Sacramento is a pretty big place, so taking a walking tour does require some planning. Of course, there’s no law that says you can’t hop a cab for somewhere a bit too far for putting the shoe to the pavement, but walking does have the advantage of really experiencing all the city has to offer. Keep your eyes open, as the downtown area especially is loaded with public art. Notice all the murals on the sides of buildings as you wander. Lace up your scoots, and see what you can find.
Crocker Art Museum
216 0 St.
Sacramento, CA 95814
(916) 808-7000
www.crockerartmuseum.com

Start here, or finish here, but do make the Crocker a major stop on your tour. This is a real gem in the Sacramento art scene. The permanent collections are amazing, and the showings that rotate comprise artists of all media, styles, and genres. You’ll have to decide in advance which part of the place you want to see, or you could very well spend your entire day, or days, here. The cafe is a fine place to either fuel up for your next venue, or to just enjoy good coffee and a crumpet or two while you rest a bit and enjoy what you’ve already seen.

Elliot Fouts Gallery
1831 P. St.
Sacramento, CA 95811
(916) 736-1429
www.efgallery.com

Elliot Fouts Gallery has been a major part of the Sacramento art scene since 1999. The gallery features original fine art, and the emphasis is on landscape and still life painting. This is contemporary and exciting works on canvas and in clay. Gregory Kondos, Tony Natsoulas, David Gilhooly, Roy DeForest, Ali Cavanaugh for starters, just to give you a taste of the artists whose work graces the gallery. There are many more, and it’s likely you’ll find your need for art pretty well filled up here.

Old Soul Company
1716 L St. (Rear Alley)
Sacramento, CA 95811
(916) 443-7685
www.oldsoulco.com

Strictly speaking, this isn’t an art gallery. But it is, in more ways than one. First, it’s just uber cool that they are in an astounding alley, and when you walk in you’re greeted with sacks of coffee beans. Within a few steps you’ll find yourself ordering a superb coffee, along with a great crumpet to go with it. You need this after walking around a bit. Take a look at the walls – they are covered with art work, some of the most pure artwork anywhere. It’s art work from young children from local schools. Kindergarten through 3d Grade, from the William Land Park Elementary Mandarin Immersion Program, was recently on display. This is as real as it gets. Delicious too, as it could be where you stop for lunch.

Related: Best Sketching Classes In Sacramento

Artists’ Collaborative Gallery
129 K St.
Sacramento, CA 95814
(916) 444-7125
www.artcollab.com

This is the oldest ongoing artists’ co-op in Sacramento. They have existed for over 30 years. At their new digs in Old Sacramento, it’s an easy walk from the Crocker. The artists are all local and the span of work includes oil, acrylic, and watercolor paintings. Photography, glass, ceramics, textiles, gourd, basketry, jewelry and sculpture round out the ever changing collection. One of the benefits of a co-op is the artists who are shown in the gallery run the gallery. The artist who created the piece that’s captured your eye just may be in the gallery working.

Verge Center For The Arts
625 S St.
Sacramento, CA 95811
916-448-2985
www.vergeart.com

Continuing the downtown theme, head over to the Verge Center. It’s a nice walk, and you may spot a mural or two along the way. Verge is a mix of things: a gallery showing contemporary work of local, national and international artists, a performance venue, and an expansive art studio. There are plans for 37 studios, half of which are already in place. Studio work from emerging artists is fresh, vibrant, and could be your neighbor. The work here is as eclectic as you would expect from a live, working gallery.

Related: Best Exhibits For Kids In Sacramento

Charles Ferris is a freelance writer who has lived in the Sierra, halfway between Sacramento and Lake Tahoe, for the last 41 years. In 2010 he retired from teaching after 36 years . He and his wife hike, kayak, cross country ski, snow shoe, ride mountain bikes and road bikes, year round. His work can be found at Examiner.com.