fun for a preschooler's party ( There is also a small amusement park located across from the zoo, with pony rides and small roller coasters...I can't remember the name. Good luck, and remember it gets reeeeeeeally hot up here in the summer. already turned my A/C on

    Toddler/kid fun in Davis?

    Jan 2004

    Does anyone know of some fun parks, play areas, etc. in the Davis area? Or someplace off I-80 in that general area? I'm trying to figure out a good meeting point between here (Richmond) and Sacramento along I-80, so a friend and I can get together more often. Her daughter is 1 1/2, and my kids are 3 1/ 2 and 6 mos. It doesn't have to be too fancy--a good park would do--just somewhere where the kids could play and we could talk and maybe grab a nearby bite to eat. Thanks! Christine

    Davis has many, many beautiful parks but few are walking distance to restuarants. Luckily you can go to 3rd and B streets in downtown to Central Park. This park is close to several restaurants and cafes and is also the location for Picnic in the Park. This event runs every Wednesday in April thru October from 4-8 pm and includes Davis' wonderful farmers market, restaurant booths, pony rides, bouncy houses, live music and more. Its a fantastic family event and many bring their own food.

    Another option is that each of you could take the Capital Corridor train to Suisun or some such mid point. Suisun is trying to revitalize and has a quaint park area along the water (and near the train station and downtown). While I know there is grass and trees, I'm just not sure if there is playground equipment Good luck and feel free to email me for more suggestions. Kristin

    Hi, I went to UCD and one of my favorite places about Davis is that it is VERY kid-friendly. It is full of parks and great places to run around. When it's hot, going to the farmers' market downtown and letting your kids play in the fountain is really fun (the water shoots straight up from the ground like a giant sprinkler). I also recommend Rainbow City was designed and built by the community, much like Frogpark in Rockridge. You can find out much more information on City of Davis public parks and open space here:

    A brochure about City of Davis Play Areas can be found at: Dept.: Parks & Community Services Phone: (530) 757-5626 Wepage: Have Fun! Aggie

    Sacramento Train Museum / Train Trip

    Nov 2003

    Re: Winter birthday party for outdoorsy 5-year-old
    While my idea won't work with 10 kids you might consider for another year. Two of my sons have winter birthdays so I have been in your shoes. A couple of years ago for the 6th birthday of one of them, all of us (family only) took the train from Emeryville to Sacramento. Once then, we walked the block and a half to the train museum. It was a great trip for all us and the train was so fun and easy - take your own snacks though. He wants to do it again this year! If you consider it, check with Amtrak as they often have specials, kids free, etc. Have fun! Birthday mom

    November 1999

    We are taking a train trip to Sacramento over Thanksgiving weekend to visit the Train Museum. Can anyone recommend good kid-friendly places for lunch and dinner, as well as a nice park for buring off some energy? All would need to be within walking distance of the museum. Thanks

    We did this a few years ago, so my memory is somewhat foggy, but the museum borders on something -- I think it's the river -- and all along the river is a long strip of park to run in. Part of it is a boardwalk. Are you taking the train (Amtrak) there? If you are, it's a short walk from the station to the museum, also useful for burning off steam. Also, the museum is full of lots of trains to go through, which can wear one out. (Particularly adults, I suppose.) You can walk around old town. You can take a horse-drawn buggy around old town. There are little sandwich/ice cream shops in old-town, too. Don't know where you'd eat dinner. If you're feeling very energetic, you can walk to the capital which has a very lovely park all around it. Seems to me we did all those things. We took the train there, ran around all day and took the train back. It was very fun -- the train ride itself is a lot of fun and very scenic. It feels like a big adventure.
    The Train Museum is in Sacramento Old Town which has lots of fun stores and restaurants. Also, there's a pedestrian walkway under Hiway 5 to the Downtown Mall, which is pretty for a mall, and has shops and restaurants. Just walk around and you'll find what you need. A nearby park is Discovery Park, which sits on the junction of the Sacramento and American Rivers. Walk over to the Sacramento River from the Museum (there are paddle wheel riverboats there), as you face the river turn right, and there's a walk/bike path to the Park, not a long walk which includes a bridge across the American River to the park. Or, go to the park in front of the Museum, which is a few blocks south of Old Town, across the Capitol Mall. Have fun!
    Regarding the Sacramento Trip... the train ride to and from Sacramento is usually over too is really fun.The train museum is a great destination and Old Town Sacramento has many restaurants which can suffice for lunch. There is plenty of running room outside along the river promenade in Old Town. It has more train cars and some boats to look at. The Sacramento Discovery Museum is right next door and worth a visit. Also worth visiting (perhaps on another trip) are Sutter's Fort and the capitol building (open weekdays only). Sutter's Fort can be reached by taking a local bus and the capital can be reached by bus or by walking, especially if your kids are a little older. Sutter's Fort is really interesting for the kids
    We went to the Rail Fair at the train museum with two 3 year olds and a 6 year old this summer. We found that it was enjoyable to spend some time at one of the patio areas overlooking the river just watching boats. There are several very casual restaurants/ice cream parlors right there. We stopped at one which had hot dogs and ice cream.
    The Train Museum is great for kids! My two year loved it and she burned plenty of energy in the museum itself. Within walking distance is Old Sac. No parks exactly but lots of walking and running ops. We usually eat dinner at Fat City. There are lots of fast lunch places on every block. The best park in Sacramento is McKinley Park on G St near 34th. It's huge and has a wonderful play structure and a large pond, too
    The area called Old Sacramento is very close to the Train Museum and has family-friendly places to eat and attractions. Plenty of room for kids to run around in, as well as more trains to look at. It's also right on the river and a good place to take in the view and tell your kids about the history of Sacramento as a deep water port and shipping area (Sacto Valley River drainage-->Delta (agriculture, levies)-->SF Bay-->Pacific Ocean
    Also try the Crocker Art Gallery, located south of Old Town at 211 O St. Wonderful Victorian mansion with good permanent and rotating exhibits. is Crocker webpage, is the Sacto webpage, is the parks map. And Capitol Park is a wonderful place to run around, see century old trees, etc.
    July 1996

    More on train rides: Recently we took our 2 year old son to Sacramento via the Amtrak train. He rode free, we paid $17.50 each, RT. We boarded at the Berkeley stop at the end of University. My son loves trains and was delighted to be on the trains that we hear go by all the time. He ran non-stop up and down the bi-level cars. While we didn't get to rest, it was a comfortable trip. You can get train schedules (but not fares) on the web or

    With some friends who met us at the train station, we first strolled around old town Sacramento. It's similar to a beachside boardwalk - the shops contain much useless, but fun (for some) stuff. There is an old steam train which goes down the river about 3 miles. That ride takes about 40 minutes. Costs $5 for adults, little kids are free. The big draw was the train musuem, which is very close to the Amtrak station. I think it costs about $6 for adults; again, the little kids are free. There are lots of exhibits for all different ages. The kids had a great time running around.

    If you like shopping, there is a relatively new mall with all the stores one could want nearby. There's a walkway under the freeway with murals and piped in music. There are also huge parking garages there.

    It was definitely an exciting trip for my son. I thought he would nap on the way home, but he too charged and continued to run around the cars. Now he constantly talks about going to Sacramento.