In the northern section of California lies the beautiful Yolo County, officially the County of Yolo.
Established in 1850, the county’s name was “Yola.”
The county is in the Greater Sacramento metropolitan area and the Sacramento Valley.
With charming places and a hefty bounty of agricultural land, the county provides a perfect laid-back California getaway.
Many attractions exist, including historical sites, entertainment options, dining spots, and striking sceneries.
Here are the best things to do in Yolo County, California.
See a Play at the Woodland Opera House
As a California Registered Historic Landmark, the Woodland Opera House in downtown Woodland is an excellent place for those seeking exceptional entertainment.
It hosts musicals, plays, and comedies annually and offers musical theater, dance, and drama classes.
Built in 1885, the theater was burned down by fire in 1892 but was later rebuilt with some of its remaining foundations and bricks and reopened in 1896.
It became a famous entertainment venue for the region, with over 300 touring companies gracing its stage.
It closed again in 1913, but California made efforts to restore the historic theater in 1981.
Today, visitors can enjoy numerous stellar performances and exciting events at the Woodland Opera House.
Learn about Agriculture at the California Agriculture Museum
The California Agriculture Museum in Woodland houses America’s unique collection of hundreds of historic tractors and California agricultural artifacts.
You can take a docent-led tour to learn many things about the history of farm-to-fork dating back to the Gold Rush era and the agricultural industry in California.
You also have the option to go on a self-guided tour through the rows of exhibits.
Likewise, you’ll find a blacksmith shop, early barns and livestock, and buses from the 1920s.
At the California Agriculture Museum, you can take a behind-the-scenes look into how to make moonshine and how California agriculture fed the world in the 1800s.
There’s also an event center perfect for various events and a kid’s corner with many activities like a carousel, pedal tractors, and a cornhole.
Spend a Fun Day with Kids at Explorit Science Center
If you travel with kids in Yolo County, take them to the Explorit Science Center.
This interactive science museum stimulates curiosity and excitement about science and nature through exploration and discovery.
Hands-on activities and exhibits are geared toward children of all ages, field trips, and summer camps.
Exhibits include Explorit Rocks, about rocks, fossils, and crystals, and Animal Alcove with snakes, skinks, spiders, and other resident animals.
You can touch them with the trained staff’s assistance.
Kids will enjoy learning about the human body, animals, geography, stars, planets, and other topics through games, quizzes, puzzles, and other fun challenges.
Learn about science and spend quality time with your family at Explorit Science Center in Davis.
Grab Fresh Produce at the Davis Farmers Market
Get a headstart on your healthy, sustainable lifestyle at the award-winning Davis Farmers Market at Central Park in downtown Davis.
Thousands of people flock to this famous market weekly to shop for fresh and organic products from local farmers and producers.
It offers various fruits and vegetables, choice meats, chicken, fresh-baked goods, sweet treats, flowers, plants, eggs, cheese, honey, olive oil, wine, desserts, and many more.
Likewise, you’ll also find arts and crafts vendors selling scarves, purses, hats, tote bags, T-shirts, pottery, candles, soap, and other handmade items.
You can also catch the events hosted by the Davis Farmers Market, like Picnic in the Park, featuring a festival of food, music, and fun activities.
The market runs its signature event every Saturday and Wednesday.
Try Your Luck at Cache Creek Casino Resort
While in Yolo County, don’t miss the chance to visit Cache Creek Casino Resort, one of the best-kept secrets in Northern California.
What started as a bingo hall in 1985 has become one of Northern California's largest casino resort destinations.
Here, you’ll have a world-class experience with its top-notch amenities while soaking up the scenic views of the Capay Valley.
It has over 2,300 slot machines, 80 table games, an 18-hole championship golf course, and ten excellent restaurants.
Likewise, it has luxury hotel rooms, a full-service spa, outdoor pools, supreme entertainment, a gift shop, a 24-hour mini-mart, and more.
Cache Creek Casino Resort in Brooks in the Capay Valley won’t disappoint if you're looking for somewhere to unwind, gamble, and celebrate if you're looking for somewhere to relax, bet, and celebrate if you're looking for somewhere to unwind, gamble, and celebrate.
Test Your Golf Game at Yocha Dehe Golf Club
If you love golfing, you will enjoy the Yocha Dehe Golf Club, one of the top golf courses in California and America.
The course opened for public play in 2008.
Architect Brad Bell designed this 18-hole par-72 championship golf course with an outstanding layout.
You’ll enjoy a great round here and enjoy the serene setting with breathtaking views of the clubhouse, rolling hills, wine vineyards, and gorgeous scenery.
This award-winning golf course also has practice facilities, including a driving range, a large putting green, and a short game area.
Meanwhile, the clubhouse contains a well-stocked golf shop and the Bahtenta restaurant, where you can eat and drink after a game.
From immaculate playing conditions to great staff, Yocha Dehe Golf Club in Brooks ensures you’ll leave the place with fantastic satisfaction.
Drink a Glass of Wine at the Berryessa Gap Vineyards
Check out the Berryessa Gap Vineyards in Winters to try their high-quality wines that might become your next favorites.
The Berryessa Gap Vineyards produces award-winning wines from a grapevine rootstock nursery, a staple of the owner’s business since 1969.
Notable wines include the 2021 Albariño, which won double gold in the International Women’s Wine Competition, and the 2019 Durif, which won double gold in San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition.
You can also try other fine red and white wines, like Barbera, Petite Sarah, Sauvignon Blanc, Verdejo, and Zinfandel.
