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Organization Title

Bidwell Mansion State Historic Park

Contact Information

(530) 895-6144

Park Hours

The Visitor Center is open Saturday - Monday 11 AM to 5 PM (Closed Tuesday-Friday).

Driving Directions to Bidwell Mansion SHP

From Highway 99: Take East First Avenue and go left onto The Esplanade, the Mansion is on your right(west).
From Highway 5: Take Highway 32 exit at Orland east 20 miles to West Sacramento Avenue. Turn left (east) onto West Sacramento Avenue to The Esplanade where you turn right (south).
The Mansion is located at 525 The Esplanade. The Visitor Center is open Wed. - Fri. 12-5 and Sat. & Sun. 10-5, tours on the hour. The last tour is at 4:00 pm.

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Camping and Lodging

Online reservations are not available for this park.

Brochures and Campground Maps

Upcoming Park Events

No events scheduled at this moment.

About Bidwell Mansion

Bidwell Mansion State Historic Park is a beautiful, three-story, 26 room Victorian House Museum that stands as a memorial to John and Annie Bidwell. John Bidwell was known throughout California and across the nation as an important pioneer, farmer, soldier, statesman, politician and philanthropist. Annie Ellicott Kennedy Bidwell, the daughter of a socially prominent, high ranking Washington official, was deeply religious, and committed to a number of moral and social causes. Annie was very active in the suffrage and prohibition movements.

The Bidwell's were married April 16, 1868 in Washington, D.C. with then President Andrew Johnson and future President Ulysses S. Grant among the guests. Upon arrival in Chico, the Bidwell's used the Mansion extensively for entertainment of friends. Some of the guests that visited Bidwell Mansion were President Rutherford B. Hayes, General William T. Sherman, Susan B. Anthony, Frances Willard, Governor Stanford, John Muir, and Asa Gray.

When constructed, Bidwell Mansion featured the most modern plumbing, gas lighting and water systems. The overall style of the three-story brick structure is that of an Italian Villa, an informal, warmly romantic style. The building's exterior is finished with a pink tinted plaster.

Holiday Events!


Bidwell Mansion State Historical Park will offer opportunities for families to take holiday photographs in selected areas of the Bidwell Mansion. You bring the camera and you take the pictures. No commercial photographers allowed. No flash photography is permitted.


Photograph sites will be available in front of the Christmas tree, Annie’s piano, and on the main hall stairs. The Mansion will be decorated in Victorian holiday style.


The charge is $20.00 for a 15 minute time slot. Pre-registration and pre-payment is required to hold a time slot. Days and times will be limited to Saturday, Sunday and Monday mornings from 10:00 am – 11:00 am starting November 28 through December 14, 2015.


Kick off the holiday season and join the Beulah Rebekah Lodge No. 60, Chico Women’s Club and Bidwell Mansion State Historic Park for a day-long Holiday Open House on Dec. 13. The festive Bidwell Mansion event will include musical performances held in the parlor of the Mansion and refreshments in the Visitor Center for guests to enjoy.


Performances will be held each hour beginning at 11 a.m. with the last one at 4 p.m. Staff and volunteers will be dressed in period costumes to welcome guests for tours of the first floor of the decorated, Victorian style mansion.


The Open House welcomes all ages and is free to the public, but tickets are required for each performance.  Tickets may be picked up at the Visitor Center Saturday through Monday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.  A limited number of tickets are available per hour, so guests are advised to obtain tickets early.


Musical presentations will take place inside the Mansion with the following musicians performing at these times:


11:00 AM – The Wright Keys Academy of Musical Arts

12:00 PM – Sounds of the Valley

1:00 PM – Sounds of the Valley

2:00 PM – Chico Children’s Choir

3:00 PM – N2Y (Never Too Young)

4:00 PM – North Valley Voice Studio Duet


California State Parks will offer special evening tours of the all three floors of the Bidwell Mansion on December 18 – 20 from 6:30-8:00. Tours will begin in the Bidwell Mansion SHP Visitor Center at 525 Esplanade, Chico.


Tickets for the Friday, Saturday and Sunday evening tours will cost $10.00 for adults and $4.00 for youth under 12 years of age. Tickets can be purchased at the Bidwell Mansion SHP Visitor Center, 525 Esplanade, Chico on Saturdays, Sundays, and Mondays from 11:00 AM – 5:00 PM.


The Mansion will be decorated in Victorian holiday style. Staff and volunteers dressed in period costumes will be available to answer questions or provide insight into the history of this special home. Visitors will be able to view the home at their own pace while listening to live music played on Annie Bidwell’s beautiful grand piano.

Location - Directions

The Mansion is located at 525 Esplanade.

From Highway 99:
  Take East First Avenue exit and head west.  Turn Left on Esplanade.  The park is located on the right hand side of the road at Memorial Way and Esplanade. 

From Highway 5:  Take Highway 32 exit at Orland east 20 miles to West Sacramento Avenue.  Turn left (east) onto West Sacramento Avenue to The Esplanade where you turn right (south).

Seasons/Climate Recommended Clothing

Summer and spring are warm; fall and winter can be cool. Layered clothing is advised. The mansion it temperature controlled.


Tours consist of three floors of Bidwell Mansion, including approximately 50 stairs.  The first floor of Bidwell Mansion is accessible via an exterior ramp.  The two upper levels are only accessible by stairs.  For visitors unable to climb stairs, an open-captioned video of the 2nd and 3rd floors may be viewed in the Visitor Center. 

The Visitor Center is completely accessible.  It includes restrooms, water fountain, a lobby, a museum store, an exhibit hall and a theater.

Available Activities and Facilities at Bidwell Mansion State Historic Park

Historical/Cultural Site
Picnic Areas
Env. Learning/Visitor Center
Exhibits and Programs
Guided Tours
Interpretive Exhibits
Family Programs
Drinking Water Available