Things To Do In The Central Valley

Fun things to do in the California Central Valley include a train ride through the fertile valley from Woodland to Sacramento, a dinner cruise from Old Town Sacramento, sampling some local wines along the Madera Wine Trail and more fun activities. Whether it be a day on the golf course or boating on a lake, the California Central Valley has plenty of fun things to do.


The Sacramento River Train is located off Interstate 5 in Woodland. This two and one-half hour train ride takes you from Woodland to the Sacramento River where it then follows the river to West Sacramento, Cross over an 8,000 foot long wooden trestle, while traveling through the state's most productive farming region. Murder mystery, train robbery and many more themed tours are available. When in season, sample fresh fruit and products from the area at Uncle Ray's Fruit Stand.

Sacramento River Train
341 Industrial Way
Woodland, California 95776
(530) 666-6756

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Gibson Ranch Park is located northeast of Sacramento off Interstate 80. This private park is situated on the edge of urban sprawl and features a lake, running creek, nature trails, equestrian center, animal farm and more. Activities at Gibson Ranch Park include camping, fishing, walking, jogging, biking and pony rides. More than 5 miles of dirt trails interconnect through the park. Get an up-close view of farm animals like ducks, geese, pigs, cows, chickens, llamas and horses. Events that take place at the park include Civil War re-enactments, concerts, festivals, weddings and more.

Gibson Ranch Park
Gibson Ranch Park Road
Elverta, CA 95626
(916) 806-3868

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The Sacramento Southern Excursion Train is located off Interstate 5 in Old Sacramento State Historic Park. Situated at Front and K Streets, train excursions include a 6-mile, 40-minute vintage train ride along the levees of the Sacramento River. The train operates on the weekends and departs every hour from 11am to 5pm. The Sacramento Southern Excursion Train is run by the California State Railroad Museum which is also located in Old Sac.

Old Sacramento State Park
Front and K Streets
Sacramento, California 95814
(916) 445-6645

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photo courtesy of Hornblower Cruises & Events

Hornblower Cruises is located off Interstate 5 in Old Sacramento State Historic Park. They offer dinner and lunch cruises aboard luxury and historic vessels. Choose from a one hour narrated cruise to learn Sacramento's history or longer cruises aboard a luxury paddlewheel boat. Menu choices may include Spinach Basil Gnocchi, Pollo Borracho & Carnitas, Asiago Caesar Salad, Polynesian Chicken Noodle Salad and much more.

Hornblower Cruises & Events Old Sacramento
1206 Front Street
Sacramento, CA 95814
(530) 666-6756

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GoKart Racer is located in West Sacramento off Interstate 80. GoKart Racer features indoor kart racing in custom Honda-powered karts. Reach speeds of up to 35 mph on your choice of two different race tracks. Tracks are sometimes combined to form the longest indoor kart track in the US. Sessions available from 10 to 20 minutes.

GoKart Racer
1430 Enterprise Blvd
West Sacramento, CA 95691
(916) 604-7223

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The Madera Wine Trail is a collection of several wineries that surround Highway 99 in the town of Madera. Wineries such as Birdstone, Ficklin, and Pacific Crest to name a few, all welcome your arrival to their tasting rooms.

Madera Wine Trail
Madera, California 93639

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All Regions

Horseback riding stables are located from Sacramento to Bakersfield. Whether looking for a short trek or a pack trip into the wilderness, there are many stables in the Central Valley that can accommodate your interest. MORE DETAILS

Camanche Reservoir

Lake activities include boating, fishing, water-skiing and more. Several lakes are located throughout the Central Valley from Folsom to Bakersfield. Many of these lakes offer camping with some even offering houseboat rentals. MORE DETAILS

Kayak rentals, kayak tours and kayak lessons are offered at lakes in the Central Valley. In addition to kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding (SUP) has become a popular activity. We also provide info for stand-up paddleboard rentals, paddleboard tours and paddleboard lessons. Peacefully explore the lakes of the Central Valley. MORE DETAILS

Golf courses are abundant in California's Central Valley. From Sacramento to Tehachapi, Central Valley courses can be challenging and fun. MORE DETAILS

Activities by Region

California by Region

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