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Shopping in Orange County
Courtesy of Visit California

3 Distinctive Orange County Shopping Experiences

3 Distinctive Orange County Shopping Experiences
Retail therapy is a time-honoured tradition in the O.C., and these three destinations deserve a visit

Lido Marina Village

A charming collection of shops on the water, Lido Marina Village would seem of another time, were it not for its completely modern mix of design boutiques and eateries. Built in the 1970s, the outdoor shopping centre was revitalised in 2017, attracting a prestigious lineup of Southern California brands—Jenni Kayne’s breezy-chic clothing, the bold leather goods of Clare Vivier, and Broken English’s evocative jewelry—along with Le Labo fragrance apothecary, home goods shop Serena & Lily, and even destination restaurant Nobu. Wooden boardwalks are strung with bistro lights, hand-painted signs direct patrons from shop to shop, and a relaxed savoir faire pervades the village. It’s not all shopping either: Coffee at Zinque, Curl Fitness’s yoga classes, and blowouts at TReSs Apothecary + Salon make it a locals’ hangout too. It’s the kind of place people linger, especially on Thursdays, Saturdays, and Sundays, when a local musician plays on the main deck. Even more fun: Arrive by boat, into one of the 47 marina slips.

A'maree's

A game-changer for Newport Beach when it opened in 1976, this boutique is still Orange County’s arbiter of style. Owned by a trio of sisters—their pioneering mother launched the store to give women a place to buy simple yet elegant designer pieces—the boutique is usually the first to stock labels that are winning acclaim in Europe, but haven’t yet won notice in the United States. Buying trips in Milan, Paris, New York, and occasionally L.A. beget an eclectic array of clothes and accessories that are at once glamorous and accessible. The owners cultivate relationships with their designers—including Peter Cohen, Denis Colomb, Daniela Gregis, The Row, and Sofie D’Hoore—and also host special meet-the-designer events for customers. There’s a homey familiarity every time a patron steps into the spacious shop, with high arching windows revealing yachts outside and glass portholes looking down to the Pacific. Locals’ tip: For a one-on-one styling session, book a private appointment with the sisters on a Sunday.

Anaheim Packing District

Starting in 2014, this collection of historic buildings was reinvented as a gastronomic hub—helping to revitalise the city’s downtown in the process. An early 20th-century citrus packing warehouse became the Anaheim Packing House, a virtual United Nations of food: Walking through the 3901-square-metre hall, you’ll find citrusy ceviche at Urbana, fried chicken sandwiches at Sweetbird, garden-fresh hot pot at Rolling Boil, organic curry at ADYA, and matcha shaved snow at I Am. Craft beer—quickly becoming a signature of Southern California—is in no short supply, thanks to bars like Anaheim Brewery, housed inside a 1925 mission revival building. A circa 1917 marmalade factory became the MAKE Building, where you can linger over a flight of California reds at Pali Wine Co. or a plate of pulled pork at Jav’s Barbecue. The compact district is distinctly Californian, from the succulents and air plants inside to the palm trees and olive groves of Farmers Park outside—a grassy knoll where, at any given time, you might happen upon a free yoga class, a gardening demo, or a live acoustic band playing under the sun.

In Partnership with Afar

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Photo by Scott Mansfield

Southern California

Discover Orange County

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November
Average (°C)
Sept - Nov
31°
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Dec - Feb
15°
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Mar - May
26°
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June - Aug
35°
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Whether it’s manicured beach towns or celebrated theme parks, all framed by oceanfront towns and luxury yachts, “The OC” stands out as one of the state’s most iconic destinations. The always-amazing Disneyland Resort, roughly a 1-hour drive south of L.A. and 2 hours north of San Diego, continues to be one of the best-loved theme parks in the world, while Knott’s Berry Farms and other OC attractions amp up the fun metre.

“Surfing is like golf. . . it keeps knocking you down. But when you stay with it and catch that wave. . . magic.”  --actor Dennis Quaid

Shop at spectacular South Coast Plaza in Costa Mesa, or get the surfer look in Huntington Beach, aka Surf City, USA. 

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Courtesy of Pelican Hill

The Resort at Pelican Hill

Indulge in Mediterranean elegance, world-class golf courses and five-star service at this Newport Beach resort

Tuscan elegance paired with panoramic ocean views is central to the eternal allure of...

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Mitch Diamond/Getty Images

Irvine

This centrally located Orange County city is the perfect home base for shopping, dining, and kid-friendly exploring

Irvine’s central location—72 kilometres from Los Angeles, 135 from San Diego, and 15 minutes from...

Orange County
Vacationland

4 Luxury Resorts in Orange County

Enjoy unparalleled views, world-class golf, fine dining, and much more at these high-end destinations

With long stretches of golden sand, prime surfing spots, excellent dining, and top golf courses, the good life doesn’t get much better than along...

