California State Parks
Historic Sites Visitor Guide
• Chaperones must stay with students at all
• No food, beverages or gum inside any of the
• Park staff reserves the right to cancel groups
arriving more than 10 minutes after the
scheduled arrival time.
• Groups without reservations are admitted
on a space available basis. Payments for
admission by check or cash only. Holding
capacities strictly enforced.
The Mission of the California Department
of Parks and Recreation is to provide for
the health, inspiration and education of
the people of California by helping to
preserve the states’s extraordinary
biological diversity, protecting its most
valued natural and cultural resources, and
creating opportunities for high quality
California State Parks
Visitor Information Guide
• Commercial tour companies will be charged
regular admission price at the park where
• School groups with reservations will be
admitted free of charge at all venues unless
• Requests for special assistance for persons
with disabilities should be identified when
making reservations with Reserve America.
• Due to the number of no-shows at the
Historic Sites venues, groups that fail to show
for a reserved venue will be invoiced $25.00
per no show.
• Fees subject to change.
School group reservations call toll free: (866) 2404655 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m., 7 days a week Pacific
Commercial group reservations call toll free:(866)
361-5111 8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. M-F.
For additional site information, maps and teacher
background materials, Visit the California State
Parks Website at: www.parks.ca.gov.
HISTORIC STATE PARK SITES
STATE CAPITOL MUSEUM
10th and L Street
Guided tours provide an understanding of
California’s complex and dynamic legislature. In addition, the guides interpret the
Capitol’s history, architecture and symbols. Historic offices offer a glimpse into
the Capitol’s past and museum rooms
convey a perspective on current issues.
Maximum 35 people. Wheelchair accessible. Listening devices upon request.
(1 hr - Guided Tour)
LELAND STANFORD MANSION
4th – 12th grades only.
Leland Stanford Mansion State Historic
Park, a National Historic Landmark, was
the 19th century home of Leland and
Jane Stanford. Today the Mansion welcomes leaders from around the world as
the State’s official reception center and
public museum. Allow 30 minutes for this
guided tour. There are adult and youth
fees; children five and under are free.
For more information, call (916) 3246088 or (916) 324-0575 and press 03.
THE CALIFORNIA MUSEUM FOR HISTORY, WOMEN AND THE ARTS
The California Museum offers fun and
educational programs and tours. Students have the opportunity to learn about
California and the nation through the
gallery-based programs. Developed by an
experienced educator with specific reference to California’s curriculum standards,
the Museum offers a range of resources
California State Parks does not discriminate
against individuals with disabilities. To receive
this publication in an alternate format contact
the California State Parks Concessions &
Reservations Division at (916) 653-7733.
P.O. BOX 942896
For Information Call:
Outside the U.S.
(888) 877-5738, TTY
Cover photo: Marshall Gold Discovery SHP
© 2009 California State Parks
for discovery and learning to classroom
teachers. These resources are provided in a
ready format that encourages and supports
the efforts of teachers in addressing the
natural and cultural diversity of California,
the growth of the world-class economy, and
the workings of our democracy. The Museum features exhibits on pioneering families, California Mission art, and the Remarkable Women Series with Latinas: the Spirit
of California. For more information on our
current exhibits, check our website at www.
CALIFORNIA STATE INDIAN MUSEUM
26th & K Street
displays a comprehensive collection
of artifacts relating
to California Indian
without reservations are admitted
on a space available basis. Carrying capacity
enforced. (30 min Self-guided Tour)
for 2nd floor of Central Building.
(1 hr - Sound-Assisted, Self-guided Tour)
GOVERNOR’S MANSION SHP
16th & H Street
Elegant Victorian mansion built in 1877.
Former home to California’s governors
from John Pardee through Ronald Reagan.
No strollers allowed. Due to limited holding
capacity, large drop-in groups not advised.
Wheelchair lift available. For information
regarding this site, call (916) 323-3047. (40
min - Guided Tour)
MARSHALL GOLD DISCOVERY SHP
Highway 49 in
This is the site of
the discovery at
Sutter’s MiII that
triggered the California Gold Rush.
Groups with a valid
check in at the park
an hour before or
after their scheduled arrival time.
For Bekeart’s gold
California State Indian Museum (redwood canoe) panning programs
SUTTER’S FORT SHP
call (530) 295-1850,
27th & L Street
Coloma Theater melodrama call (530) 626This is the oldest restored fort in the West.
5282. Other park programs call (530) 622Construction on the adobe fort began in
3470. Buses must park in the North Beach
1840 by Captain Johann Augustus Sutter.
parking lot. Groups without reservations are
Groups without reservations are admitted
admitted only on a space available basis.
on a space available basis. For informa(Reservations at the park are for self-guided
tion regarding this site, please call (916)
visits - allow 2 to 4 hrs)
445-4422. Wheelchair accessible, except
CALIFORNIA STATE RAILROAD MUSEUM
The California State Railroad Museum’s
interpretive staff provides a basic orientation
to your group prior to the beginning of your
self-guided tour of the museum. Throughout
your tour, uniformed docents are available to
answer questions and provide information.
Themes to explore within the museum
include the Transcontinental Railroad, the
Agricultural Development of California,
Passenger Travel in the 19th and 20th
Centuries, and the People of the Railroad.
