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Sacramento Downtown Introduction Walk (Self Guided), Sacramento

Immortalized by Jack London's famous “There's plenty of gold so I've been told, on the banks of the Sacramento!”, the capital of California is otherwise a quiet historic city sitting at the confluence of the Sacramento and American Rivers. The Old Sacramento district preserves much of the Gold Rush era heritage, including the construction of the Transcontinental Railroad, one of America’s earliest grand technological achievements, commemorated by the California State Railroad Museum. To learn more about the history and present day of Sacramento, follow this orientation walk.
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Sacramento Downtown Introduction Walk Map

Guide Name: Sacramento Downtown Introduction Walk
Guide Location: USA » Sacramento (See other walking tours in Sacramento)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 15
Tour Duration: 3 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 5.2 Km or 3.2 Miles
Author: Dee
Sight(s) Featured in This Guide:
  • International World Peace Rose Gardens
  • Sacramento Memorial Auditorium
  • Governor's Mansion State Historic Park
  • The Sacramento Masonic Temple
  • Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament
  • Crest Theatre
  • California State Capitol Museum
  • Leland Stanford Mansion State Historic Park
  • Crocker Art Museum
  • Theodore Judah Monument
  • Central Pacific Passenger Depot
  • Big Four House
  • California State Railroad Museum
  • The Pony Express Statue
  • Downtown Commons
International World Peace Rose Gardens

1) International World Peace Rose Gardens

International World Peace Rose Gardens (IWPRG) is a catalyst for peace in diverse communities around the world. The nonprofit organization was incorporated in 1988 for the purpose of creating beautiful rose gardens for peace on public, accessible sites. The gardens become magnetic centers where people gather, enjoy beauty and are inspired to be better persons and world citizens. The projects, including IWPRG youth programs, have impacted millions around the world.
Sacramento Memorial Auditorium

2) Sacramento Memorial Auditorium

One of the most recognizable and beloved buildings in the region, the Sacramento Memorial Auditorium is listed on the National Historic Register. The Auditorium hosts a variety of events, including concerts, high school graduations, and hosted the 2007 inauguration of Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Governor's Mansion State Historic Park

3) Governor's Mansion State Historic Park (must see)

Governor's Mansion State Historic Park is the location of the historic Governor's Mansion of California, the former official home of the Governor of California. The mansion is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It is the only governor's mansion in the United States not currently being used by a sitting Governor. The thirty-room, Second Empire, Italianate Victorian mansion was built in 1877 for local hardware merchant Albert Gallatin. The State of California purchased the house in 1903 to serve as a governor's mansion. Many furnishings remain from former governors, including Pardee's 1902 Steinway piano, velvet chairs and sofas belonging to Governor Hiram Johnson, as well as Persian rugs bought by Mrs. Earl Warren. The structure has been renovated a number of times and just recently underwent exterior work to restore the mansion's fading paint as well as replace the aging windows with more efficient, modern ones.
Sight description based on wikipedia
The Sacramento Masonic Temple

4) The Sacramento Masonic Temple

The Sacramento Masonic Temple was established between 1913 and 1918. It was considered a national historic place in 2001 because it is an exceptional building which represents an original design of its time. The magnificent rooms, oak doors, stained glass windows and cast bronze rails highlight the medieval style of the construction.
Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament

5) Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament (must see)

Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament in Sacramento is a cathedral of the Roman Catholic Church in the United States. It is the mother church and seat of Jaime Soto, the ordinary bishop of the Diocese of Sacramento. The Cathedral is located downtown at the intersection of 11th and K Streets. Currently, the cathedral is considered both a religious and civic landmark. It is the mother church of the diocese, which stretches from the southern edge of Sacramento County north to the Oregon border and serves approximately 975,000 Catholics. The diocese encompasses 99 churches in a 42,000 square mile region. The Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament is one of the largest cathedrals west of the Mississippi River.

With construction beginning in 1887, Sacramento’s Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament is an example of the strength and history in Sacramento’s architecture. The Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament combines Sacramento’s history with its modern day life.In 1886, Patrick Manogue was appointed as Sacramento’s first bishop. Inspired by churches he’d seen in European plazas, Manogue modeled the cathedral after L'Eglise de la Sainte-Trinitein Paris. Once completed, there was no cathedral equal in size west of the Mississippi River. The building is a modified basilica form approximately 200 feet long and 100 feet wide, and it seats 1400 people. The central bell tower rises 215 feet.

