10 Best Things to Do in Nevada City, California

If you’re looking for a serene getaway, Northern California’s Gold Country region offers an idyllic escape.

Whether you’re traveling solo or with your family, Nevada City is the perfect destination, boasting a variety of luxurious hotels and sophisticated museums. Taking a break from your routine is crucial to maintaining productivity, but organizing a vacation can be daunting, especially without a reliable travel guide.

To ensure a successful trip, we’ve compiled a list of the top activities to enjoy during your visit to Nevada City, California.

10 Best Things to Do in Nevada City, CA

Nevada City, lying in the heart of the Sierra Nevada, has a lot to offer. From stunning scenery to an artsy city view, you will never grow tired of the sight. This list ensures there is never a dull moment on your trip. Whether you visit alone, with your partner, or with family, you will find an activity to suit every taste.

1. Learn History and Meet New People at the Nevada County Historical Society Museum

A trip to Nevada City can be a great chance to expand your mental horizons. The city is home to various museums and art galleries, superbly portraying the region’s vibrant culture.

You can visit the nearby Nevada County Historical Society Museum to catch a glimpse of the region’s rich history. You will find several facts about Nevada City and its surrounding areas, like Nevada County and Grass Valley. This Nevada County gem exhibits historic mining tools dating back to the California gold rush. This 1850s gold rush holds much importance to the region, having allowed several cities to grow. San Francisco is one of the most prominent cities that the gold rush impacted.

If you want to uncover some hidden art gems, visit downtown Nevada City. The area holds some of the best art galleries in the state, with pieces from the city’s rising talent.

2. Buy Fresh Food at the Nevada City Farmer’s Market

Nevada City Farmer's Market
Photo by https://visitnevadacityca.com/blog/nevada-city-farmers-market-2.htm/

The Nevada City Farmers Market is the ultimate hub for fresh food. From handmade bakery goods to fresh produce, you can find it all here. Further, you can show your support to the local farmers by shopping for these high-quality products. 

The markets in the center also switch with the seasons. During the summer market, from May to December, you can find these activities in full bloom. Over 35 vendors showcase their offerings every weekend, with bread, jewelry, herbs, and more. On the other hand, the winter market is much more concise than the former, with shorter working hours. The market’s winter stock might include a small range of items, but they are all unique and of top quality.

3. Go Hiking and Swimming Near the South Yuba River

South Yuba River
Photo by https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/South_Yuba_River_State_Park

Less than thirty minutes from the city, the South Yuba River region has much to offer. You can sit back and enjoy nature while fishing or bird watching. You can also get in some exercise by mountain biking or hiking along the land’s scenic trails.

Don’t forget to stop by Emerald Pools while you are there. This swimming spot near the South Yuba River will stun you with its sparkling water. You can reach the main pool after a short hike along the river.

4. Go Wine Tasting at the Nevada City Winery

Nevada City is well known for its extensive wine tasting tradition. This charming town hosts many growing wineries, each offering a unique wine-tasting experience.

If you are in town, you must visit the Nevada City Winery. It is one of the most famous wineries in the city, producing premium wines since 1980. You can either sign up for tastings or go around for a winery tour. Also, the place offers a wide variety of wines, including the finest red and white blends. The makers create each wine using a specific method that gives a fruity flavor to the final product.

If you want to learn more about the wine scene in the city, you can visit other wineries. Exploring multiple centers will give wine experts a better option range.

5. Catch a Show at the Nevada Theater

Nevada Theater
Photo by https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:US-CA-NevadaCity-2012-07-18T170103_v1.jpg

Lying in the heart of the city, the Nevada Theater is one of its oldest landmarks. It is a historic site responsible for engaging its audience for over 100 years. The theater hosts a variety of shows, from live plays to musicals. If you signed up for any Nevada City tours, this place would likely be your first stop.

You can not leave the city without attending one of Nevada Theater’s live shows. Whether you are in the mood to laugh or shed some tears, the theater has an option for you. The theater also houses the Nevada City Box Office. Here, you can find tickets to various ongoing events and shows around town.

6. Take a Hike at the Deer Creek trail 

Deer Creek Trail
Photo by https://www.nevadacitychamber.com/nevada-city-things-to-do/outdoor-recreation/hiking-trails/deer-creek-tribute-trail/

The Sierra Nevada region is famous for its abundance of hiking trails. Both beginners and seasoned hikers will enjoy these spots, and the nearby Deer Creek and Cascade Canal trails are a blast to check out as well.

While out on the trails, you can enjoy the company of new friends and the sights of migratory birds.

7. Attend a Special Event like the Nevada City Film Festival

Nevada City Film Festival
Photo by https://visitnevadacityca.com/blog/nevada-city-film-festival-2022.htm/

Nevada City is famous for hosting several events and festivities around the year. While in town, you can take advantage of it and visit these live shows and take part in special events. The Nevada City Film Festival is perhaps the most majestic annual event in the city. When in town, you can check the Nevada City Events Calendar website for more to learn about the goings-on.

8. Explore the Culinary Scene

After you uncover the artsy Nevada City by visiting various live shows, galleries, and film fests, save time for food. When traveling to a new place, getting a taste of its culinary scene is a must. There are various trendy restaurants in town, serving your every food craving. You can start at the Communal Cafe with a breakfast pastry or get some dessert at Nevada City Chocolate Shoppe.

9. Go Horseback Riding at the Red Moon Ranch

Red Moon Ranch is the best location to be if you want to learn how to ride horses or just enjoy spending time with these magnificent creatures. The location itself is beautiful and clean, and the staff is friendly and well-versed in the care of horses. Spend some time here riding along the trails; you won’t regret it.

10. Go Biking and Souvenir Shopping in Downtown Nevada City

Downtown Nevada City
Photo by https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nevada_City_Downtown_Historic_District

Downtown Nevada City is full of crowds of tourists. If you want to learn about the daily lives of people in the city and their culture, start here. The region has everything you need to know about the city. Start with a walk along Broad Street and admire the unique build of historic buildings there. You can also buy memorable souvenirs and gifts for your friends and family from the chic shops in the area. Lastly, you can visit the Inn Town Campground, which is just a mile away from there.

Hey, if you stick around the area make sure to check out these other towns:

Final Thoughts

Nevada City is one of the top cities in California, offering various lifestyle and cultural values to its tourists. A trip to this city includes interaction with various natural marvels and man-built wonders. You can either stay in the city and explore rustic architecture and good food or go biking in nearby National Parks. If you follow this guide, we can ensure you will make the most of your visit to Nevada City, CA.

Leave a Comment