Living in Sacramento

Sacramento is the capital of California and has a population of roughly 486,000. The greater Sacramento area is the 4th largest in the state with a population of about 2.5 million. As the state’s capital, government is one of the largest employers, but Sacramento has a wide variety of other employers, including financial and professional services, trade, construction, transportation, utilities, and manufacturing.

The city is located at the confluence of two major rivers—the north/south running Sacramento River and the east/west running American River. These rivers, as well as Sacramento’s proximity to the Sierra Nevada mountain range—roughly one hour east of Sacramento by car—provide numerous opportunities for sport and outdoor activities. These include running and cycling on the extensive bikeways on the American River; canoeing, fishing, boating, and kayaking on the rivers; skiing and other winter sports in the Sierras; and hiking, backpacking, and camping in the nearby wilderness.

Featured in the New York Times travel series—see 36 Hours in Sacramento—Sacramento has a lot to offer. The city itself has a very active social scene, including a superb array of restaurants of all varieties. In addition, the proximity to the Oakland/San Francisco Bay Area—roughly 75 miles to the west—provides easy access to the cultural and culinary opportunities available there.

Sacramento has a pleasant, temperate climate most months, with the exception of the mid-summer months which can be hot (in the 90s and 100s). But, as residents say, “it’s a dry heat,” meaning humidity is rarely a factor. Sacramento is well-known for its trees, parks, and older neighborhoods. A national magazine recently described Sacramento as America’s most diverse city.