Anaheim Packing House

5 Days In & Around Anaheim

When you mix beautiful scenery, fun-filled attractions, and desirable weather, it's easy to see why visitors consider Orange County, CA, an ideal vacation spot. Even if you only have a few days in OC, here are some suggestions on how to divide and conquer your stay.

Day 1 & 2: Happiest Stay on Earth

Start your Orange County vacation with a fantasy-filled adventure at the Disneyland Resort®, home of Disney's original theme park, Disneyland® Park, as well as Disney California Adventure® Theme Park. You’ll want to spend a day at each park especially given the new attractions and rides.

The Disneyland Resort is part of the greater Anaheim Resort which includes many sporting, entertainment, and dining options. Depending on the season, take the time to catch an Anaheim sporting event. Cheer on the Angels, Ducks or Bolts at a home game.

Day 3: Life's A Beach in OC

The minute you arrive in the OC, the coastal breeze will have you yearning for a day at the beach. With 42 miles of gorgeous coastline, you're in luck!  Pacific Coast Highway (referred to by locals simply as 'PCH') charts your route along the coast through Orange County's distinctive beach cities. Find the coastal community that best fits your personality.

Huntington Beach

Perhaps you’ve fantasized about hanging ten on a Pacific Ocean wave. Well, there’s no better place to do that than Huntington Beach, aka Surf City USA®. Surf culture is huge in OC and in HB surfing is king. Catch sight of world-class wave riders in the water and along the Surfing Walk of Fame. Huntington Pier is one of the longest concrete piers on the West Coast. Check out the memorabilia at the International Surfing Museum. A statue of Duke Kahanamoku, the father of surfing can be seen at the corner of Pacific Coast Highway and Main Street, located across the street from the restaurant that bears his name. Main Street is lined with restaurants, bars and the best surf wear shops in the country.

Laguna Beach

Laguna Beach is world-renowned for its striking beauty and reputation as an artists’ colony. Its picturesque and rugged coastline has inspired artists for decades and is a favorite for visitors. Visit any one of a number of art galleries, walk along historic Main Street Beach, or catch the sunset from the vista point of Heisler Park. Dining with a view and ambiance can be found at Las Brisas Restaurant, The Rooftop Bar or the House of Big Fish and Ice Cold Beer.

Newport Beach

You may remember a little show called The OC, which depicted the city of Newport Beach. Walk out on the piers, bike along the boardwalk and enjoy the laid-back atmosphere on the beach. After playing in the Fun Zone, be sure to take the auto ferry across to Balboa Island, a cozy, village-like community with quaint streets and shopping. There are also areas that you can stand up paddle to get the sense of a board beneath your feet and sneak in a bit of a work out as well. Cruise the harbor in an electric boat or other small watercraft.

Center stage in Southern California, Orange County presents a vivacious art scene, full of fascinating festivals, museums and performing arts venues. Whether you have a specific event in mind or they just want to explore the area's natural beauty and laid-back atmosphere, OC draws on a creative and culturally-diverse population of artists, musicians and performers.

Day 4: OC Arts and Culture

Center stage in Southern California, Orange County presents a vivacious art scene, full of fascinating festivals, museums and performing arts venues. Whether you have a specific event in mind or they just want to explore the area's natural beauty and laid-back atmosphere, OC draws on a creative and culturally-diverse population of artists, musicians and performers.

Visual Arts

Sawdust Art Festival is held every summer in Laguna Beach. There you will find the best artists in an oasis of shops, museums, galleries, and cottages all along Pacific Coast Highway. The festival includes the Pageant Of The Masters, a seasonal 2-hour show which features re-creations of classical and contemporary artwork, with live models in a picturesque ampitheater, live narration and a full orchrestra. If you happen to visit outside of the Summer season, Laguna is known for it's great art galleries of all different forms and tastes. Downtown Santa Ana is also known as an artist's haven.

Learning Attractions

The best type of learning tends to occur when the subject matter is compelling and fun. Here are some attractions that fit both descriptions.

