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Top 6 Family Hikes around Sacramento

Published Mar 26, 2020

There are plenty of great nature walks and hiking trails around Sacramento for your family to explore.  Here are our top 6 picks for families with young kids.

Hiking with your kids is an great way to get them out of the house and into nature.

Here are our top choices of "nature" hikes around Sacramento (excluding more urban walks), in no specific order.  The focus was on some shorter, and easier ones that would be best for families with younger children:



Jedediah Smith Memorial Trail

Quite a long picturesque trail along the American River with several entry points, so you can do a distance that best suits your family, and choose between paved or unpaved routes.  A good choice with fun places to stop.




Cosumnes Nature Preserve

Take a walk through the trails and enjoy the wildlife.  There are a couple shorter loop trails to choose from--the Cosumnes River walk, and the Wetlands Walk, both of which begin a the visitor center.




Stone Lakes National Wildlife Refuge

The Blue Heron Trail loops will take you around the lakes an marshes to see the local birds.  It's short and well paved, so it's ideal if you need to push a stroller. 




Effie Yeaw Nature Center

After learning about the area at the nature center, hike through the loop trail, and see the plants and wildlife residents in action.  Guided tours are available.




Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area

The Seasonal Wetland Loop is a good flat trail that isn't too long (about 3 miles).  Bring binoculars to witness one of the best bird watching sites in the area.




South Fork American River Trail

A bit of a drive, but well worth it.  There are many trails for hikers of all levels, as well as other outdoor activities, like mountain biking, horseback riding, and rafting, and fishing, if you want to change things up.






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