Rio Vista is located in the eastern end of Solano County of the city. It is a small rural town which is 50 miles south of Sacramento and sits on the northwest bank of the Sacramento River. The town has an area of 7.1 square miles and approximately 5% of the town is water. Rio Vista has a warm-summer Mediterranean climate and lies in close proximity to California’s two mighty rivers – Sacramento and San Joaquin. The town offers scenic views of the California Delta.
The town had its original settlement several miles south of its current area. It was initially called Brazos del Rio and was founded by Colonel Nathan H. Davis in the year 1858. A flood that occurred in 1862 resulted in the town moving to its present location, on higher ground. It was later renamed Rio Vista, which means “river view”. The Rio Vista community was officially incorporated in 1893. The town was home to the United States Army Reserve Centre, Rio Vista from 1911 through 1992. Rio Vista has an interesting history of being visited by humpback whale, nicknamed Humphrey. The whale presented itself here despite the region being 60 miles upriver from the Pacific Ocean.
Rio Vista enjoys a peaceful and slow-paced existence with a collection of homes, recreational facilities, walking trails, lakes, golf courses and picturesque landscapes. The Delta Clubhouse is a 7,500 sq. ft. recreation center that includes outdoor pool, BBQ area, spa, art studio, and a library.
The entire downtown area can be walked through in just about 15 minutes. Bucolic boutiques and The Social Consignment Store stand out amongst the many attractions of the downtown. The Main Street of Rio Vista is lined with eateries and bars. Retail establishments, pet grooming stores, florists and other stores can be seen throughout the town. Rio Vista features the lively Bazz Festival every year, during the second week of October. The festival features live bands, a carnival, a street fair and a bass fishing competition. Being the largest annual event of Rio Vista, it is visited by tens of thousands of people yearly.
The town includes the Dutra Museum of Dredging, Rio Vista Museum, and Rio Vista Golf Club.
The town features the Rio Vista Bridge, which is a vertical-lift moveable bridge spanning the rivers in the Sacramento–San Joaquin River Delta. The Western Railway Museum located between Rio Vista and Suisun features the largest collection of Sacramento Northern Railway equipment. Foster’s Bighorn is another popular attraction in the town. It is world-famous for its collection of dead animals seen strung from the walls. The Sandy Beach County Park offers many activities, a few of which include sunbathing and picnicking, and the sandy beach is enjoyed by many families.
Highway 160 offers a wonderful drive to the town with a scenic view of the many delta waterways along the way. Flights are landed at the Rio Vista Municipal Airport. There are over 750 wind turbines belonging to three renewable energy projects, that lie close to the town.