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“The Birthplace of California”

Donner Memorial State Park and Emigrant Trail Museum
Ranked #1 of 32 things to do in Truckee
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: This museum documents the fascinating and tragic history of the Donner Party's journey to the west coast.
Reviewed 26 January 2018

Donner Memorial Park is a fantastic place to visit. The new (and older) Museums are absolutely awesome, and work to educate folks on local history as well as the Donner Party. Great camping and lake access as well.

1  Thank SugarBowlSanta
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 22 January 2018

A very moving & inspiring memorial to people’s determination.The car park was excellent & the museum was most interesting.The trail was very informative.
A place to reflect on human nature.

1  Thank Roger B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 January 2018

Fabulous! The trails are beautiful and the Emigrant Trail Museum is not to be missed. It is a wonderful place for children to see the wagon trains and the hardships that people had to go through.

1  Thank RISA L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 January 2018 via mobile

We stopped at Donner State Park to enjoy a picnic lunch and learn more about the Donner Party. There were plenty of picnic tables to enjoy lunch and the visitor center was well done and informative. The park is beautiful with several trails to hike, a river to kayak or fish, and an enormous memorial in honor of the Donner party.

Thank Tannams
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 10 January 2018

Spotted the story of the doomed Donner party in the Lonely Planet guidebook for California (page 388 7th edition) and had to check out the Emigrant Trail Museum to find out more and visit the spot where it all happened. US$5 to park also covers entry to the centre for your vehicle passengers. The staff run a 25-minute presentation on the hour which explains what happened. The friendly staff actually played the video at half past the hour for us to save us having to wait. Interpretation displays cover the Donner Party, railroad and highway pioneers, including lots of info on the local native Indian tribe and the contribution made by Chinese workers to cutting the railway through the Sierra Nevada. Monument outside gives an excellent indication of how high the snowfall was in 1846 for the Donner Party (the top of the plinth marks the depth) and is a memorial to the pioneering men, women and children that traversed the area to open up California in the 19th century.
Overall, well worth a look and great value.

2  Thank MarkDip
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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