What is There to do in Sacramento with Children?

Diana Bocco

Sacramento, California's capital city, is also its cultural center. With over 20 museums and main attractions lining up the streets, Sacramento is a premier destination for families. If you are visiting the greater Sacramento area and looking for things to do in Sacramento with children, here is a quick introduction to some of the most exciting attractions for those young and old.

Sacramento has amusement parks, including Funderland Amusement Park.
Sacramento has amusement parks, including Funderland Amusement Park.

One of the premier attractions for those visiting Sacramento with children is Funderland Amusement Park. The park features free admission, and you only pay $1.50 USD Dollars (USD) for each ride you choose to take. Besides the typical rides you can find in every park, Funderland also offers a dragon coaster and a series of manual, hands-on games. A must-see for families visiting Sacramento with children, the old-fashioned park is perfect for kids under 12.

Sacramento is the capital of California.
Sacramento is the capital of California.

Families looking to be amazed when visiting Sacramento with children can stop by the Discovery Museum of Sacramento – Science & Space Center, and experience 14 acres of odd animals, discovery rooms and simulated space missions, plus a series of hands-on exhibits. Another great museum for families visiting Sacramento with children is the California State Railroad Museum, featuring historic trains, including a running one that takes visitors around the Sacramento River.

Old Sacramento is pretty much a must when visiting Sac whether you're young or old. Historical Old Sac offers a glimpse into the Old West with its cobblestone streets, sidewalks made of wood, an Old Western style buildings. Horse-drawn carriage rides and a run down the river in a riverboat are also options.

If you're visiting in the summer and Gilroy is on your route to or from Sacramento, you and your children might enjoy a one-of-a-kind park called Gilroy Gardens. Gilroy Gardens features unique rides that include a monorail running through a greenhouse, a 1920s car ride, and swan paddle boats. The whole park is designed in the shapes of vegetables, and geared towards families wishing to add education to their fun. Ride the Banana Split swinging boat, spin around in the Garlic Twirl teacup ride, or fly about in the Strawberry Sundae wheel ride. Exhibits around the park include five waterfalls, a rock maze, and a series of learning sheds, small cabins featuring educational films about the park.

The Sacramento's state fair is another must-see summer show for those visiting Sacramento with children. The fair, which lasts 16 days and takes place in late August and early September, features big name artists, kid's attractions, and unique exhibitions.

Sacramento is home to over 20 museums, many of which may be of interest to children.
Sacramento is home to over 20 museums, many of which may be of interest to children.

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Discussion Comments


For kids 10 and under, check out BusyKidz in Folsom. It's an indoor pretend-play miniature city with doctor's office, house, grocery store, restaurant with karaoke stage, library, costume boutique, school room, bank, post office, park and infant/toddler room.

It has a comfortable waiting area for parents, including free wifi, well stocked book shelf and complimentary coffee and tea. It's on Woodmere Road, door to Hawkin's Dance Studio.


If it is a really hot day in Sacramento you can take your children to Waterworld USA and let them splash around in the pools and check out the water slides.

The admission isn't too bad running around $20 for an adult if memory serves me correctly, but for those who hold a Six Flags season pass it can be used at this park as well.

There are lots of great things to do with Breaker Beach being a fantastic choice for the inner tube riding. For the smallest of children there is a great pirate ship for them.

Just remember that if you are going to Waterworld USA, even with a Six Flags season pass you will still have to pay for locker rentals, which can get a bit pricey.


If your children love animals I think taking them to the Sacramento Zoo is a great outing choice. They have a fairly good selection of animals to view with more than 400 being housed in the complex.

For those that are on a budget you can keep an eye on the zoo website for their occasional admission free days.

There are some complaints about the zoo being a bit on the small side, but if you're just looking for an afternoon of nice walking, animal viewing and perhaps a nice picnic it can be a great place for you and your family.


I live in the Midwest where we are known for our great State Fairs. We were visiting relatives in Sacramento when they were having their State Fair, so we decided to check it out.

They didn't have quite the variety of animal barns to walk through like we are used to, but I must say I was not disappointed. I hurried through the farm exhibits because I am used to them and figured I would spend my time looking at new things.

There was a big dinosaur exhibit that was well worth the time. If you are there on a busy day, be prepared to wait in line for this exhibit though.

There are many attractions that your kids will enjoy. If they like dinosaurs they would be fascinated with this exhibit. Then take them on a walk through the farm and they should have the chance to see some baby animals.


My grandparents lived in Sacramento when I was a kid, and my sister and I always looked forward to spending time with them in the summer. There were so many fun things to do! We always had to go to at least one amusement park, but we also began enjoying some of the museums as we got older. The Discovery Museum was always interesting and educational.

Sacramento has many entertaining and educational things to participate in with your kids. There is also a new Sacramento Children's Museum which will be opening soon. It looks like it will be another great place to explore with your family. Your kids can even submit artwork to be permanently displayed at the museum.


If you have preschool children, Funderland is a wonderful place to go. I think this is one of the best Sacramento kids activities there is. Many times when you go to amusement parks, you don't get your moneys worth for the younger children when you pay for admission to the park.

You don't have to worry about that at Funderland. Because admission is free and the cost of rides is so reasonable, you can take a family with young kids and not worry about breaking the budget. The best deal is to go during the week and buy a wristband for unlimited rides.

My son's favorite ride was the flume, and with the wristband he could ride as many times as he wanted.

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