Yep, it blows minds but there is a lot more to do in and around Anaheim than simply visiting the happiest place on Earth, aka Disneyland Resort California. Anaheim is a fun filled destination with plenty for the whole family to enjoy, making a few days in Anaheim a great addition to any Disneyland holiday.
We sent two of our Flight Centre travel experts, Josh and Chloe over to Anaheim to get their low down on places like Knott’s Berry Farm and Disneyland, the best Anaheim hotels to stay in and the best places to eat, drink and play. Here are their tips:
What’s the best way to get to Anaheim, and get around?
Anaheim is about a 30 minute drive from LA, so is easily accessed by grabbing a hire car at LAX, or organising a lift with a transfer company like Karmel Shuttles. Once you're there, it’s an easy place to drive around with a hire car, or you can use the CTR City Anaheim app for free rides around popular locations. Download it before you arrive.
If you’re planning a California road trip, Anaheim is a great stop. After a few nights there, you can continue onto nearby cities like Palm Springs, San Diego and of course, LA, in just a few hours.
Hotels in Anaheim - where to stay?
There are plenty of great hotels in Anaheim, some of our favourites are:
- Great Wolf Lodge - a fantastic family option for the indoor water park, shows and kids activities which are all included in the hotel rate.
- The Howard Johnson Anaheim is perfect for its location which is within walking distance of Disneyland.
- For the full Disney experience, stay at one of the three Disneyland Resort hotels.
Things to do in Anaheim
Disneyland Resort California
The resort is made up of two theme parks; Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure Park. We recommend choosing a minimum 3-Day ticket, which is the best way to make the most of over 100 attractions, shows, parades and more.
If you’re wanting to visit Disneyland Resort California, check out our travel guide here. We’ve pulled together Flight Centre travel experts Josh and Chloe’s top tips and recommendations on visiting the resort, their favourite rides, attractions and shows, where to eat, the ticket options, where to stay and what to do once you're there.
Planning a trip? Check out our Disneyland deals here
Knott’s Berry Farm
This world-renowned theme is the place to go for its famous fried chicken dinners, attractions and entertainment for all ages. The theme park has an old western themed ghost town, roller coasters, stage shows, interactive experiences and delicious food. It’s easy to get there by driving, or you can use a car transfer service.
If you’re a sports fan, Anaheim has two major teams you can see in action. The Honda Centre is the home ground of the Anaheim Ducks, the city’s professional ice hockey team and the Los Angeles Angels, Anaheim’s major league baseball team, based at the Angel Stadium.
If you’re looking for some retail therapy, South Coast Plaza is a shopping paradise. It’s roughly a 20-minute drive from Anaheim and boasts over 250 premium stores and restaurants. It’s one of the best shopping centres on the West Coast.
If bargain hunting is more your jam, head to The Citadel Outlets just off the Santa Ana Freeway. There are over 130 designer and brand name stores, a huge range of dining options and it even has the Citadel luxury lounge. Think of it like an airline lounge, but for shoppers, which you can use to really make a day of it.
For an easy shopping experience, our hot tip is Shop ‘til you Drop off an amazing service run by Karmel Shuttles which includes transfers to Citadel on your way in or out of LAX.
The services provides luggage storage while you shop plus access to the Citadel luxury lounge meaning you can arrive at the airport, your hotel or Disneyland Resort, feeling fresh.
We all know that California has made its name on its iconic sun, sand and surf. For some a few of the best, check out Long Beach, Newport Beach or, Huntington Beach which is about a half-hour drive from downtown Anaheim, depending on traffic. (Tip: always check maps before you road trip around California, traffic can be unpredictable!)
Where to eat in Anaheim?
All these activities are bound to make you hungry, so we took it upon ourselves to do a little taste testing while we were there - you’re welcome.
There are loads of great dining options in Downtown Disney, which is open to the public regardless of whether or not you have a ticket into the park - basically admission is free.
Some of our favourite places to eat both in Downtown Disney and Anaheim are:
- Black Tap, Downtown Disney: You can snap an Insta-worthy photo of an elaborate candy-topped crazy shake.
- Splitsville Luxury Lanes, Downtown Disney: has a bowling center, pool tables, TVs, bars and a restaurant (which does great sushi).
- House of Blues, GardenWalk: does great food and live music. It has what they call the ‘Foundation Room’ - a favourite for delicious tapas and cocktails, but our pick is their famous Gospel Brunch on Sundays.
- Golden Road Brewing: is a local spot for craft beers
- FIFTH rooftop bar: is the place to be for a sunset cocktail.
For help booking your trip to Anaheim, contact one of out Flight Centre agents, or check out this page for more California information.