Consisting of around 1000 miles of waterways, the California Delta is where the San Joaquin River meets with the Sacramento River, before it heads out towards the bay. Considered to be the wet and wild heartland of California, there are many places to explore in and around the California Delta, but these are some of the highlights.
One of the earliest settlements along the Sacramento River, Walnut Grove is the largest town in the California Delta, and its Japanese and Chinese influences can be felt as soon as you arrive. The town is a vibrant one, home to everything from markets to a museum to banks and churches, and the friendly residents here, many of which are local farming families, are always happy to chat to visitors about their idyllic town.
Clarksburg Wine Country
Clarksburg Wine Country is home to more than 12 different wineries and tasting rooms, and with the area enjoying a long growing season, the wines that are produced here are considered to be world-class. Depending on how much time you have to spare, you can choose to tour just one winery, or visit all of them, with each one hosting a range of special events throughout the year.
While Stockton is renowned for its many festivals, it is also famous for being the largest inland seaport in California, with a deep-water channel and an ever-bustling port. The promenade by the water is the ideal spot for a leisurely stroll, especially since you will be able to indulge in the popular local activity of ship gazing, taking in everything from intricately decorated personal boats to unbelievably vast commercial ships. For those who want to get out onto the water themselves, the Herman & Helen’s Marina offers a range of boats to rent, from fishing boats to houseboats, enabling you to add a whole new dimension to your trip.
Rio Vista was established in 1858 as a stop-off point for mariners and gold miners that were travelling between San Francisco and Sacramento. This is another of the many historical towns to be found in the California Delta, and many of its original features are still standing, from 19th century tree-lined streets to Victorian and Californian ranch style houses. There are also two museums in this town that will teach you more about the history of the town and the delta, and, for those who want to stay active, plenty of water sport opportunities. The Delta Windsurf and Watersports Co. is where you should go, as they offer sports such as windsurfing, stand-up paddleboarding, kite boarding, jump sailing, and kite surfing. For those who are new to any of these water sports, the local shops nearby will be able to provide lessons from qualified instructors, enabling you to really make the most out of your time in Rio Vista.
The winding waterways of the California Delta are abundant with natural beauty, and are always a joy to explore, no matter the time of year. Whether you spend the summer taking advantage of the area’s water sport opportunities, or the winter discovering the history behind the delta’s quaint towns, this is an area that is truly thriving, and has so much to offer.