San Diego to Sacramento Road Trip Guide


San Diego is one of the most popular cities in the Golden State and is full of fun things to do. If you’ve ever been to San Diego, you’ll know that you can expect sunny skies nearly every single day of the year. Many locals enjoy going to Mission Beach, Seaworld, and Balboa Park. San Diego is known for many things and has the nickname “America’s Finest City” thanks to the endless miles of white sand beaches.

It’s a great place to pitch a tent right on the beach or park the motorhome and watch the sunset fall behind the horizon. Many locals love taking weekends to go on a San Diego to Sacramento road trip. The trip is a little over 500 miles total and around nine hours without stops. But road trips are made for pit stops to see the unique and entertaining things along the way. Let’s check out five points of interest along that way to Sacramento that are perfect for families with kids of any age!

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Max RV length
Max trailer Length
Road trip length: 3-5 days
Recommend rig: motorhome
audience: family

Point of Interest

Children’s Museum of Stockton

The kids will likely be ready for another indoor stop that will be more than entertaining. Thankfully, the Children’s Museum of Stockton is on the way to Sacramento. You will be welcomed by the colorful giant toy soldier statues on the outside of the building. Once you’re inside there are over 22,000 square feet to explore, keeping your children entertained for hours.

There are rotating exhibits at the Children’s Museum of Stockton, but you’ll always find about 40 exhibits there at all times. Kids of all ages will enjoy visiting there and you can even rent it out for a birthday party! There are events throughout the month and even an art studio where you can create something to remember your road trip by!

San Luis National Wildlife Refuge

If you haven’t gotten enough of the great outdoors during your road trip, make a pit stop at San Luis National Wildlife Refuge. You’ll have around 120 miles left of your journey and it’s worth checking out and you’ll have plenty of room to stretch your legs. While zoos are amazing, seeing wildlife roam in their natural habitat can be breathtaking. There are several animals that call the wildlife refuge home, including large elks and bears.

It’s important not to approach any wild animal and to clean up after yourself if you have a picnic in order to keep their home clean. You won’t have to go far if you need to hit the hay before the last leg of your journey as you can park the motorhome there and get some rest. As a bonus, the stars shine extra bright here and are worth checking out!

Los Padres National Forest

It’s time to get away from the crowds at Disney and delve headfirst into nature. Making a pit stop at Los Padres National Forest is the perfect way to unplug from the business of the real world. Los Padres National Forest sits at nearly 9,000 feet above sea level, making it a great spot to get in some hiking. You could even unload the mountain bike and explore the forest on two wheels!

If you’re still tired from Disneyland, lay down a towel and relax at the beach with a good book and some snacks! If you’re visiting in the winter, you’ll still be able to enjoy visiting Los Padres National Forest. You could cast a reel and catch fresh dinner for your entire family. There’s also plenty of wildlife to see and you could even get in some cross-country skiing if there’s snow!


Making your way up towards Anaheim, California, there’s no doubt that the kids will be begging to stop at the happiest place in the world, Disneyland. If it’s in your budget, there’s nothing quite like the magical world of Walt Disney. There you will find several rides and attractions that will keep the entire family entertained for hours. You’ll be able to Mickey, Minnie, and your child’s favorite princess or cartoon character.

There are over 20 different attractions to explore during your stay and the dining options seem endless. You can get a quick cup of Dole Whip or sit down at a movie-themed restaurant for a full meal. Don’t forget to stay for the nightly fireworks if you’re visiting in the summer or the weekend fireworks for off-season travelers. Consider staying at Anaheim RV Park if you need some rest after a long day at Disneyland.

The San Diego Zoo

Before hitting the road, consider stopping at the San Diego Zoo for a few hours of fun with amazing animals. With over 3,500 different animals and 650 subspecies to see, you’re bound to see something you never have before! There are classic zoo animals like lions, giraffes, and monkeys. You’ll also get to see unique animals like anaconda snakes, white foxes, the babirusa, and more.

There are also plenty of cool plants to check out including flowers and ferns. You can explore the many trails within the zoo and even grab a bite to eat. If you need a place to park the motorhome after a long day at the San Diego Zoo, there are plenty of RV parks nearby. San Diego RV Park and Admiral Baker RV Campground are both great options that have enough amenities to keep you comfortable overnight.


After a day or two taking in the sights and sounds of California, you’ve made it Sacramento. Now that your journey is over, you can park the motorhome at one of the many RV parks in Sacramento before exploring the city. Whether you visit the California State Roadside Museum, Sutter’s Fort State Historic Park, or the classic Old Sacramento Waterfront District, it’s a beautiful city to visit any time of the year!

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