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OC Stock Photos 2016

Irvine Spectrum Center

With a Ferris wheel and Spanish ambience, this shopping center expands the definition of “mall”

Southern California is known for its sunny, open-air shopping centers, but this outdoor mall in the heart of Orange County ups the ante with...

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Jon Bilous/Alamy

Orange County’s Best Beaches

Visit these four idyllic, sun-drenched stretches of sand in Southern California

With 62 kilometres of sandy coastline and a string of small, eclectic beach towns, Orange County delivers the quintessential Southern California...

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Carsten Erler/Getty Images

Spotlight: Anaheim

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Amazing attractions, shopping and dining in the one-of-a-kind Orange County town

With its laid-back atmosphere and unbeatable attractions, this vibrant city on the north-west side of Orange County has become a popular...

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Mission San Juan Capistrano, founded in 1776, was the first winery in California.
The magic of Disneyland, walking through the tunnel underneath the train station to Main Street, it just transports you to other places and other times.
John Lasseter
SPECIAL FEATURE
Unleash the kid within at California’s ultimate play lands

From Disneyland classics to beachfront carousels, the Golden State’s best-in-class theme parks deliver something for everyone. Take a tram ride to tour movie back lots at Universal Studios...

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Lucas Himovitz
Orange County is the cultural center of the surf world and Huntington Beach is like the heartbeat.
Corky Carroll (Orange County surf legend)
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South Coast Plaza by Harriot Manley

O.C. Shopping

Discover boutique brands and bargains

Shopping in The O.C. is almost as legendary as surfing. Start at expansive South Coast Plaza, California’s largest luxury shopping complex, with...

SPECIAL FEATURE
Where to release your inner fashionista

Shopping is an art form in California. Whether you're in search of the perfect cocktail dress or an authentic Mexican piñata, you'll find it here. Want to sample fresh produce? Try our farmers...

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South Coast Plaza
July/August

With a nickname like “Surf City, U.S.A.,” Huntington Beach is the obvious place for this 9-day, sun-and-wave extravaganza, the world’s largest surf event. Top pros including Kelly Slater and Rob...

Surfers competing in the Vans U.S. Open of Surfing
Vans U.S. Open of Surfing by William Fovall/Flickr
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SPECIAL FEATURE
Get into the coastal vibe

Maybe it’s the sun-streaked hair, the frequent smiles, the eyes always gazing west, looking to the horizon to see when the next set might roll in. It’s the unmistakable look and vibe of a...

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Courtesy of Great Wolf Lodge

Great Wolf Lodge

The hotel-meets-water-park chain brings its all-weather family fun to Orange County

At first glance, a completely indoor water-park hotel might seem unnecessary in sunny Orange County. Fans of the Great Wolf Lodge brand, however,...

SPECIAL FEATURE
Discover the awesome sports scene in the Golden State

With nearly twice as many professional teams as any other state, California is big league all the way. But the state’s sports scene goes far beyond football and baseball, with a diverse line-up of...

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Christina Lauren/Flickr
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Crystal Cove State Park by Harriot Manley

Crystal Cove State Park

Stroll a perfect beach with an intriguing past

In 1912, an early Laguna Beach artist described finding a rugged coastline “with cove after cove and headland after headland, golden cliffs and...

SPECIAL FEATURE
From Gold Rush history to 8th wonders of the world, visit these favorites

If there was ever a box of chocolates—and all of them delicious—it’s the rich collection of natural treasures, fascinating...

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Amy Meredith/Flickr
December

Rated by The New York Times as one of the country's top holiday happenings, this glittering event is a must see in The OC during the holidays. Local boat owners lavishly decorate their vessels,...

Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade
Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade by fortherock/Flickr
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Pelican Bay

Golf in Orange County

Tee up at top courses, with some ocean views

With ideal Southern California weather and some of the country’s most celebrated courses, Orange County justly earns the nickname “California Golf...

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Paul Hiffmeyer/Disneyland

Disneyland Resort for Younger Kids

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A little fairytale fun plus some silly spots for open play equals a whole lot of magic

Flying elephants, giant teacups…there’s no debating that after for more than 60 years, this magical world of make-believe is still the...

SPECIAL FEATURE
Check these amazing experiences off your bucket list

Kiss a beluga, see cool movie props, and learn about Walt’s secret hideaway on exclusive and behind-the-scenes tours at California’s theme parks and attractions. Here’s a roundup of worth-the-...

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Photo by Michael Saechang/Flickr
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Every year, the Orange County Great Park Balloon dons a smiling jack-o-lantern mask, marking the unofficial start of fall in Orange County.