When most people think of Anaheim, there is one attraction that pops into mind and that is Disneyland. Look, we love Disneyland as much as anyone (grab discounted tickets here), however, the truth is Anaheim has SO MUCH MORE to offer traveling families coming in from both near and far. We spend a lot of time around Anaheim as a family and I am so excited to share the incredible things to do in Anaheim that we have uncovered!
Top 30 Amazing Things To Do in Anaheim beyond Disneyland
First things first, you will need to learn how to get around! I love that Anaheim, unlike a lot of Southern California, has an amazing public transit system. If you don’t have a car, just hop on the Anaheim Rapid Transit (ART). With just a couple of bucks, you can be anywhere. Check out and pre-purchase discounted ART passes here!
Global Munchkin’s Anaheim Favorites
1: Lessons at Vans Skatepark- Our Kiddos Favorite Thing To Do in Anaheim!
One of our kids’ favorite things to do in Anaheim is the Vans Skatepark. This massive 20,000+ square foot skatepark is a skater’s paradise. My kids were complete beginners, but thanks to their incredible instructor Devon they had a blast! You can book private lessons on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday with a Vans certified skate instructor for $50 an hour.
My kids weren’t quite ready for the craziness but they did enjoy sliding down it on their bums!
2: SwingIt Trapeze Lessons
You have to experience SwingIt Trapeze! I was completely shocked that our whole family was able to fly. The staff is incredible and will guide you step by step so that you feel completely comfortable. Check out the current class schedule here!
Trapeze wasn’t easy but the instructors are so skilled at helping you learn! Check out my tricks below:
Ella also enjoyed the sideshow tricks while she was waiting for her turn.
3 & 4: Catch an Angels Baseball Game or a Ducks Hockey Game
Anaheim is home to the Angels and luckily the Angels Stadium is a fantastic place for families. Sundays are family days so there are extra games and fun for the kiddos with face painting and games located in the Gate 5 Courtyard.
You can also head across the street to the Honda Center and see the Anaheim Ducks. If hockey isn’t your thing, the Honda Center also holds concerts throughout the year!
*AVOID PARKING HEADACHES: You can hop on the rail, bus, or grab an Uber from the ARTIC Transportation Center.
5: Find Instagram-Worthy Food at the Anaheim Packing House
The Anaheim Packing House was once the Sunkist Packing House. It was built in 1919, but got a whole new look a few years ago and is now a foodie hall full of amazing artisan eateries. There is always something new to discover and it is oh so tasty. Just make sure you arrive hungry!
I recommend trying the K2 Cro-Nut from Pandor. Just be sure you have someone to share it with.
A Rainbow Cloud from Mini Monster is also one of our favorites. It’s a Thai Tea with boba topped with freshly spun cotton candy and fruity pebbles. You can keep sustainability in mind and buy the reusable jar, too!
You will also find the Instagram sensation known as Pop Bar at the Packing House. They serve gelato on a stick dipped in your favorite chocolate and rolled in the topping of your choice.
Take a look at all the natural light flowing in, the succulent plants, and swings… it’s so beautiful!!!
If you are in the mood for a meal I suggest checking out the artisan tacos at Urbana…
or a fresh plate of Tikka Masala from Adya. The warm fresh naan is to die for!
*BONUS TIP: More Instagram-worthy photos can be taken at the GardenWalk located on Harbor Blvd. You will enjoy delicious places like The Cheesecake Factory and crazy desserts from Snowopolis!
6: Visit the Flightdeck for a Totally Unique Thing To Do in Anaheim
Flightdeck is amazing! You get to take a flight course, jump in a suit like Maverick & Goose and dog flight inside simulator pods in front of a giant screen. Not to mention, the Flightdeck in Anaheim is the ONLY place in the world you can do this!!! Check Current Prices Here.
My boys LOVED competing against each other. My middle son, Owen, who loves video games said this was his favorite activity all summer long. Pretty high praise if you ask me!
7: Check Out Center Street – One of the Coolest Things To Do in Anaheim!
Center St. Promenade brings together all the best of Anaheim. This is where you will find the farmer’s market, seasonal art shows, and street fairs. Make sure you save room for Pour Vida. Their tacos and fresh-pressed juices are divine.
If you are over at the Packing House you can hop on “Polly the Trolley“ noon to 9 PM Friday-Sunday. It’s a free ride from the Packing House to Center St. Promenade and back. It leaves every 15 minutes!
8: Take the Family to Medieval Times
You can’t miss the long-time family favorite, Medieval Times! I will admit, we had not been to Medieval Times in ages so I was shocked by how much the kids still loved the show and dinner.
