wildflowers of nevada county

Small Town Gems


Spring and summer in Nevada County make for incredible wildflower hikes.

While checking out the South Yuba River, don’t miss the Historic Barn and conserved Wagon collection that visually illustrates “The Story of Two Hundred Years of Transportation” from Western Nevada County to the gold and silver mining fields.

The Penn Valley Rodeo is a family friendly event that spans a full weekend! Get your cowboy boots and hat, and get ready for a roarin’ time!

Thriving fall colors paint our county in brilliant orange, reds, and yellows. You can even go apple-picking or find pumpkin patches nearby!

Visiting for winter? You have to see the Country Christmas Faire!

The Strawberry Music Festival is a five-day, family-friendly campout with live music featuring nationally recognized touring acts and local up-and-coming performing artists.


There’s no shortage of things to do around Nevada County.

Change the routine! Check out nearby towns and special places around Truckee.

Many communities in Nevada County have beautifully preserved the historic flavor from the Gold Rush days.

All around Nevada County, one may be fortunate enough to stumble upon some unexpected historical landmarks, antique shops with rare finds, and some of the most beautiful hiking trails untouched by masses of people. When strolling around these small towns, you can discover small-town secrets and stories of ages past. While hiking the extensive forested areas, you might find old mining equipment covered by vines and wildflowers. 

The small community of Rough and Ready exemplifies country living. One of Nevada County’s first settlements, Rough and Ready celebrates its place in history and is located a short drive from Bridgeport, home to the longest single-span wooden bridge in America. Wildflowers, fall colors, and historic walks, as well as gold panning and living history days, are offered throughout the year.

Just six miles outside of Grass Valley, Penn Valley is a world unto itself. The tight-knit community embraces the outdoors and wildlife. Take a picnic and games to the Western Gateway Park for the day, and in the evening spread out a blanket and snacks for their Outdoor Family Movie Night! If you’re visiting midweek, drop by the Tasty Thursday Farmers Market which operates year-round. You can spend a lovely afternoon at Gray Pine Winery touring the wine caves and tasting rare, small-batch wines. 

First settled in 1849, the little town of Washington was one of the first places on the South Yuba River where gold was discovered. By 1880, miners in Washington had recovered over $10,500,000 in gold. Today, during the summer months it swells with visitors who come for the swimming, hiking, and camping. A local’s favorite is the Washington Hotel overlooking the South Yuba River. Get a cold beverage from the bar and a bite to eat at this landmark.

While staying in Grass Valley or Nevada City, change up the routine and check out antique stores or unique book stores such as Hardy Books; specializing in “all things Californian”, Hardy Books is a rare and out-of-print book and ephemera seller located in Nevada City, California. You’re sure to find something truly unique! Stop for craft coffee at Fable Coffee while in downtown Grass Valley and then mosey on to local art galleries containing striking, inspiring art.