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BY ED MURRIETA

SACRAMENTO — Visitors to California’s state capital are more familiar with its freeways than they are with its waterways. The Sacramento River skirts the city. The American River flows through suburbia. Miss Sacramento’s natural attractions and related activities — boating and floating, eating and drinking, biking and golfing, picnicking and exploring, sleeping and selfies — and miss the leisurely heart of the region, especially now, from late summer to early fall when the waters are mild and aglow. Here, then, is our guide to enjoying the best of the Sacramento River, the American River and a town at their confluence called River City.

Boat
Marinas. Dock or launch. Tie up at river party scenes.

Float
Rent pontoon boats for large or small parties.

Cruise
Enoy catered meals, cocktails and watery views on a paddlewheeler.

Paddle
Raft for leisure or row for recreation.  

Pedal
See the most scenic stretches of 38-mile American River Bike Trail.

Eat
Enjoy best food in the most scenic settings.

Drink
Enjoy the best beer and cocktails in the most scenic settings.

Swim
Safest, cleanest and most accessible beaches and swimmin’ holes.  

Picnic
The prettiest parks along the rivers.

Explore
Nature center, wildlife area and fish hatchery.

Golf
Tee up against the backdrop of the river.

Selfy
Three best spots for taking pictures of you and the river.

Sleep
The spanking-new Saywer Hotel offers river views, but the Delta King and Westin get you close to the water.

Fish
Nimbus Dam and Lake Washington.

Forage
Miner’s lettuce. Wild fennel. Elderberries.

Farm
Soil Born Farms along the American River Bike Trail.