Aquarium of the Pacific - Located 40 minutes from Anaheim, it is the fourth largest aquarium in the nation and displays over 11,000 animals in more than 50 exhibits that represent the diversity of the Pacific Ocean.
Bowers Museum of Cultural Art - This institution has organized the largest and most culturally significant exhibits in the country and is located 10 minutes from Anaheim.
Crystal Cathedral - A short drive from Anaheim, this house of worship is also an architectural marvel resembling a four-pointed star, with 10,000 panes of glass covering the web-like, translucent walls and ceiling.
Discovery Science Center - Orange County's premier science destination for kids is only 10 minutes away from Anaheim.
Lyon Air Museum - The Lyon Air Museum exhibit is comprised of authentic aircraft, rare vehicles and related memorabilia, with emphasis on the defining event of the 20th century - World War II. Founded by Major General William Lyon, Lyon Air Museum is located on the west side of John Wayne Airport and is only 20 minutes from Anaheim.
The MUZEO - Re-inventing the concept of a museum for 21st century audiences by transforming the museum experience to be interactive and ever-changing. Located in downtown Anaheim.
Fullerton Museum Center - Home of the Leo Fender Gallery, is dedicated to developing and presenting the best multidisciplinary exhibitions and educational programs in the areas of history, science and art and is located less than 20 minutes from Anaheim.
The Irvine Museum - This museum, located 20 minutes from Anaheim, is dedicated to the preservation and display of California art of the Impressionist Period (1890-1930).
Marconi Automotive Museum - Located 20 minutes from Anaheim, this 20,000-square-foot venue is nonprofit and raises money for children in the OC and showcases more than 75 Ferraris, Lamborghinis, high-performance muscle cars, vintage formula race cars and motorcycles.
Mission San Juan Capistrano - Founded in 1776, it is the seventh among the 21 California missions. Enjoy the lush gardens, museum rooms, adobe buildings, ruins, and koi-filled fountains at Orange County's number one historic site. Located 50 minutes from Anaheim and a great half day activity!
Newport Harbor Nautical Museum - Located in the center of Balboa Fun Zone, this museum is dedicated to preserving and promoting the nautical heritage of Newport Harbor, southern California and the eastern Pacific.
The Queen Mary - The historic ocean liner permanently docked in the harbor of Long Beach is 40 minutes from Anaheim and is located right next to the Aquarium of the Pacific.
Richard Nixon Presidential Library, Birthplace & Museum - Immerse yourself in presidential history at this museun that is located a short 20 minutes from Anaheim.
USS Midway Museum - Only 90 minutes south of Anaheim, this real naval aircraft carrier offers a once in a lifetime opportunity features a self-guided audio tour encompassing 60 exhibits and 25 authentic aircrafts.

Performing Arts

Orange County is also blessed with possessing some of the best performance venues around.
City National Grove of Anaheim is where you can see your favorite band up close and personal!  Located right next to the Angel's Stadium in Anaheim.
Honda Center is home of the Anaheim Ducks Hockey team but also houses some of the biggest names in music from Lady Gaga to U2. 
The House of Blues Anaheim is a great place for dinner and a concert and is located in the heart of Downtown Disney.
South Coast Repertory, a Tony-Award winning professional theater that presents dynamic plays on two beautiful stages.
Located in Costa Mesa, the Segerstrom Center for the Arts is one of the nation´s leading cultural destinations and is the heart of the region's theatre entertainment and district.
Musical Theatre West is a highly-respected performance venue located in Long Beach.
The Anaheim Ballet provides quality performances to audiences of balletomanes as well as novice ballet-goers and acts as a haven to talented Southern California artists and as a magnet to international talents

Day 5: Thrills and Entertainment

Besides having great weather, scenery and world-class attractions, Orange County is becoming more and more recognized for it's entertainment options. You could easily spend the at Knott's Berry Farm where you can find exciting roller coasters for the thrill seekers and fun rides for the kids at Camp Snoopy. Be sure to check out SIlver Bullet, a thrilling suspended coaster that will take you through six inversions and the Windseeker ride that takes you up more than 300 feet in the air! Don't forget to sample some of Mrs. Knott's famous chicken while you're there.

Family dining is taken to a whole new level of fun in Orange County with dinner theaters like Medieval Times Dinner & Tournament and Pirate’s Dinner Adventure.

Looking for something different and exciting to do during the day? Bring the family to experience some indoor exctiement at Flightdeck Air Combat Center where you can compete against family members in an authentic fighter jet simulation! People literally suit up, climb into their cockpits, and take to the skies as fighter pilots.

Take a fresh OC spin on bowling with Lucky Strike Lanes in Orange and 300 Anaheim Bowling & Entertainment Center at the Anaheim Gardenwalk. These locations take bowling to the nines with dedicated full-service bars, private lanes and gourmet food.