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Top Rated Attractions in Orange County

Search Radius (Miles)
Ocean Institute

The Ocean Institute is located in beautiful Dana Point Harbor and offers ocean science and maritime history programs perfect for kids and adults alike. See hundreds of marine animals in aquariums, watch animal feedings, experience ocean-themed exhibits, and have fun with hands-on activities. For an extra charge, take a tall ship or a whale watching cruise. The Dana Point Marine Protected Area is steps away from the Institute.

Irvine Park Railroad

Irvine Park Railroad is located in beautiful Irvine Regional Park. The one-third-scale train takes visitors on a scenic, 12-minute ride through the 495-acre (200-hectare) park. Other park attractions include pony rides, the Orange County Zoo, walking trails, horseback riding, snack bars, and more. You can rent paddle boats, bikes, and horseshoe and volleyball sets. Annual Irvine Park Railroad events include the Pumpkin Patch, Christmas Train, Easter Eggstravaganza, Santa’s Village, and Anniversary Celebration. School field trips are available. You can also reserve space for private parties.

Discovery Cube Orange County

Imaginations turn, twist and fly through 120 exciting hands-on exhibits at Discovery Cube Orange County. The park, which was formerly called the Discovery Science Center, is located in Santa Ana and has been inspiring kids of all ages for years. Experience science in the museum's themed areas, which include Quake Zone, Techno Arts, Discovery Stadium, Perception, Dynamic Earth, Air & Space, Kids Station and Dino Quest. Kids and adults alike are given a chance to lie on a bed of needles, run with dinosaurs, and dive to the depths of the ocean, all in one building! The establishment also hosts educational programs throughout the year.

Pretend City Children's Museum

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!

Corona del Mar State Beach

For those who can make only one stop in Corona del Mar, make it the Corona del Mar State Beach. This area alone can make everyone fall in love with CdM, a laid-back multi-million-dollar neighborhood accented by the Pacific, with streets lined by palm trees and flower beds. On the bluff, three signs mark beach access: Lookout Point, Main Beach, and Inspiration Point. Each point has a different view, but all share Catalina Island in the background, with Newport Bay and Balboa Island in the foreground. A few steps towards the south end of Ocean Boulevard is a secluded cove near the Robert E. Badham Marine Life Refuge, and some of the most extravagant mansions follow.

Balboa Village

The heart of the Balboa Peninsula, the Balboa Village is one of the most visited attractions of Newport Beach. A perfect place for a day out with family and friends, the village has a plethora of activities on offer. It’s lined with some of the best restaurants in the city, to get you fueled up for the day. There are attractions like the Fun Zone for children, while adults can indulge in one of the many boat tours that are organized here. The village also hosts several events every year.

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