Enjoy exquisite tastings at their winery on Highway 128, with lovely views of vineyards set against the Vaca Mountains, or at their tasting room on Main Street in downtown Winters.
Take a Scenic Train Ride on the River Fox Train
The River Fox Train is a unique attraction that offers exciting and unforgettable train rides and railbike excursions.
The train adventure starts from West Sacramento and then travels through various scenic spots along a historic stretch of track before returning to the train station.
Popular excursions include wine tasting, beer tasting, boba tasting, and a gem-mining adventure train.
You can also try other adventures like the Two-Seater Railbike trip, where you’ll hop aboard a bike and pedal along the river and Yolo’s countryside.
There are also seasonal tours offered, like the Pumpkin Patch Express and the Magical Christmas Train, where you’ll have the chance to meet Santa.
Check out various ride experiences on the River Fox Train and enjoy nostalgic charm while admiring beautiful landscapes.
Hike the Trails at Valley Vista Regional Park
If you’re up for an exploration that rewards a panoramic vista, locate Valley Vista Regional Park across State Highway 16 from Camp Haswell Park.
Formerly Otis Ranch, Valley Vista Regional Park is 587 acres of natural area in Rumsey, California.
The terrain features steep slopes, and this remarkable place offers a scenic view of the Capay Valley, and beyond that, you can take as many photos as you want.
There are rural hiking trails you can explore and a picnic table at the top of the lower ridge where you can eat snacks while taking a break.
Before heading out to Valley Vista Regional Park, bring plenty of water, a hat, and other hiking essentials.
See the Wildlife at Winters Putah Creek Nature Park
If you’re looking for a great place to relax, try visiting the Winters Putah Creek Nature Park in Winters.
Students and community volunteers work together to plant hundreds of trees, flowers, shrubs, and grasses along the banks of Putah Creek.
The Winters Putah Creek Nature Park provides crucial habitat for various wildlife.
There are picnic tables, restroom facilities, viewing platforms, and nature trails along the creek that visitors can stroll with their dogs.
Check out this place to learn about nature and wildlife while enjoying the area’s amenities.
Savor a Delicious Meal at Rustic BBQ
Head to Rustic BBQ or Commons Farm Kitchen and Bar, situated along State Highway 16 in Guinda.
The family-owned country restaurant originally opened as Bennett's Rustic Bar-B-Q in 1926.
It serves mouthwatering open-pit oak wood Santa Maria-style barbecue, burgers, Portuguese specialties, seasonal farm-fresh meals, and beer and wine.
It takes pride in its great food made from locally grown and raised ingredients from its farm, Casa Rosa Farm, and other Capay Valley farms.
Try whole tri-tip, grass-fed burger sliders, or cheesesteak sandwich if you want local grass-fed beef.
Rustic BBQ hosts live music, trivia, and karaoke on the patio, perfect for sunny afternoons or warm summer nights.
You can enjoy your meal inside the historic bar in colder months.
Visit Capay Open Space Park
When you head north of Capay, you will find Capay Open Space Park off County Road 85.
Granite Construction donated this 41-acre park to Yolo County in 2004.
This park is ideal for picnics as it has three shaded structures, picnic tables, restrooms, a paved parking lot, and plenty of benches to sit and relax.
You’ll also find interpretive panels, over two miles of walking trails, and an access ramp to Cache Creek.
Capay Open Space Park has four major habitats: riparian woodland, riparian scrub, oak savanna grassland, and bottomland floodplain.
Appreciate Art at the John Natsoulas Center for the Arts
For art lovers, visit the John Natsoulas Gallery in downtown Davis, now the John Natsoulas Center for the Arts.
This art gallery is committed to promoting art history, arts education, and exhibitions by historical and high-profile artists.
The John Natsoulas Center for the Arts is the largest of the city’s art galleries and a vital part of the local art scene,
It operates the Log Cabin Gallery in the former Boy Scout Cabin and is responsible for the Transmedia Art Walk’s creation and tours.
Besides a fine art gallery, café, and event center, it is also a perfect venue for conferences, cultural meetings, weddings, fundraisers, and parties.
Visit its over three floors of art, including a rooftop sculpture garden, as every floor features different artists and artworks from paintings to ceramics.
Splash around at Bridgeway Lakes Community Park
Bridgeway Lakes Community Park on Southport Parkway in West Sacramento is a great summer destination for families.
This lovely 12-acre park features many recreational amenities for the enjoyment of the community, especially kids.
It includes a turf area, a baseball diamond, a patio area, a snack bar, BBQs, restrooms, a theater, and a community building.
There are also decent playgrounds and a water play area or spray ground to cool off and splash around at Bridgeway Lakes Community Park.
Stroll along its walking paths, get some fresh air, sit on one of the park benches, and admire the beautiful lake before you.
Discover County History at the Yolo County Historical Museum
The Yolo County Historical Museum is dedicated to preserving and protecting the historical and cultural heritage of Yolo County.
The exhibits illustrate the community’s stories, pioneers, buildings, and notable events throughout the years that shaped the county it is today.
This museum is housed in the historic Gibson House, and fascinating items on display include photos, documents, and artifacts.
Visitors can take a docent-led tour of the historic Yolo County Historical Museum on Gibson Road in Woodland.
While exploring the museum, you’ll find the Barn Gallery, the Blacksmith Shop and Dairy, and the Historic Oak Tree and Orchard.
Yolo County offers lovely and memorable experiences through its historical sites, natural areas, and entertainment opportunities.
You’ll always find beauty and enjoyment in this charming county, whether you prefer indoor attractions or outdoor activities.
Discover the best things to do in Yolo County, California!