Mission Viejo, in Orange County in southern California and about 30 minutes south of Anaheim along Interstate 5, is a planned community founded in 1965. The community was built on the site of a former Spanish mission that was later used as a cattle ranch.
Today, both residents and visitors can take advantage of a wide variety of free activities throughout the city, which includes a number of outdoor sites that are ideal for enjoying the temperate southern California climate.
While Orange County in general is a very popular vacation destination, Mission Viejo is one of its cities that s often overlooked. But truth is, Mission Viejo is a hidden treasure waiting to be explored. Outside of the dozens of fabulous restaurants, here are a few cool things you can check out if you’re looking for something to do on a Saturday Afternoon.
Find the perfect gift or fulfill your personal style and taste. From designer options to affordable finds, this city makes the search easy. Experience shopping in Mission Viejo and find yourself coming back for more.
See the city in another light. As the sun sets and the parties start doing their magic, you’ll get to know Southern California better. Do it right by experiencing the best of the nightlife in Mission Viejo.
Travels can get better when you know the best routes to take. Tour like a pro by keeping up with the guides in Mission Viejo.
Oso Creek Trail
Do you feel the most alive when you are in the great outdoors? If so, this popular Mission Viejo trail is for you. This amazing trail started in 1997 as a way for the residents of Mission Viejo to come together and celebrate not only the Earth but the arts as well. This trail is 5.5 miles long and is filled with beautiful sites like the Butterfly Garden and the Wave Wall.
Oso Creek cuts through Mission Viejo as a tributary of the San Juan Creek, one of the largest waterways in Orange County. A community collaboration that started in 1997 led to the development of the Oso Creek Trail (cityofmissionviejo.org), which features 5 1/2 miles of hiking, walking and bicycling paths along the banks of the creek. It is designed as a walking garden, and the paths are lined with more than 130,000 different plants that have been cultivated by volunteers. A plant maze offers fun for kids, while the Peace Obelisk pays tribute to victims of the 9/11 attacks.
Mission Viejo Library
The Mission Viejo Library has grown from a small, county-run library to a large facility with almost 42,000 square feet of books, reading spaces and rooms for activities. Residents can also take advantage of the technology center, which provides access to 30 computers with filtered Internet access and Microsoft Office productivity tools. Children can use the multimedia learning station located in the children’s section. In addition, the children’s section features homework help and story times for younger children. The library walls host a rotating collection of paintings, photographs and other works from local artists.
Movies of Character
Parents looking for educational, enriching and uplifting movies to show their families can take them to see the monthly Movies of Character series (missionviejolife.org) at the Mission Viejo City Hall. Free screenings highlight films that show examples of outstanding moral character. Films previously shown include “Pinocchio,” “My Fair Lady” and “The Blind Side,” and screenwriter Robert Eisele was a guest during a screening of his film “The Great Debaters” in February 2011.
Parks and Recreation
The Mission Viejo Skateboard Facility is a free, 9,000-square-foot skate park at Beebe Park. The complex includes a concrete bowl, vert wall, boxes and a range of street obstacles. A city ordinance requires that skateboarders and in-line skaters wear proper safety equipment, including helmets and pads, before using the park. Families who want to beat the heat can hit the pool at the Sierra Fitness and Recreation Center, which offers free swimming, lap swimming and a children’s play area with a waterslide.