The architectural style of the church is Italian Renaissance on the exterior and Victorian on the interior. The church has been updated for modern use, but designers tried to keep the church in the original style. Over the years, with repairs, changes in color schemes and changes to the liturgy, the Church lost its stylistic unity.

"(The above description is based on Wikipedia under Creative Common License)"
Sight description based on wikipedia
Crest Theatre

6) Crest Theatre (must see)

The Crest Theatre is an historic theatre located in downtown Sacramento. The Sacramento French Film Festival is an annual event held in July at the Crest Theatre. It celebrates the present as well as the rich history of French cinema, featuring new releases and rarely seen classics. It is the only festival dedicated to French cinema in Northern California and one of only two on the West coast. The theatre was the location of a 2004 presidential debate between former Green Party presidential nomination candidate Peter Camejo and current independent vice-presidential candidate Norman Solomon on January 29, 2004, regarding the direction the Green Party should take in 2004.
Sight description based on wikipedia
California State Capitol Museum

7) California State Capitol Museum (must see)

The California State Capitol is home to the government of California. The building houses the bicameral state legislature and the office of the governor. Located in Sacramento, the Neoclassical structure was completed between 1861 and 1874 at the west end of Capitol Park.

The building is based on the U.S. Capitol building in Washington D.C. The west facade ends in projecting bays, and a portico projects from the center of the building. At the base of the portico, seven granite archways brace and support the porch above. Eight fluted Corinthian columns line the portico. A cornice supports the pediment above depicting Minerva surrounded by Education, Justice, and Mining. The dome is 64 m high, matching that of the U.S. Capitol, and supports a lantern with a smaller dome capped with a gold-leafed orbed finial.
The California Senate chamber seats its forty members in a large chamber room decorated in red, which is a reference to the British House of Lords, also the upper house of a bicameral legislature. The chamber is entered through a second floor corridor
Opening hours: Weekdays 8 am - 5 pm; Weekends 9 am - 5 pm;
Sight description based on wikipedia
Leland Stanford Mansion State Historic Park

8) Leland Stanford Mansion State Historic Park (must see)

Leland Stanford Mansion State Historic Park is a state and federally protected area in Sacramento. It features the Leland Stanford House, a mansion once owned by Leland Stanford, Governor of California from 1862 to 1863, U.S. Senator from 1885 to 1893, railroad tycoon, member of the Big Four and founder of Stanford University. The house was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1987.The original owner and builder of the home was Sacramento merchant Shelton C. Fogus, a wealthy Sacramento building merchant.

The Renaissance Revival architecture of the original home is attributed to Seth Babson.Between 1871 to 1872, the Stanford family embarked on an ambitious remodeling of the residence. As Stanford had to attend his gubernatorial inauguration by rowboat in 1862, the home was raised twelve feet in response to frequent flooding from the Sacramento River.The home was also expanded from 4,000 square feet to 19,000, and redesigned to reflect the French Second Empire architecture popular of the period. In 1978, the government of California acquired the property for use as a state park. The Sisters of Social Services would remain on the grounds until 1987, when California State Parks designated the mansion and the immediate surrounding land as a state historic park.

Beginning in 1991, with the help of Sacramento businessman and former Stanford University professor Peter McCuen, the Stanford Mansion underwent a 14-year renovation at the cost $22 million dollars. The repairs and restoration were completed in 2005, when the mansion opened to the public. California State Parks offers guided tours through the fully refurbished home.

"(The above description is based on Wikipedia under Creative Common License)"
Sight description based on wikipedia
Crocker Art Museum

9) Crocker Art Museum (must see)

The Crocker Art Museum is one of the leading arts institutions in California, and the longest continuously operating art museum in the West. Located in Sacramento, the Crocker has been an art innovator since 1885. The Museum boasts one of the state’s premier collections of Californian art dating from the Gold Rush to the present day, a world-renowned collection of master drawings, European paintings, one of the largest and most comprehensive international ceramics collections in the U.S. and collections of Asian, African, and Oceanic art. In addition to its impressive collections, the Crocker offers a wide variety of public programs.
The expanded Museum includes a new education center with four studio art classrooms, an art education resource room for teachers and docents, an expanded library, and student and community exhibition galleries, as well as an auditorium and public gathering places.
Opening hours: Tuesday – Sunday: 10 am - 5 pm; Thursday: 10 am - 9 pm
Sight description based on wikipedia
Theodore Judah Monument

