The Top 12 Suburbs of Sacramento
In addition to its exceptional job opportunities, vibrant nightlife and myriad of things to do in the heart of the city, Sacramento is surrounded by an array of exceptional communities. Residents of these Sacramento suburbs enjoy easy access to downtown Sacramento for employment, entertainment, dining, shopping and more.
However, each suburb maintains its own independent sense of community, with its own set of amenities, historic charm, local events and other alluring features. Take a tour with us throughout the Greater Sacramento Region as we explore the area’s finest suburbs, offering a rare combination of city conveniences and small-town charm.
The Top 12 Suburbs of Sacramento Include:
- El Dorado Hills
- Granite Bay
- Elk Grove
- Fair Oaks
- Land Park/Curtis Park
Nestled in the Sierra Foothills south of Folsom Lake, El Dorado Hills is an upscale city known for its rolling hills and expansive views. This unincorporated area is comprised of a collection of communities, from well-prices neighborhoods to exclusive housing enclaves such as Serrano, The Summit, Watermark, Marina Hills and Highland Hills. There are plenty of options for acreage, horse properties and large luxury estates in El Dorado Hills.
Families are drawn to the area for its wonderful schools, abundance of parks, youth activities and sports programs. Residents enjoy a range of outdoor recreation activities due to the central location of El Dorado Hills, which is just 25 miles from the center of Sacramento and 75 miles from South Lake Tahoe. They may go hiking and biking on nearby trails, or visit Folsom Lake and the American River for boating, kayaking, fishing and swimming.
El Dorado Hills offers a rich arts and cultural community, with a number of art galleries, dance academies and a performing arts institute in town. The popular El Dorado Hills Town Center is a central destination for dining, shopping and entertainment of all kinds. The public plaza hosts a number of community events, including farmers’ markets, holiday haunted houses, spring carnivals, and a number of art, beer and wine festivals.
Nestled along the shore of Folsom Lake just east of Roseville, Granite Bay is an upscale and prestigious community known for its ideal location, well-planned layout, top-notch schools, abundance of churches and excellent recreation options. Granite Bay hosts some of the Sacramento area’s most opulent luxury properties, including a number of custom-built Spanish-style and Tudor estates situated on large lots. The area consists of a mixture of gated, semi-gated and open neighborhoods, including Los Lagos, Shelborne and Wexford.
Natural beauty abounds in Granite Bay, which was named after the beautiful granite outcroppings found in the area. Residents take advantage of their surroundings with endless outdoor recreation and simply admiring the scenic views and natural features, including rolling hills, mature oak trees, streams and lakes. The city is home to a number of parks, including Granite Bay Community Park, Miners Ravine Nature Reserve, Treelake Park, Douglas Ranch Park, Sterling Point Park and Ronald L. Feist Park.
Several shopping centers dot the landscape of Granite Bay, offering a number of restaurants, coffee shops, bars, fitness studios and seasonal farmers’ markets. For additional attractions and conveniences, residents are not far from Sacramento and Roseville, which are about 25 and 9 miles away, respectively.
Located just 16 miles east of Sacramento, Roseville is one of the most vibrant and thriving cities in the region. Resting at the intersection of I-80 and Highway 65, Roseville provides convenient access to rural communities in the county, yet it contains a myriad of business, retail and recreational opportunities in its parameters. The city is divided into three distinctive sections, including East Roseville/Granite Bay, Central Roseville and West Roseville.
The city operates a total of 72 beautiful parks with sports facilities, play structures, trails and picnic areas. Roseville is a bike-friendly community, offering more than 90 miles of bike lanes and 32 miles of off-street paths. The Roseville Aquatics Complex and the Roseville Sports Center offer additional resources for fitness and recreation.
Roseville is home to the Galleria and the Fountains at Roseville shopping centers, which offer a plethora of shops, restaurants and entertainment venues, and host a number of seasonal events. Downtown Roseville is a historic area embracing the community’s heritage and offering a neighborly vibe with art walks, street fairs, Wine Down Wednesdays, concerts in the square, and outdoor film showings. In the downtown district, you’ll find a number of local restaurants, cafes, shops and venues for cultural and performing arts.
The college town of Davis is known for its rich agricultural history, its vibrant livability, sense of innovation and undeniable sophistication. This progressive and hip city is home to University of California Davis, one of the finest universities in the state. UC Davis plays a major role in the culture and local happenings of the city, offering an expansive arboretum, the Mondavi Center, sporting events, a farmers’ market and much more.
Boasting an impressive Bike Score of 89 (plus a handful of areas in Davis with perfect scores of 100!), Davis is an extremely bike-friendly city. The city offers more than 100 miles of bike paths and lanes, and even operates Bike Davis, an organization dedicated to preserving the bike culture of Davis. The city is also well known for its commitment to environmental awareness, demonstrated by solar-powered traffic lights, an abundance of electric vehicles and the heavy use of bikes.
