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Fun things to do in Orange County

Sometimes Jessica and I have a hard time coming up with things to do in Orange County, so we put together this handy list. It's divided up into things that you can do on the weekend, things that you can do any time and seasonal events.

I will add to this list as I get new ideas. If you have any suggestions, please email me.

Start Here

These community event calendars are always up to date:

Orange County Register events site - OC Weekly events calendar

Things to do on the weekends

Whale Watching

Whale WatchingNewport Landing Whale Watching offers year round whale watching cruises daily from Newport Beach. Their cruises are 2 1/2 hours and the price is hard to believe. My friends went out in early July and saw 2 blue whales...their tails were huge! They also saw tons of beautiful dolphins. Great scenery, amazing time on the water, and it only costs $20.


There are a lot of great parks in Orange County. Here are our favorites:

Car Shows

I like looking at old, tricked out cars. Sometimes I can drag Jessica along. It's a good way to spend the day. Car shows usually appear in the Orange County Register Events Calendar. Some of them are weekly.

Bike Riding

Bike riding can be fun, but we have hard time committing to it. I think the secret is to just get up and go.

The Beach

There are a bunch of great beaches in Orange County. Although they are usually best in the summer, sometimes it's fun to walk around even in the cold.

Dog Beach

Take your dog to the beach and let him sniff other dogs. If you don't have a dog, take some beef jerky and see how much trouble you can cause.

Museums and Art

We're not really "art people", but a little while ago we went down to the Santa Ana Arts District and saw some really weird stuff. That was definitely fun.

Dollar Movie Theaters

Matinee's for $1.50 and evenings for $2.00. Sounds good to me.


We've been going to the Imperial Ballroom in downtown Fullerton for group dance lessons. It's pretty fun, even though I suck.


Local colleges put on a lot of cheap plays. Unfortunately they do musicals as well. Avoid musicals at all costs.

Garage Sales

Garage sales are fun on a Friday or Saturday morning. Get up early and drive around looking at people's old crap. Sometimes you find some really cool stuff for 25 cents. Mostly just furniture from the 80's though.

High School / College Sports

Go see a college football game, or go watch your old high school's team play baseball. Sounds fun, in theory. I will have to try this one out.


Not everybody likes fishing, but they should. Fakelake or salt water... your pick. All of these places will rent equipment if you don't own a fishing pole.

Christmas Boat Parade 

It's a lot of fun to watch all of these amazing boats decorated for Christmas, cruising through the harbor.

Cruise the Malls

You're in "The OC", the world capital of Conspicuous Consumption. Go to the local mall and watch it in action. Leave your wallet at home.


Shooting is a healthy sport that can be enjoyed by anyone. If you can't get out to the desert, try one of the local ranges. If you don't have any guns, these places will be happy to rent one to you and show you how to use it.

Go out to Eat

OK, this one is obvious, but do yourself a favor and get an Entertainment Book. Here are some of our favorite restaurants where you get buy-one-get-one-free with the book.

Swap Meet

Just like a garage sale, except you pay $2 to get in. (Hint: when we were punk kids, we used to jump the fence in the back)

Things to do any day of the Week

Drive in Movies

Drive-In Theaters are a cheap way to see a movie. Just make sure to stay in your car and lock the doors, because they're usually in the ghetto. Don't forget to hit up 7-11 on the way in.


It sounds boring, but the local library holds a vast wealth of knowledge that you can use to broaden your mind and gain exposure to foreign cultures.

I go there because they have lots of magazines.

Live Music

Local coffee shops have live music all the time. You usually get to see alot of final performances, because most of the bands won't be around in six months.


Cooking is fun because you don't have to leave the house to do it, and anything that involves eating is good.

Walk through neighborhoods

Take a walk through some neighborhoods around where you live. Point out people's poor taste in lawn ornaments.

Disneyland Fireworks

Park at Downtown Disney, but walk towards the big parking structure. Head up the tallest escalator and wait for the fireworks. It's a pretty good show, and if you don't stay too long, it's free. Check the calendar for times.



The Orange County Fair

Deep fried Oreos, cow poop and rednecks. Enough said.

Christmas Boat Parade

Finally, you get to use your yacht for the real reason that you bought it... so other people can stare at you.

Hobby Shows

Now this is what it's all about.


Ah yes, 10,000 nine-o-niners gather in the parking lot at Anaheim Stadium for an afternoon of drinking, mopeding and BBQ, and then proceed into the stadium for four hours of dirt bike action. Good times.