(1 hr Self-guided Tour)
4th-6th grades only
This is a 40-minute interpretive
program including “City of the
Plain,” a 12-minute audio-visual
production on Sacramento from
the Gold Rush to today. The
program emphasizes Gold Rush
history and material culture in
EMIGRANT TRAIN: LAST STOP,
CALIFORNIA! (Tour A)
4th-6th grades only. There is a
per-person charge. Teachers ride
This program begins with a 50minute, hands on history tour of
the Central Pacific Passenger
Station (with strong emphasis on
the Emigrant Trains of the late
1800s). Students are escorted
to the Sacramento Southern
Railroad Depot for a 40-minute
vintage train ride along the
Founded in 1823, Mission San Francisco
de Sonoma was the last San Franciscan
mission established in Alta California.
Today, part of the original priest’s quarters
and a chapel dating from 1841-42 are left
to mark the mission’s site. Secularized in
1834, the mission served as the parish
church of Sonoma until 1881. For information regarding this site, call (707) 9389560. (45 min - Guided Tour)
GENERAL VALLEJO’S HOME
Site of General Vallejo’s second home
in Sonoma. Built in 1847 and known as
Lachyma Montis, an American-style Victorian home. Visitor center and museum are
housed in the Swiss chalet, a Tudor-style
structure that once served as a storage
house and granary. For information regarding this site, call (707) 938-9559. (45 min
- Guided Tour)
Mexican garrison and scene of the Bear
Flag Revolt of 1846. Self-guided tour of
the soldiers living quarters and museum
of California history. Self-playing video of
the history of Sonoma State Historic Park.
Bookstore on site. For specific information
regarding this site, call (707) 938-9560. (45
min - Self-guided Tour)
PETALUMA ADOBE SHP
Once part of General Mariano Vallejo’s
vast agricultural empire, this restored adobe displays examples of early California
rancho furnishings and equipment. Made
from adobe brick and redwood, its design
SCHOOL TRAIN RIDE ONLY (Tour B)
There is a per-passenger charge. Teachers
This tour is perfect for younger students.
Students learn what it was like to travel by
train during the 1920s. The ride on vintage
railroad cars takes 40 minutes and is
supervised by knowledgeable docents.
TRANSCONTINENTAL RAILROAD: FROM
HORSES TO HORSEPOWER! (Tour C)
4th-6th grades only. There is a per-group
This is a 30-minute hands-on interactive
program, which traces the development
of the Transcontinental Railroad. It begins
with Theodore Judah’s dream of a railway
that connected the nation from coast to
coast; its construction, completion and its
consequences, as it impacted not only
California, but the whole country.
INTERPRETIVE HANDCAR PROGRAM
4th-6th grades only. There is a per-group
This hands-on program gives students
the opportunity to experience the trials,
tribulations, and hardships associated with
the heavy labor performed by maintenance
workers. It is designed to provide school
children with a safe experience in the
operation of the most basic of railroad
Located in Jamestown, this
combines industrial heritage
and railroad history with the lore
of Hollywood’s film industry.
The Railtown 1897 Interpretive
Center, the authentic
Roundhouse and shops and the
Depot Store (a railroad specialty
gift shop) are among the Park’s
unique year-round offerings.
Steam train rides are offered
weekends during the spring,
summer, and fall. For more
information, check: www.csrmf.
is typical of Hispanic architecture. For
information regarding this site, call (707)
762-4871. (45 min - Guided Tour)
SAN JUAN BAUTISTA SHP
San Juan Bautista State Historic Park, in
the city of San Juan Bautista, is part of a
nationally recognized Historic District and
fronts the old Historic Plaza and Mission
San Juan Bautista, which has operated
as a working church since its founding.
The surrounding architecture represents
both Spanish and Mexican style adobe
structures from the first half of the 1800s,
as well as American-period styled
buildings from the
second half of
the same century.
There are four main
buildings within San
Juan Bautista SHP:
The Plaza Hotel,
Adobe, the Plaza Hall/Zanetta House, and
the Plaza Stables, which can be visited
while in the park. San Juan Bautista is
a very popular destination for 4th grade
school classes studying California History.
Many educators bring students to visit the
neighboring mission but come to the park
for quality interpretive programs led by
park staff. For specific information, please
visit www.parks.ca.gov. For Mission reservations and questions, please call (831)
The following programs are available
at San Juan Bautista SHP with reservations:
CALIFORNIA OVER TIME
A park interpreter will, in an historic setting, take a class through the different
time periods and cultures, in California,
relevant to 4th grade curriculum. Selected
students may get to put their faces into
pictures with cutouts and “become” characters in history. This program helps students integrate their classroom learning
with what they experience when they visit
the park. The eras from the Native American period up to the Gold Rush/Statehood
time, circa 1850 are covered. This program is wheelchair accessible. A per class
charge is payable
upon arrival at
San Juan Bautista. Check in at
front desk of the
Plaza Hotel. (1 hr
This program focuses on the Mission
period of time. A class broken down into
small groups of about five students each
will “design” a mission using clues and
information given by the interpreter. This
is a hands-on activity, which encourages
critical thinking while learning about the
background behind the creation of the
Mission system in California. This program is wheelchair accessible. A per class
charge is payable upon arrival at San
Juan Bautista. Check in at front desk of
the Plaza Hotel.
(1 hr - Program)