The place was PACKED! The kids loved eating without silverware. I ordered their vegetarian meal, which was also delicious.
The knights are fun to watch, but what I really love is watching all of the magnificent horses. They brought out some who were literally dancing to the music. It was so beautiful to see. Grab discounted tickets here!
9: Grab Lunch at Dave & Buster’s & Hang Out at the Arcade
Of course… it’s not the food the kids cared about but the MASSIVE arcade. Our kids played for a good hour and a half before we could pry them off the machines. They had a blast!!
And, once they were done they got to go to the most incredible ticket redemption store I had ever seen. Ella could hardly believe she had enough tickets to buy the adorable stuffed raccoon below!
10: The Anaheim Brewery- A Stop Moms & Dads will LOVE
I know breweries are not really for the kids, but this one was too good not to mention. Anaheim Brewery is a revived prohibition brewery. Even though this stop is for the grown-ups, you can sandwich it with fun activities for the kids.
All beer is made right there on site. The founders Barbara and Greg are so passionate about brewing beer and it shows! The beers are light, airy and absolutely delicious.
11: Find Hands-On Fun at the Discovery Cube
Last but certainly not least, The Discovery Cube in Orange County is another fantastic stop! They have a ton of hands-on educational activities that will entertain your little ones for a full afternoon.
My bigger kids love checking out the Science of Hockey area and the Inspector Training course. If you live in SoCal their family annual pass is a really affordable way to keep the fun going all year long.
12: Round 1 Bowling & Amusement
The newest addition to Anaheim Attractions is Round 1 Bowling and Amusement. Technically it is in the neighboring city of Santa Ana, but it’s just a couple miles away. You can check it out here!
Other Great Stops in Anaheim to Check Out
13: Jump around at the Sky Zone Indoor Trampoline Park
14: See a Show at the House of Blues
15: Visit the Hass Avocado Mother Tree in La Habra
16: Shop at Anaheim GardenWalk
17: Listen to Music at The City National Grove of Anaheim
18: Find Some Small Thrills at Adventure City
19: Eat Famous Chicken and Waffles at Roscoes
20: Explore Ralph B. Clark Regional Park
21: Spend Some Time in Yorba Regional Park
22: Visit Thursday Downtown Anaheim Certified Farmers Market
23: Walk Around and Dine in Downtown Disney
24: Skate at Anaheim ICE
25: Hit Another Amusement Park Knott’s Berry Farm in nearby Buena Vista
26: & Knott’s Soak City (buy discount tickets here!)
27: See Some Animals at the Santa Ana Zoo
28: Head to a convention at the Anaheim Convention Center
29: Hike at the Oak Canyon Nature Center
30: Grab a Drink at Unsung Brewing Company
Family-Friendly Accommodations in Anaheim
When exploring Anaheim & Disneyland, there are many hotel options. Below are two of our favorite hotels that are super family-friendly off of Disney property.
Courtyard Anaheim Theme Park Entrance Hotel
The Courtyard Anaheim Theme Park Entrance Hotel is a newer hotel that features an on-site water park called Surfside, a beautiful fitness center, and rooms designed with families in mind. You can even see fireworks from the pool area and some of the rooms.
We stayed in a family suite that had two queen beds + a bunk bed. Even with all 6 of us we never felt squished. Check Prices Here!
photo provided by Courtyard Anaheim
My favorite feature was the dual showers, it made our usual hectic mornings pretty peaceful!
photo provided by Courtyard Anaheim
photo provided by Courtyard Anaheim
Great Wolf Lodge
Another great place to check out is the Great Wolf Lodge. It is so family-friendly and located about 3 miles away from Disneyland. You can check out my Great Wolf Lodge Southern California review here! There’s a water park inside the hotel, too. Don’t miss out check current prices here!
Additional Resources for Planning the Perfect Trip:
- Need help planning and booking your magical Disneyland vacation? Contact our friends at Tink’s Magical Vacations. Their services FREE, but they will save you both time and money.
- Looking to head over to Buena Park? Check out my 25 things to do in Buena Park! [9 are free]
- Going to Disneyland? How to Buy Discount Disneyland Tickets – 7 Easy Ways
Have you explored Anaheim beyond the Disney Parks? We would love to hear your Anaheim tips below!
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*a special thanks to Visit Anaheim for arranging our stay for purpose of our reviews as well as Vans Skatepark, The Outlets at Orange, Flightdeck, Medieval Times, Courtyard Anaheim Theme Park Entrance, SwingIt Trapeze and the Discovery Cube for hosting the munchkins on our recent visit. All thoughts and opinions, as always, are 100% my own.