To see Davis the way it’s Car Free mayor, Robb Davis would want you to see it, come by train. The station you will arrive at looks out
on the outdoor seating patio of the beautiful Tres Hermanas Mexican restaurant. A popular eatery, you will want to make a note of it to satisfy the appetite you will have worked up at the end of your riding day.
Your point of arrival is also one block from the fabulous Hallmark Inn UC Davis where if you did not bring a bike they have complementary bikes you can use. The Hallmark, a three-star hotel, is nestled at the base of an alive bustling downtown filled with eateries drinking establishments coffee houses, performance venues and young people from the University in Davis.
After you got yourself settled in, maybe even enjoyed their complementary breakfast and/or a swim in their private pool looked down upon by a striking mural that depicts life in the city of Davis, there are many places for you to go.
If on day one you want to just stretch your legs, and see the university that this small city takes its name and much of its direction from, the University of California at Davis, you can get lost for a day or more at this massive campus, the biggest in the University of California system.
You can start by following First Street for a block and a half to the charming Whole Foods Market nestled in the Davis Commons complex the site of our 2016 Davis NBG Fest .
You can choose to eat breakfast at Whole Foods and/or buy treats you can have with you for your tour of the campus. The UC Davis Arboretum which introduces you to the east end of the sprawling college grounds is just beyond the parking lot that sits behind Whole Foods.
In the breezeway you will take to get there, as you leave the sprawling lawns and old growth trees of the Commons behind, you will pass the Hot Italian pizza bar. Another option for your lunch or evening meal, there you can enjoy guilt-free, genuinely nutritious, sugar-free and organic pizza
And as you go out the parking lot, soon the trail to UC Davis begins. If another day you want to explore South Davis on the other side of I-80, here is where you can turn left on the path that will take you under the freeway and to that part of town. In doing so, you can follow the arrows on the roads and paths that tell you that you are on the Davis Loop.
Continuing straight from Whole Foods, however, will position you in the magic of Cache Creek. The man made trails and bridges here will inspire you to know the creativity that can be had when a group of people choose to make the most of what they have available to them. A raging river and beautiful waterfalls do not exist here, but the quiet creek and native grasses and plants that do have all been maximized to give the ducks that make this their home a place worthy of your visit as well!
If you stay on the left side of the creek it will not be long before you go under a road and reach a redwood forest that almost seems out of place in the world that surrounds it. And it is. It was planted in the late 1930’s by UCD Botany Professor, T. Elliot Weier, who recruited students to keep it watered until it could stand on its own. It is the only redwood forest for hundreds of miles around.
Once you pedal through its trails which shade you from the hot sun in this part of California, a bridge will take you to the other side of the creek and Lake Spafford. An idyllic setting for a picnic, a huge lawn spreads out from under the redwood trees to look out on the lake that has resulted from this part of the creek being damned. A small family of otters can often be seen gliding through the water near the trees that hang over it
You can ride the paved creek trails for a little over a mile to another park setting filled with lawns, even a handsome rock building, set in a flower garden, that houses a public restroom.
Cache Creek and its charming trails run for just under two miles to form the southern edge of the campus.In all, the 100 acres that make up the UC Davis Arboretum form a loop 3.5 miles in length and provide for a public garden with over 2,400 different kinds of trees (31,000 of them) and plants. If at any point you leave the trails and head north you will be on the main UCD campus
On Part 2 of this tour we’ll spend some time on the UC campus before we stop at Ken’s Bike Shop and imbibe in the healthy food and drink at Sun and Soil Juice Company across the street on our way to Grocery Outlet and our tour of East Davis.
Ken’s, voted best bike shop in Yolo County, ten years in a row!
A common school day sight in Davis!