Historic Mission San Juan Capistrano is a California icon. Perhaps most famous for visits from its annual guests of honor, the swallows, the Mission means many things to many people. For Californians, it is a powerful symbol of the state's complicated colonial history. For Catholics, it is a profound religious site, indicative of the Church's own complex heritage. History buffs spend hours reveling in the facility's many exhibits and displays, connecting viscerally with the sights, sounds and feelings of generations long past. For visitors of any background, it is an undeniably gorgeous place to spend an afternoon-replete with striking architectural elements and lovingly cared-for gardens.
This large, 95,000 square foot (8,825 square meter) eco-friendly facility is known as the Soka Performing Arts Center. Located on the Soka University of America campus in Aliso Viejo, this state-of-the-art center features a concert hall and theater both fully equipped with incredible acoustics designed by the same man who did the Walt Disney Hall in Los Angeles and the Suntory Hall in Tokyo. See amazing student performances as well as professional groups year round at this stunning venue.
A short walk from the bustling downtown Laguna Beach, this park is an amazing hidden oasis. The grassy bluff and the sandy beach with giant rocks and hidden caves makes this park a favorite spot for photographers, sunset watchers, picnickers, and even sea birds. There are also a variety of art stands selling local artwork.
Crystal Cove State Park spans 3.2 miles (5.15 kilometers) of beach and over 2000 acres (809.37 hectares) of wilderness. Visitors to the park can relax on the beach, hike or go horseback riding on the many trails that criss-cross the verdant landscape. Explore tide pools and hidden coves as well as canyon flora and fauna. Finally, the crystal clear waters have been designated as an underwater park and are great for scuba diving, skin diving, and underwater photography, thus covering all aspects of outdoor exploration.
Founded in 1920, the Laguna Playhouse is rich in history and local color. Used as a neighborhood center of culture and entertainment during World War II, the theater has long been a fixture in the Orange County arts scene. Even now the theater is known for offering fantastic live theater productions.
With a self-explanatory name, Pretend City Children's Museum is as it implies, a small "pretend" version of a city! Set up like a regular city over an expansive 28,000 square feet (2,600 square meters), this museum showcases displays like the Library, the City Hall, and The Farm. While traversing across this fascinating museum, children can interact with the displays and learn through play. Watch as your two-year-old has fun in the Orange Plaza while your eight-year-old pretends to be a firefighter at the Fire Station. Your children won't want to leave!
The West Coast Theatre is one of the oldest theaters of the city. It's a part of the National Register of Historic Places and is one of the must-visit places in the city.
Howe-Waffle House and Medical Museum is named so because it belonged to Dr. Willella Howe-Waffle, who was one of the first female physicians in the entire county till she died in 1924. Built by Stoughton and George in 1889, the Late Victorian Queen Anne style house now operates as Dr. Willella Howe-Waffle House and Medical Museum by the Santa Ana Historical Preservation Society in honor of the original owner. It open for tours on the first Saturday of every other month, starting from February.
Delighted customers discover their hidden talent for painting in a cozy, friendly non-judgemental environment where they can sip their favorite vintage and let their brush speak. Inspired Art Wine is a studio that combines a relaxing glass of wine or beer with a spot of creative art, away from the demands of everyday life for an evening with friends. Corporate team building events or private parties with friends can be organized at the venue, complete with expert art instructors, easels, aprons, brushes and paints, along with beverages.