Archives For Free Activities

Muth Interpretive Center

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A visit to the Muth Interpretive Center is a must for all Orange County families. This 10,000-square-foot educational facility is dedicated to the preservation of the Upper Newport Bay, the largest of only a few remaining natural estuaries in Southern California. This wonderful place has tons of free activities that will entertain you and your kids for several hours. 

Free Activities at the Muth Interpretive Center:

  • Lots of exhibits and interactive displays that teach you about the wildlife of the Upper Newport bay.
  • Watch the award-winning “Saltmarsh Seasons” in the Ray and Elsa Watson Theater.
  • Check out live reptile and amphibian displays.
  • Have fun with animal puppets, puzzles, books and crafts.
  • Take a walk or a bike ride around the bay and look for birds, fish and animals that hang out in the area. Do you know that Upper Newport Bay is an important rest stop for birds migrating from Canada and Alaska? Up to 30,000 birds can be seen here on any one day during the winter months.

Other Kids’s Activities at the Muth Interpretive Center:

  • On Friday morning from 10:30-11:30 they have super fun parent & child classes which may include arts and crafts, storytelling, live animal presentation, hands-on activities and a nature walk. The class is $5 per child and it is well worth it. Reservations are preferred so that they can make sure they have enough craft material for everyone. For ages 2-5. To register call (949) 923 2269 or email carissa.macias@newportbay.org.

Other Activities close by:

  • Free: explore the Back Bay Science Center, tour the teaching lab and aquarium tanks, visit the touch pool touch tank, and do some bird watching. Every Sunday from 10am-2pm. Click here for more info.
  • Free: see the diverse plants, birds and other wildlife of six distinct habitats as you take a self-guided tour on a ½ mile nature trail starting at the Big Canyon parking lot. Click here for more info. 
  • For a fee: on Saturdays and Sundays from 10am to 12pm you can join an experienced naturalist for a guided kayak tour of the back bay. $25/person, ages 8 and up. Click here for more info. 
  • For a fee: you can also rent a kayak any day of the week for $15/hour ($20/hour for a two person kayak). Ages 8 and up. Click here for more info.

Address:

2301 University Avenue, Newport Beach, 92660

Opening Hours:

Tuesday – Sunday: 10am – 4pm.
Free admission, free parking.

Listing On PlanDayOut:

Click here to get all the information about the Muth Interpretive Center. If you scroll at the bottom of the page you will see a list of events at this location.

Free Train Rides in Orange County

Maruska —  September 11, 2017

Free Train Rides in Orange CountyOn the 3rd Saturday and Sunday of each month take the kids to the Fairview Park in Costa Mesa to enjoy free model train rides from 10am until 3:30pm. The ride lasts around 12 minutes and covers two loops of the park. This has become one of my favorite outings with my kids. All aboard!

Address:

2323 Placentia Avenue, Costa Mesa, CA, 92626

When:

Every 3rd Saturday and Sunday of each month, from 10am until 3:30pm

Cost:

$0.00. Parking is also free.

More Info:

Click here for more info.

Pioneer Road ParkIf you are looking for a free place to cool down during the hot summer months, you might want to check out the western-themed Pioneer Road Park. It has a great water play area, two playground structures, swings, 3 chuck wagons, a large covered picnic area, and lots of greenery all around it.

The water area is a lot of fun with lots of spray features that come alive at different times such as pop-up fountains and water cannons.

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Hours:

The water play area is open daily from Memorial Day to Labor day from 10am until 4pm.

Address:

Pioneer Road Park, 10250 Pioneer Road, Tustin, CA, 92782

Tips:

  1. If you want to escape the sun, there is a sitting wall around the water area that is mostly in the shade so parents can sit there while watching their kids have fun.
  2. When the water activities turn off you need to press a button to turn everything back on. So don’t think the splash pad is broken. Just look for the magic button.
  3. The parking lot is small, so I don’t even bother checking if I can find a spot; instead I park at the Salvation Army parking lot which is above and behind the park (if you are coming from Jamboree Rd, take Pioneer Road and then make an immediate left). There you can park next to the steps that take you down to the park.

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Activities close by:

The Pioneer Road Park is very close the Irvine Regional Park. So you might make it a full day of fun and visit both. FYI, at the Irvine Regional Park, you can avoid paying for parking on Tuesdays if you are going to the Farmer’s market which is from 9am to 1pm.