Have you found yourself stuck in the new-to-Orange-County doldrums? You just moved to Orange County and, when it comes to exploring the area, you have no idea where to begin. Sometimes you can unpack every moving box, perfectly place all your furniture, and finish decorating the house without feeling “settled in.” There are more places to visit in Orange County than you ever could in a lifetime. If you don’t know where to go, the task of exploring Orange County can be a bit overwhelming. You don’t have to figure it out on your own. Check off the activities on this list and you’ll feel like a local in no time!
1. GO TO THE BEACH. Any beach—they’re all beautiful! Each OC beach has its own vibe and draw. For instance, check out the Fun Zone at Balboa Island, catch a wave at Salt Creek or Crescent Bay, or gather your friends for a bonfire at Huntington or Aliso Creek Beaches.
2. WINE AND DINE YOURSELF. Orange County is full of edgy culinary creations. Grab a bite to eat from the Orange Circle in Old Town Orange, The Camp in Costa Mesa, or the expanding OC gourmet burger joint, Slaters 50/50.
3. CHECK OUT THE ARTIST SCENES. Stop by the many art galleries in Laguna Beach, or stroll through the monthly art walks in Downtown Santa Ana, Huntington Beach, and more.
4. REDISCOVER YOUR INNER CHILD AT DISNEYLAND. Whether you start off with an annual pass or simply visit for the day—your family can never outgrow the magic of The Happiest Place on Earth. Disneyland isn’t just a tourist attraction; it’s conveniently located in Anaheim so many locals stop in just for a meal or the fireworks show.
5. FIND THE NIGHTLIFE. On the surface, it would appear that there isn’t a lot to do at night in Orange County, but with a little digging you can find plenty of places to eat, drink, and be merry past 9 PM. Try Chapter One in Santa Ana for late-night specials, The Crow Bar in Corona Del Mar for a hipster beer experience, or Tustin Brewing Company for Monday evening trivia nights where the winner takes home cash.
6. HIKE ONE OF OC’S GORGEOUS TRAILS. Explore some of the majestic canyons and cliffs in Orange County. We recommend you don’t go alone and be sure to stay on the trail. Some local favorites are Black Star Canyon Falls, Barbara’s Lake Loop Trail, and Peter’s Canyon Lake View Trail.
7. GO SHOPPING. Orange County is known for its surplus of places to spend money. Indulge your inner shopaholic at the highest grossing mall in the United States—South Coast Plaza. If you’re more interested in outdoor malls, Fashion Island and The Irvine Spectrum are also popular shopping spots with plenty of entertainment, restaurants, and boutiques.
8. TRY A RANDOM FITNESS ROUTINE. OC locals are notorious for some of the most creative workouts in the nation. If you haven’t already, try something different like hot yoga, pure barre, or bel air pilates.
9. BRING YOUR DOG WITH YOU just about anywhere you go. Furry friends are welcome all over Orange County. Take your pup to the Dog Beach, coffee shop, restaurant patio, or outdoor mall. You’re bound to make some new friends when you bring your dog along.
10. ENJOY LOCALLY GROWN, ORGANIC PRODUCE. There are countless Farmers’ Markets that meet throughout Orange County during the week. Pick up some locally grown fruits, vegetables, and fresh cut flowers for your new home.
As your Orange County Movers, we take pride in our local community. There are countless ways to make the most of OC life, and we hope you savor each experience in your new hometown.