Anaheim, California is best known as being home to the world-renowned Disneyland Resort. Book a stay at one of many cozy Anaheim vacation rentals to easily relax after spending the day at the amusement park. If you’d prefer to visit more attractions than just the theme park, check out some of the top things to do when visiting Anaheim.
1. Visit Disneyland
If you’re booking a vacation rental in Anaheim, there’s an excellent chance that you’re headed to Disneyland for at least part of your stay. It’s well worth a visit of at least a full day. Check out the apps that help you plan your day and minimize waiting in line. The key to a great visit is arriving when the park opens and hitting all the major rides right away so you can take time to view parades and relax later in the day.
2. Visit California Adventure
Don’t forget that Disneyland has a sister park: Disney’s California Adventure Park. Book dinner at Cathay Circle for a real treat (and remember, this park serves adult drinks), and stick around for the World of Color show around the giant lake at night. California Adventure has a laid-back vibe that’s different from Disneyland, with plenty of unique rides, including the ever-popular Soarin’ Over California.
3. Take in a Game at Angel Stadium
The Los Angeles Angels play at Angel Stadium in Anaheim, and if you’re visiting between summer and fall, you don’t want to miss the excitement generated here. Keep your eye on the halo at the top of the stadium’s sign to see it light up every time the home team scores.
4. Attend a Medieval Feast at Medieval Times
This dinner experience is a unique one, and not to be missed. While you dine on Renaissance-style fare, you and your family watch a truly spectacular horse show filled with real-life jousting and amazing displays of horsemanship. Enjoy cheering for your team, and have your kids try to lift the swords in the pre-show.
5. Go to a Hockey Game
The Anaheim Ducks play at the Honda Center right in the heart of Anaheim, and a hockey game is a great way to spend an evening if you’ve booked your vacation rental for any time from fall into spring. At other times of the year, look for concerts featuring top-name acts at the Honda Center or fun ice shows that your kids will love.
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6. Take the Little Ones to a Pint-Size Theme Park at Adventure City
Sometimes Disneyland can overwhelm younger kids, but Anaheim has a special place for them. Adventure City is a tiny theme park with scaled-down rides designed to appeal to preschoolers, who will enjoy the shorter lines and more relaxed place as they spend a happy afternoon in this safe attraction.
7. Attend a Concert at City National Grove
As a concert venue, City National Grove strikes a nice balance between an intimate coffeehouse and a giant stadium. Top musicians play in this venue, which seats a little over 1,500 people, so book tickets to see your favorite acts.
8. Attend a Con at the Anaheim Convention Center
While most convention centers host trade shows that are only of interest to people in a certain industry, the Anaheim Convention Center attracts visitors from all over the country to some of the biggest entertainment-themed conventions of the year. Check out WonderCon, which is a mini-version of San Diego’s famous ComicCon. Disney’s gigantic D23 Expo features panels, screenings, and merchandise for all things Disney, including Marvel and Star Wars.
9. Shop and Dine at Downtown Disney
You can get your Disney fix even on days when you don’t have tickets to the parks by visiting Downtown Disney, which sits just outside the entrance to Disneyland and California Adventure. A visit to the LEGO Store brings hours of building fun, while a restaurant like the Rainforest Cafe is almost a theme park in itself.
10. Explore the Disney Hotels
Sure, you’re enjoying getting to spread out at your spacious vacation rental, as well as staying within your budget by preparing some meals yourself. But that doesn’t mean you can’t stroll through the Disney hotels. Take the monorail from Disneyland to the Disneyland Hotel to check out its lagoon or enjoy a breakfast with Disney characters. From Disney’s California Adventure, you can stroll straight into the Grand Californian and relax in front of the walk-in fireplace in the beautiful Arts & Crafts-style lobby. Stop at the Storytellers Cafe for one of the most pleasant meals of your trip.
11. Get Outdoors at the Ralph B. Clark Regional Park
Too much time in a theme park can be overwhelming after a while, so get away from the hustle and bustle by visiting this large park right on the Anaheim border. If your vacation rental has bikes, bring them along to get a good long ride in, or hike along the tree-shaded trails running around the park. This park also features a lake where you can go fishing, and birders can keep their eyes out for more than 130 species.
12. Head to the Anaheim Farmers Market
If you love fresh food, you can’t do better than stopping in at the Downtown Anaheim Certified Farmers Market, which takes place every Thursday morning. Pick up fruits and vegetables that were picked just that morning at local farms, choosing from the best produce California has to offer. Most weeks, you’ll find live music to make your experience a little more fun.
13. Climb the Anaheim Hills
In the Anaheim Hills on the east side of the city, you’ll find the Oak Canyon Nature Center, a 58-acre respite with a 4-mile hiking loop that takes you through multiple canyons and along a running stream. Check out the interpretive center to see natural history exhibits and live animals.
14. Go Ice Skating
Because it’s home to a major league hockey team, Anaheim loves its ice skating, and Anaheim Ice is the place to find it. In fact, the Anaheim Ducks use this rink for practice, and maybe you’ll be lucky enough to catch a training session. At open sessions, you can get out on the ice yourself or take a lesson, or watch local hockey teams play.
15. Enjoy a Movie Under the Stars
At Pearson Park in Anaheim, you can treat yourself to some of your favorite family-friendly movies shown in the open air. Attendance is inexpensive, and there’s free admission for little kids. Pack in a few beach chairs and a picnic blanket to enjoy a true Southern California tradition.
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