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Top Activities in Orange County

See all 555 things to do in Orange County

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What to Do in Orange County: Must See Attractions

Orange County Attractions

Nestled between San Diego and Los Angeles in Southern California, Orange County attracts beach dwellers and culture mavens from around the world. From huge amusement parks to sleepy coastal towns, attractions in Orange County run the gamut of fun attractions. Whether you are in the area on a family vacation or grabbing a weekend getaway with your significant other, there is something to do in the County of Orange that will make your trip memorable.

Areas & Neighborhoods

More than two dozen cities call Orange County home. While many communities in the county are along the Pacific Coast, others offer inland activities. One thing is sure: There is no shortage of fun things to do in Orange County neighborhoods.

Anaheim — This Orange County city is best known as being home to the House of Mouse, and indeed the world-famous amusement park here is what draws in most visitors. Still, when you’ve ridden your fair share of rides you can also enjoy local attractions like Yorba Regional Park.

Newport Beach — Newport is a seaside community spilling over with charm, spectacular ocean views, and plenty of luxury amenities. Indulge in a spa day or spend some time in a harbor-front boutique.

Irvine — Located inland, Irvine has a bounty of restaurants and shopping. The most notable attraction in this city is the Irvine Spectrum Center, where you will find more than just eateries and shops. The entertainment complex also has amenities like a giant Ferris wheel and seasonal ice skating rink.

San Juan Capistrano — This city has more historical significance than many of its neighbors. The San Juan Capistrano Mission is located here, which dates back to 1776.

Things to See in Orange County

Things to do in Orange County aren’t all action packed, despite the plethora of thrill rides and outdoor activities in the region. You can also catch a show at one of the county’s many theaters, including Chance Theater and Costa Mesa Playhouse. There are also lots of places to take photos of the coast, such as Crystal Cove State Park in Laguna Beach. Don’t forget to make your way to San Clemente Pier to catch a stunning California sunset.

Things to Do & Attractions in Orange County

When you hit the road to track down more things to do in Orange County, CA, you will soon find yourself spoiled for choice. Orange County activities span land and sea, ranging from relaxing sailing excursions off the shores of Catalina Island to hikes along San Onofre State Beach. Adrenaline junkies will enjoy amusement Park tours from Orange County, which encompass the likes of Knott’s Berry Farm® and the House of Mouse. If you have some cash to spend, Orange County will feel like a playground. You can shop your way through impressive retail centers such as Fashion Island in Newport Beach and The Outlets at Orange in the city of Orange. Of course, there is always the option of taking a day trip: You can get to LA or San Diego County in just a few hours most of the time, even with Southern California traffic.

Things to Do in Orange County with Kids

There are loads of unforgettable experiences in Orange County that the entire gang will love. These are some of the top family friendly experiences around.

Free Things to Do in Orange County

Some say the best things in life are free. Be sure to explore the following around Orange County:

Irvine Museum - Jam-packed with exhibits and objects, this gallery is a paradise for minds that thirst for knowledge.

Pittsford Park - Give the kids a good time or be a big kid again yourself — this place was built for fun.

Northwood Gratitude and Honor Memorial - Soak up some of the interesting history of the area through this attraction.

San Joaquin Wildlife Santuary - Organize a picnic and enjoy a leisurely stroll around the interesting plants.

Learn More About Orange County | Blog


Frequently Asked Questions

What to do in Orange County on a rainy day?

There's no need to splish, splash and splosh your way through a rainy day when there are loads of great indoor activities like these to try:

What is Orange County famous for?

Your days will be busy with all of these noteworthy attractions to check off your checklist:

  • Disneyland®
  • Disney California Adventure® Park
  • Knott's Berry Farm
  • University of California-Irvine

What should I not miss in Orange County?

Put these attractions at the top of your sightseeing list to get the most out of your trip:

  • Irvine Spectrum Center
  • Honda Center
  • Angel Stadium of Anaheim
  • Huntington Beach Pier

Are there cheap things to do in Orange County?

If you're vacationing on a tight budget, think about adding these cheap and cheerful tours and activities to your to-do list:

What can you do in Orange County for free?

You'll hardly have time to dig your wallet out of your backpack with so many fantastic free attractions:

  • Main Beach Park
  • Irvine Spectrum Center
  • Huntington Beach Pier
  • Downtown Disney® District