i {heart} oc
travel like a local {& giveaway}

by @according2kelly on September 27, 2012


as you may (or may not) already know – i {heart} living in orange county (aka “the OC”}, in a big, pink, puffy heart kinda way.

while i may not have grown up here, after living here for over 11 years – it’s definitely home.

what’s not to love?


palm trees, hiking & mountain biking trails galore, beautiful sunsets, beaches, disneyland, amazing shopping, even better restaurants…

it’s practically heaven on earth!

so it doesn’t surprise me at all that people/ family/ friends travel from all across the world to spend time in “the OC.”

unfortunately these people rarely get to experience “my OC.” they are so busy hitting the main attractions – they miss out on some of the real awesome-ness that “the OC” has to offer.

so… i thought i’d put together a “local’s” approach to “the OC.” a list of my favorite must-do’s, must-see’s & occasional must-eat’s…

orange county theme parks

okay, okay. a trip to “the OC” just isn’t complete without a trip to a theme park (or two). luckily, we have several for you to choose from…

* adventure city
* disneyland
* disney’s california adventure
* knott’s berry farm

orange county museums

when it comes to museums, “the OC” has tons. & they are all amazing. but here is a quick list of my absolute favorites. (although here’s a list of all the orange county museums.)

* discovery science center: santa ana, ca
* pretend city: irvine, ca
* mission san juan capistrano: san juan capistrano, ca
* the muzeo: anaheim, ca
* tucker wildlife sanctuary: silverado, ca, FREE admission
* aquarium of the pacific: long beach, ca
* international surfing museum: huntington beach, ca
* lyon air museum: santa ana, ca
* marconi automotive museum: tustin, ca
* ocean institute: dana point, ca

a locals guide to orange county

while amusement parks & museums are great – there’s so much more to orange county. you just have to get out & explore…

* irvine park rail road: orange, ca
* orange county zoo: orange, ca
* santa ana zoo: santa ana, ca
* centennial farms: costa mesa, ca
* prehistoric pets: fountain valley, ca
* zoomars petting zoo: san juan capistrano, ca
* balboa fun zone & balboa island ferry: balboa, ca
* angel stadium tour: santa ana, ca
* oc great park & the great park balloon: irvine, ca, FREE
* orange county parks & playgrounds

orange county must-eats

no guide would be complete without a list of restaurants & hole-in-the-walls. & orange county has tons to choose from. here are just a few of my personal favs.

* bruxie: brea, old towne orange, & rancho santa margarita
* eva’s caribbean kitchen: laguna beach, ca
* joe’s italian ice: garden grove, ca
* mastro’s ocean club: newport coast, ca
* pedro’s tacos: san clemente
* shake shack: newport coast, ca
* slater’s 50/50: huntington beach & anaehim
* sno on the go: mission viejo, ca
* susie cakes: newport beach, ca
* oc din din a go go: food truck meetup, every tuesday night 5:30-9pm at irvine lanes

travel like a local tips & giveaway

want more orange county tips? want tips for visiting anywhere?  travel like a local anywhere you go with the residence inn thrival guide. it’s full tips & tricks regarding dining, local attractions, entertainment, shopping & more!

ready to put your new travel tips to work?

monday, october 1 (9pm EST) TravelingMom.com is having a “travel like a pro” twitter party. follow the hashtags #TMOM #RIThrival for a chance to win one of three 2-night stays at a residence inn property of your choice. for are the twitter party details, check out TravelingMom.com.

for another chance to win, enter the travel like a pro giveaway…  someone will win a 4-night stay in a one-bedroom suite at a residence inn property of their choice, plus a marriott platinum rewards membership. the marriott platinum membership features such benefits as platinum exclusive elite offers, a dedicated platinum reservation line, arrival gift for future stays, 50% bonus on points for stays and customized rewards.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

now the only question is… which residence inn are you going to stay in after you win?!

disclosure: this post is brought to you by residence inn & the residence inn thrival guide.



Can I enter your awesome giveaway if I'm not a FB member?

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