Sutter’s Fort State Historic Park is a 19th-century fort that recounts the lives of early California pioneers. The reconstructed fort looks much as it did in 1839 when John Sutter received a land grant from the Mexican government to create his first non-indigenous settlement here in Sacramento.

He employed members of the Nisenan and Miwok tribes to help him with his business venture. Sutter’s settlement eventually became the city of Sacramento. A great post ahead.


Sutter’s Fort State Historic Park is the oldest restored fort in California. It was founded by Swiss pioneer John Sutter who was given land in the area by the Mexican government in 1839. The open-air museum aims to capture the spirit of 19th-century California. It displays a blacksmith forge, cooperage, bakery, and jail, as well as regular living history events.

A self-guided audio tour is available, or you can wander around the original rooms in the fort. Hear about Sutter’s attempts to get reimbursement from Congress for his aid to emigrants and his help in founding the state of California.

Kids will love the Sutter’s Fort or Bust program, an overnight adventure for elementary-aged children where they can immerse themselves in life at the fort in costume and learn skills such as wood carpentry, old-fashioned baking, and candle making. The fort also houses the California State Indian Museum. The site is surrounded by ponds, fountains, and heritage trees.


The fort re-enacts the life of John Sutter, a Swiss immigrant who established the first non-indigenous settlement in California. The adobe-stucco structure is located at the confluence of the American and Sacramento Rivers. The fort occupies a city block and contains exhibits and living history interpretive services.

Explore Sutter’s two-story adobe fort and learn about his many accomplishments. He helped send aid to the Donner Party and cultivated a prosperous farming community that became known as New Helvetia. However, less than a decade after it was established, his property was overrun by gold seekers.

Tour the fort on your own or take the self-guided audio tour. There are also educational programs for children. The park’s gift shop offers books and CDs about the fort and its surroundings. It also has a great selection of historical toys and games for kids. In addition, the park hosts monthly hands-on history activities. Guests can also participate in fort re-enactments. Check it out here.


The mission of Sutter’s Fort is to create a laboratory for learning that empowers all people to discover an inclusive, complex, and accurate history of California. Within the fort walls are dozens of rooms that serve as living histories, including the carpenter’s shop, vaquero room, blacksmith, mill and distillery, and Sutter’s office.

A self-guided audio tour allows visitors to explore the two-story Adobe Fort at their own pace. Watch for old-fashioned processes like making candles and melting metal. Learn how many immigrants moved to New Helvetia when word spread of Sutter’s hospitality, and then witness their dispersal after the gold rush.

The fort is open daily from 10 am to 5 pm. Admission is $5 for adults and $3 for kids. The museum store is operated by the Friends of Sutter’s Fort, a non-profit group in cooperation with California State Parks. All proceeds from the store go back to restoring the site and creating educational programs for children.


The Sutter’s Fort State Historic Park is a great place to visit for history buffs or anyone interested in learning more about the 19th-century history of Sacramento. The fort was originally built by John Sutter and is now a museum of his life and times. The fort is open from 10 am to 5 pm; seven days a week. There are many different rooms inside the fort, all with some sort of connection to Sutter’s story.

If you’re planning on visiting the fort, there are several parking options available. There is a parking garage across the street from the museum, and there’s also additional parking available on 11th Street. Additionally, there are some metered spots in the area that have a flat rate of $2 per hour. You can check out the SacPark reference guide to learn more about the meter rates and operating hours for each location. You can also save money on parking by booking your spot in advance online through Spacer. Next article.


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