There are 34 community and neighborhood parks in Davis, including Central Park, which is home to an award-winning year-round farmers’ market and a Wednesday night concert series in the spring. The downtown area offers an array of restaurants, boutiques, galleries, bars and bike shops. Residents may easily travel out of town for other attractions as Davis is located about 30 minutes from downtown Sacramento, about 90 minutes from San Francisco, and two hours from Lake Tahoe.
Located northeast of Sacramento, Folsom is defined by its historic charm, lively community, outdoor recreation, top-notch schools and abundance of attractions. The historic district, known as the Heart of Folsom, was established in the 1850s, when gold prospectors, settlers and the Pony Express rode through the center of town. Today, the district hosts over 80 boutique shops, restaurants, cafes and many historic buildings.
The diverse selection of neighborhoods in Folsom offer everything from established homes on tree-lined streets to new construction homes featuring the latest technology.
Folsom boasts over 34 miles of paved walking, biking and equestrian trails, and Folsom Lake and Lake Natoma are popular destinations for sailing, boating and swimming, while the American River offers rafting, kayaking and fishing. The Folsom Aquatic Center, the Folsom Sports Complex, and community parks provide additional opportunities for recreation of all kinds.
Families in Folsom frequent the Folsom Zoo Sanctuary, the working steam train, and the Folsom Public Library. The Harris Center for the Arts at Folsom Lake College provides art, theatre, concerts and dance performances for students and Folsom residents alike. Folsom is home to the headquarters of Intel, the largest employer in the Sacramento area. The city provides a number of job opportunities, and the city’s light rail station starts in Folsom, providing convenient access to downtown Sacramento.
Located just south of Sacramento, Elk Grove is a place where business, family and quality of life meet. The city was founded in 1850, and once served as a stage stop for those traveling to and from Sacramento from the Bay Area. Elk Grove is presently one of the fastest-growing cities in the region and is the second-largest city in Sacramento County. Old Town Elk Grove serves as the heart of the community. Streets are lined with historic buildings and homes dating back to the 1800s, in addition to quaint shops, cafes, restaurants, and other local businesses. Old Town hosts a number of seasonal events, including open-air skating, a Dickens Street Faire, a chili festival, Food Truck Mania and more.
Neighborhoods in Elk Grove offer homes for every lifestyle and taste, from small ranches with plenty of acreage to elegant homes on a golf course. There are a number of planned communities in Elk Grove featuring modestly sized homes on lush, tree-lined streets.
Elk Grove boasts a strong sense of community and hometown pride, as residents come together for regular events, youth sports and other activities. The city maintains 92 parks, including a rain park, dog parks, bike and skating facilities, and sports complexes. The nearby Stones Lake National Wildlife Refuge offers peaceful guided paddle trips and nature hikes.
Residents enjoy convenient access to a number of nearby wineries in the region, in addition to the Old Sugar Mill, which is just 20 miles west along the Sacramento River. The Old Sugar Mill features 15 wineries in one location, in addition to small craft vendors and year-round art walks.
Fair Oaks is a charming community known for its rolling hills and quiet communities with tucked-away homes. The heart of activity centers on Old Fair Oaks, a historic town center founded in 1895 with beautiful storefronts, antique shops, an amphitheater, and local eateries and cafes. The community of Fair Oaks is tight-knit and residents come together with events such as Taste of Fair Oaks, Fiesta Days and concerts in the park on Thursday nights in the summer.
Many of the homes in Fair Oaks are quaint and charming, most of which are constructed in the Craftsman style, and some of which are over 100 years old. But the options for housing in Fair Oaks range from original farmhouses with exquisite detail to newly constructed homes with a modern feel.
The beautiful tree-lined streets of Fair Oaks enhance the city’s natural beauty. Residents enjoy access to nine parks maintained by the district, in addition to equestrian ranches, biking and hiking trails, sports courts, and more. The nearby American River offers opportunities for fishing, kayaking, swimming and more. Fair Oaks offers a unique combination of urban lifestyle in a peaceful rural setting, as it is located just 17 miles from the heart of downtown Sacramento.
Rocklin is among several family-friendly communities comprising the southern portion of Placer County. In its early days in the 1890s, Rocklin held about 30 rock quarries, many of which were cut for street curbing in larger cities, including Sacramento and San Francisco. Today, Rocklin is a thriving suburb of about 60,000 residents and is considered one of the fastest growing cities in California.
Rocklin has an excellent school system and is home to two colleges, William Jessup University and the main campus of Sierra College, which boasts nature trails, a Japanese-style memorial garden, vernal pools and an arboretum.
Residents enjoy the city’s ideal location, offering access to the area’s many recreational opportunities and the amenities of this thriving suburban community. Rocklin is well-known for its expansive planned communities, including Stanford Ranch and Whitney Ranch, in addition to pockets of smaller neighborhoods with their own distinctive character.