10) Theodore Judah Monument

The Theodore Judah Monument is dedicated to Theodore Judah, who was an American railroad engineer. Many people considered it impossible to build a route over the Sierra Nevada mountains. After much hard work, he constructed an optimal road over the mountains.
Central Pacific Passenger Depot

11) Central Pacific Passenger Depot

Central Pacific Passenger Depot is located in Sacramento and was re-established in 1876. As a tourist attraction, there are several interesting things to admire, one of them being a classic restaurant. There is a nice, 40-minute train ride along the Sacramento riverfront.
Big Four House

12) Big Four House

The Big Four House was established in 1852 in Sacramento. It got its name in honour of the four people who invested in and built the Southern Pacific Railroad. The Big Four built their offices later, in 1961, at which point the building was declared a National Historic Landmark.
California State Railroad Museum

13) California State Railroad Museum (must see)

The California State Railroad Museum is a museum in the state park system of California, interpreting the role of the "iron horse" in connecting California to the rest of the nation.The museum features 21 restored locomotives and railroad cars, some dating back to 1862. Other exhibits show how the influence of railroads changed American society, influencing travel, commerce and daily life, as well as the lives of railroaders and the diversity of people who work on railroads. Changing exhibits featuring photography, ephemera, and artifacts from the museum's collection. Adjacent to the main museum building is reconstruction of the 1870s-era Central Pacific Railroad passenger station and freight depot on Front Street, which houses historic and contemporary railroad equipment.
The museum has its origins in 1937, when a group of railroad enthusiasts in the San Francisco Bay Area formed the Pacific Coast Chapter of the Railway & Locomotive Historical Society. This organization worked for years to promote the idea of a railroad museum, donating 30 historic locomotives and cars to the California Department of Parks and Recreation to be the nucleus of a State-operated museum in Sacramento.
Opening hours: Monday - Sunday: 10 am - 5 pm
Sight description based on wikipedia
The Pony Express Statue

14) The Pony Express Statue

The Pony Express Monument symbolizes the admiration of the character of the Pony Express. Thomas Holland was the creator of the statue. The monument is near the Pony Express Terminal in Sacramento, which is the last western stop of the Pony Express.
Downtown Commons

15) Downtown Commons

Downtown Commons or Sacramento Downtown Plaza is an upcoming two-level outdoor mixed-use entertainment and shopping complex operated by JMA Ventures, LLC, located along the alignment of K Street in downtown Sacramento, California, near the State Capitol building.
Sight description based on wikipedia

Walking Tours in Sacramento, California

Create Your Own Walk in Sacramento

Create Your Own Walk in Sacramento

Creating your own self-guided walk in Sacramento is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Top Architectural Buildings in Sacramento

Top Architectural Buildings in Sacramento

Sacramento is a city where it is easy to find distinctive architectural buildings. This self-guided city tour will help you discover some of the most valued works of art in town and admire the individuality of their style. Take this tour and you will be captivated by Sacramento's most interesting architectural constructions.

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.6 Km or 1.6 Miles
Shopping Walking Tour in Sacramento

Shopping Walking Tour in Sacramento

Experience a unique kind of shopping by visiting the art hubs, stores and markets in Sacramento. You will discover original products that cannot be found elsewhere in California. You will surely find something for yourself, or as a gift for someone else, or you will just spend some great shopping time. This tour plan offers a view of the most interesting shopping spots that should not be missed on...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 5.0 Km or 3.1 Miles
Sacramento Churches Walking Tour

Sacramento Churches Walking Tour

This guide will assist you when visiting some of the churches and cathedrals located in Sacramento, California, U.S.A. You are invited to admire the architecture of these buildings which are specific to different religions such as Baptist, Jewish, Russian and Greek orthodox as well as Catholic. Check out the most attractive churches in Sacramento on this self-guided tour.

Tour Duration: 3 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 6.5 Km or 4 Miles
Museums Walking Tour in Sacramento

Museums Walking Tour in Sacramento

Sacramento is the city where you can visit numerous amazing museums. You can discover here different things that belong to the culture and history of the city. We encourage you to find out about some of the most well-known and impressive museums in the U.S.A.

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 4.3 Km or 2.7 Miles
Family Entertainment in Sacramento

Family Entertainment in Sacramento

Sacramento is a town where visitors can easily find different attractions and places to have fun. Whether you are with friends or family, this tour guide offers many unique amusement parks and theatres where you can spend time while on vacation. Sign up for the next tour if you want to see the most interesting and attractive places in Sacramento.

Tour Duration: 3 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 6.3 Km or 3.9 Miles