10 Best Day Trips From Anaheim, California - Updated 2021

day trips from anaheim

Anaheim is an amazing city located in Orange County. One of the reasons why this place is a very common destination is because it is home to one of California’s largest Disneyland theme parks. Of course, there’s more to this place than just fun rides and your favorite Disney characters. In fact, if you’re coming from Anaheim, you’ll find that there are numerous tourist day trip destinations for most families in the surrounding areas. Thus, people coming from this place often opt for a good ol’ road trip. If you’re skeptical, continue reading as we’ll show you some of the best day trips from Anaheim, California.

1. San Diego, CA (from USD 109.0)

A road trip to San Diego from Anaheim, California may just be the thing to make your summer vacation a little more interesting. If by chance you are visiting San Diego, be sure to pack heavy. The best part about this tour is that it’s very convenient. You are provided with a pick-up and drop-off service to San Diego from Orange County. While here, be sure to admire the majestic beauty of the beaches of La Jolla, Downtown San Diego, Seaport Village, and of course, the iconic Coronado Island.

The San Diego Tour from South Orange County

Duration: 8 to 10 hours

8 reviews

2. Los Angeles, CA (from USD 94.0)

If you want to experience what Los Angeles, California has to offer, then planning a road trip to this iconic destination is your best bet. Los Angeles is known as the home of Hollywood stars and those who dream to be on the big screen. Take a stroll along the streets of Hollywood and explore various locations and sites, such as the Walk of Fame, Griffith Observatory, Memorial Coliseum, and the famous Hollywood sign. On this tour, there will never be a dull moment. In fact, just by simply walking along the streets of Los Angeles, California, you are bound to run into Hollywood celebrities or a number of TV stations doing “On the Street” interviews. Here, your chances of seeing a movie star are particularly high - this makes LA already worth the trip!

The Best of LA Tour from Anaheim or LA: Hollywood, Beverly Hills and Beaches

Duration: 10 hours

223 reviews

3. Catalina Island, CA (from USD 154.0)

You may have already heard of the place known as Catalina Island. In fact, it is possible you have heard your colleagues and friends talk about how breathtaking this place is. Well, if you are in a bit of a time crunch, you can explore Catalina Island in just one day by reserving your slot for this day cruise. Here, you can enjoy the scenic views of the coast of Southern California. There will also be a ferry ride along the iconic Gulf of Santa Catalina. If you’re feeling a bit adventurous, you can even try their optional zipline tour, which will truly take your breath away.

Catalina Island from Anaheim with Upgrades

Duration: 12 hours

19 reviews

4. Newport Beach, Huntington Beach, Laguna Beach (from USD 59.0)

If you are coming from Anaheim, California, then what better way to experience some road trip fun than to explore the southern part of California. A full-day tour around Orange County may just be the thing you need to unwind from your busy life. There are a lot of tourist attractions here that are family-friendly–some of which would include Heisler Park, Crystal Cove State Park, and Balboa Fun Zone among others.

Small-Group Best Beaches in Orange County Day Tour

Duration: 9 hours

16 reviews

5. Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico

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Source: Photo by Flickr user Dane used under CC BY 2.0

Tijuana, Mexico is situated just north of the Baja California Peninsula. If you’re having trouble imagining where Tijuana is on the map, it’s simply north of the United States border. If by chance, you want to book a day trip to this gorgeous and aesthetically pleasing city, then be sure to expect a lot of beer- and wine-tasting activities. Also, don’t forget to visit Tijuana Cultural Center and admire its architectural design. Here are a few reminders to ensure that your trip is hassle-free: US dollars are accepted in Tijuana. Try brushing up on your Spanish as it’ll be helpful when you’re here. Lastly, don’t forget to pack your passport as well as other identification cards.

6. Palm Springs, CA

Palm Springs - Indian Canyons - Trail (12.2010) - panoramio - Martin Haeusler
Source: Photo by user Martin Haeusler used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Enjoy a lot of outdoor activities in Palm Springs, CA. Anyone who is planning to visit Palm Springs must ensure that they’re physically fit for all of the activities lined up. First and foremost, we have the must-see Palm Springs Indian Canyons. You can either ride a bike or opt for a quick hike. There are also various locations in Palm Springs where you can zipline. If you want to explore Joshua Tree National Park, then it’s best to book a jeep tour. We’ll talk more about this in the succeeding point.

7. Joshua Tree National Park, CA

Scene from Joshua Tree National Park
Source: Photo by Flickr user Don DeBold used under CC BY 2.0

From the previous point, the amazing Joshua Tree National Park is also located in Palm Springs, CA, which makes the idea of booking for a jeep tour a convenient and fun way to end your day. Joshua Tree National Park boasts one of the most unique and uncanny landscapes in all of the United States of America. In one day, you can fit in two hikes. You can either learn about the desert landscapes within the surrounding area or you can take a gentler trail and simply observe the park’s wildlife.

8. Santa Ana, CA

Old Orange County Courthouse, Santa Ana, California
Source: Photo by Flickr user Ken Lund used under CC BY-SA 2.0

Santa Ana City is located in the state of California and it is a popular spot for day trips coming from Anaheim. This is a great place for when you’d like to have a relaxing trip together with your family or friends. You can visit Bowers Museum if you’d like to get to know more about the history of the city. Moreover, if you are an adrenaline junkie, you can enjoy some of the rides at Adventure City. You can also visit Discovery Cube Orange County where you can experience various interactive exhibits.

9. Santa Monica

Santa Monica Pier
Source: Photo by Flickr user Thank You (21 Mil... used under CC BY 2.0

Santa Monica is a city located on the coast of Los Angeles, California. When you’re here, you can visit Santa Monica State Beach, which offers a scenic view of the Pacific Ocean. You can also take your family or friends to Pacific Park, which offers a seaside view complete with so many amazing rides and booths. This city is a great place for families to go around and enjoy doing different activities under the sun.

10. Malibu

Malibu Beach
Source: Photo by Flickr user Thank You (21 Mil... used under CC BY 2.0

Widely popular amongst the rich, the city of Malibu in California is well-known for its beaches and numerous homes owned by famous celebrities. The city signs describe the city as “21 miles of scenic beauty”. This place is a great spot for those who enjoy visiting beautiful beaches, especially the beautiful sands of Zuma Beach and Malibu Lagoon State Beach, which are famous spots for surfers due to its waves.

Amazing road trips from Anaheim, California

While Anaheim, California is amazing in itself, its neighboring cities and towns are just as intriguing. If you’re feeling a little bit adventurous, then we hope that browsing through this list has given you an idea of where you want to travel to next. With that in mind, good luck and enjoy!

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.

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Joyce Gonzales has always had the case of wanderlust. She was a former financial analyst who took a leap of faith and started writing about her travels. She is intrigued by the existence of...Read more

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