Visitor Guide Magazine
Find things to do in Placer County


There are not many cities in this great, big world, where you can wake up to spend the morning skiing, the afternoon river rafting and the evening at the symphony. Where can you pan for gold, run a 100-mile race and enjoy the Black and White Ball, a glamorous dancing and dining extravaganza right in the middle of the street?

Youll find the answer nestled above the wild and scenic American River canyon, where charming Auburn, the jewel of Placer County, sits regally perched one eye on the grand valley below and the other winking to the majestic Sierra Nevada above.

With its stately courthouse and historic old town reminiscent of days gone by, Auburn ushers in the traveler in search of adventure, whether railroad buff or mountain climber. As the gateway to the countys many, varied activities, Auburn is also home to the Gold Country Fairgrounds, where events from motorcycle racing to quilting and even a rodeo take place each year, not to mention a traditional, good old-fashioned county fair, complete with 4-H competition. And for those whose passion is their very own home, the semi-annual Auburn Home Show features the latest trends in construction, renovation, landscaping and home dcor.

While ski resorts beckon the snowbirds, Tahoe, Spaulding, Rollins, Folsom and Clementine lakes invite campers, boaters and fishermen for a day, or a week, to pursue the elusive 20 pound trout or the perfect 360 degree wakeboard flip, or just to relax. The rapid American River boasts three forks for the white water enthusiast all with varying degrees of intensity, and the Bear River proposes an easier float for the novice.

For those who seek rapture at the end of the rainbow, Auburn is the perfect launching pad for gold mining or panning for nuggets, or simply reliving history with a hike along the Miners Ravine Nature Trail in nearby Folsom.

The Placer County restaurant scene provides fare for foodies of many stripes, with cuisine ranging from ethnic to California. And for those who like to cook, the parade of farmers markets attracts an eclectic bunch of vendors selling everything from fish to organic fruits and spices too! If youre one to enjoy a little nip now and then, Placer County claims a spirited cast of local breweries, cideries and wineries, all within driving distance from Auburn, the little hub that could.

Sports spectators can have their fill, watching the many talented high school athletes perform, or if they prefer collegiate competitions, two nearby colleges host a full palette of sporting events. And that goes for the theater, too. Between local schools and the community theater scene, Placer County fine arts programs offer a variety of entertainment venues. Visual arts are alive and well, with a full schedule of art walks to artisans workshops and studios.

If golf is what you had in mind, youve come to the right spot. There are plenty of golf courses (more than 20) to test your game but be sure to bring plenty of balls. The Ridge Golf Course right in Auburn is known to devour golf balls at a voracious pace. Other courses are more forgiving, and some offer a nine-hole platform, for those in need of a quick golf fix.

Whether its rugged four-wheeling, smooth sailing, or power shopping, Placer County has it all. And, as the county seat, Auburn is the gateway to the many wonderful adventures that await the traveler.