Rocklin residents enjoy unparalleled views of the Sierra Nevada and Sutter Buttes, plus endless opportunities for outdoor recreation. The new 17-acre Quarry Park built around Quinn Quarry offers a myriad of activities, including zip lining, obstacle courses, lake activities, and more. The city maintains 30 parks and 200 acres of open space, and Rocklin is only 20 minutes from Folsom Lake, an ideal destination for boating, swimming, fishing and more.
Land Park and Curtis Park, located just south of downtown, are two of Sacramento’s signature neighborhoods. They are included among the city’s oldest historic areas, and considered one of the most delightful areas to call home. In fact, 2015 survey ranked Curtis Park as one of the 10 hottest neighborhoods in the entire country.
One of its most notable attractions is William Land Park, a 166.5-acre park home to an adventure play area, an amphitheater, a basketball court, a golf course, a jogging path, lakes, picnic areas, a rock garden, several sports fields, a wading pool and more. Plus, William Land Park hosts the Sacramento Zoo, Funderland, Fairytale Town and the William Land Golf Course!
Both Land Park and Curtis Park host some of the city’s most prized homes, ranging in style from Mediterranean to Tudor, and bungalow to Craftsman. Streets are lined with towering trees and lush foliage, adding to the area’s beauty and charm.
Land Park stretches to Broadway to the north, a street filled with some of the neighborhood’s most popular shops, restaurants and entertainment venues, including the historic Tower Theatre. Residents living in Land Park and Curtis Park enjoy immediate access to the city while living in a storybook world all their own just south of downtown. See all that’s in store within these attractive neighborhoods by exploring the many things to do in Land Park and Curtis Park!
SEARCH FOR HOMES IN LAND PARK + CURTIS PARK >
Woodland is a quaint agricultural town situated 20 miles northwest of Sacramento. Established in 1871, the town serves as the county seat for Yolo County and is just 12 miles north of Davis, home to UC Davis. Residents of Woodland enjoy the reasonable housing prices, small-town charm, and convenient transportation options to and from downtown Sacramento.
Woodland is a fairly bike-friendly town, and many residents commute via bike to Davis, which has 100 biking trails. The city of Woodland maintains 24 parks, comprising more than 160 acres of open space and recreational areas.
Woodland hosts a combination of big-box conveniences and locally owned boutique stores. The historic Woodland Opera House produces musicals, plays, comedies and classes throughout the year. The town has worked diligently to preserve the unique elements of Woodland’s historic downtown. The main thoroughfare showcases a museum of housing styles, showcasing buildings built between 1860 and 1940. The community of Woodland comes together with a number of annual events, including the annual Stroll Through History, First Friday Art Walks, the Christmas Holiday Parade, and monthly food truck events.
Located down I-80 at the base of the Sierra Nevada Mountains, Auburn is a quaint city rich in recreation, arts and an abundance of Gold Rush history. As a designated California historical landmark, Auburn boasts a picturesque downtown with homes and buildings dating back to the mid-1800s. Old West charm abounds with a unique modern twist, featuring a wide selection of wine bars, restaurants, breweries and boutiques. The arts community in Auburn is strong, as the city hosts a plethora of art galleries, the Auburn Symphony, and the Auburn Placer Performing Arts Center.
Residents enjoy endless outdoor recreation in and around Auburn. Nearby lakes, rivers and parks, such as the North Fork American River, the Auburn State Recreation Area and Hidden Falls Regional Park, offer endless fun for outdoor enthusiasts. Plus, Auburn is just 90 minutes from Lake Tahoe, an idyllic destination for snow sports in the winter and water sports in the summer.
The sense of community in Auburn is strong, evident in the myriad of community events, such as guided town walks, antique shows, classic car shows, art walks, holiday fairs, parades, concerts in the park and more. The year-round Auburn Farmers’ Market provides a regular community gathering and an opportunity for residents to access the rich bounty of this agricultural region.
Natomas is a pleasant area just north of Sacramento divided into two distinct communities, South Natomas and North Natomas. South Natomas is located minutes from downtown and is a popular area for city commuters to call home. North Natomas offers luxury living along the Sacramento River and hosts a variety of destinations, including picturesque parks and the Sacramento International Airport.
With an abundance of green space, restaurants, shops and other desirable destinations, Natomas is an excellent place to call home — and a great place to spend the day.
The community enjoys convenient access to I-80, I-5 and Highway 99, making it a great residential area for commuting professionals. Natomas is the last area of Sacramento that has not been fully developed, and the area saw major growth in the late 1990s and 2000s. It’s an exciting time to live in Natomas, as it is still growing and changing on a regular basis.
Convenience is the name of the game for Natomas, as there is no shortage of shops, restaurants, and entertainment for all ages. Plus, a reasonable trip to downtown puts even more options within reach.
One of the more major parks in the region is North Natomas Regional Park, but the city maintains 43 parks in total. Park and community amenities include playgrounds, ball fields, dog parks, a water park, an amphitheater, a community center, a library, a rose garden and a light rail station.
Which Sacramento suburb is your favorite?
Share some hometown pride! Comment below with your favorite Sacramento suburb.