Beat the Heat: Water Activities in Sacramento

Enjoy Sacramento’s many river and water activities.

Sacramento has a lot to offer and that includes fun activities along the two major rivers that flow through the city—the Sacramento and American.

Historically, these rivers have provided irrigation for agriculture, drinking water and waterways for ships to deliver goods. Nowadays, these rivers—still powerful waterways for agriculture and shipping—are also prime areas for recreation: lazy-day rafting, launching boats, swimming and enjoying the addition of numerous parks along the water.

Here are just some of the many options for you and your family to experience.

Raft along the American River

  • American River Raft Rentals offers self-guided raft trips on the lower American River.
  • Enjoy oak-studded parks with picnic tables, running water and restrooms.
  • Kayak or float leisurely on inner tubes.

Go back in time on a riverboat with the Delta King

  • This authentic paddle wheel riverboat has been revived to its former glory and moored along the Old Sacramento Waterfront.
  • Originally built in 1927, the Delta King has also been converted into a boutique hotel with one-of-a-kind facilities for riverfront dining, nightlife and events.
  • It also offers an authentic cultural experience of the Old Sacramento Waterfront.


Take a day trip to the Delta

  • Explore the vast waterways by Jet Ski or water ski within city limits.
  • Take a day trip to the small towns along the California Delta, where a crawdad festival in Isleton, pear festival in Courtland or wine tasting in Sugar Mill await.
  • Stop at marinas along the river near downtown for easy access and a place to keep your boat and grab lunch or dinner.


Visit Discovery Park—where the American and Sacramento rivers meet

  • Discovery Park is a 302-acre park and one of Sacramento County’s best boat launches on the shore of the American River.
  • Prefer to enjoy the river without getting in? Cyclists can bike the 32-mile paved Jedediah Smith Memorial Trail that runs the confluence of the Sacramento and American rivers. It’s the longest purpose-built, multi-use pathway in the country.
  • Not into swimming? Enjoy views of the river and play softball while archers of all experience levels practice in the archery range.
  • Anglers can appreciate excellent fishing; here they find the best of both rivers!


Stroll around Northlake’s LakeWalk

  • Speaking of things to do on the water, Northlake will offer residents unsurpassed community amenities.
  • ​​The private Resident’s Club offers a lap and lounge pool, turf area, cabanas, hospitality bar, lounge area, BBQs and areas for entertaining and relaxing within walking distance from residents’ front doors.
  • Numerous neighborhood parks, lakes and trails, including those at the LakeWalk path, encircle several lakes, giving you access to leisurely walks.


Northlake’s trails and parks will get you back to nature, with a community lake to bring it all together. And we’re just minutes away from much of Sacramento’s rivers and waterways.

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