Orange County Secret Spots: The Fullerton Arboretum

When travelers land in Orange County, they plan to go to the world-famous Disneyland or the pristine Newport Beach. They may even plan to go north to kooky Venice Beach or south to quirky San Diego. Visitors who are looking for alternative activities that the whole family will love don't need to look any farther than the Fullerton Arboretum.

The Fullerton Arboretum is a 26 acre non-profit botanical garden located on the grounds of California State University Fullerton in Fullerton, California. Open since the late 70's, the Arboretum offers free entry and is open 7 days a week.

Find directions to the Arboretum here. For those are staying near Disneyland, the Arboretum is about 9 miles away.

The Arboretum showcases a variety of foliage including the Woodlands, Desert, Cultivated, and Mediterranean Collections. Opened in 1979 to the public, the Arboretum is funded by donations from visitors, the Fullerton community, and their monthly events and classes.

Photo Credit: Fullerton Arboretum

Annual Events at the Arboretum:
  • Green Scene Plant Sale (April)
  • Victorian Tea (May)
  • Midsummer Night in the Garden (June)
  • Brews, Blues, N' BBQ (August)
  • Haunted Garden (October)
  • Victorian Christmas (December)
In addition to offering monthly and seasonal events, the Arboretum also has classes such as cooking, gardening, composting, yoga, nature photography, and more. Check out their full schedule. Many of their classes are inexpensive or free, so visitors can take advantage of them even when they are on a budget.

Photo Credit: Fullerton Arboretum

The Arboretum also offers two lakes, tons of different gardens and furry creatures running around, and a dreamy orchard to take a picnic or a stroll. Visitors will notice a house in the middle of the property. The Heritage House is a Victorian-era house that has been preserved at the Arboretum for decades, serving as a living history lesson.

Heritage House
Photo Credit: Fullerton Arboretum

While visiting the Arboretum is free, a $5 donation is suggested to keep the gardening growing. The Nikkei museum, free to enter, also showcases a variety of art throughout the year.

Photo Credit: Fullerton Arboretum

Want to learn more about the Fullerton Arboretum? Visit their website and see their hours, exhibits, and more.

An Orange County native, author Aimee Engebretson spent much of her teen years trying to find the perfect escape from teenage angst while quenching her wanderlust. She found the perfect spot at the Arboretum.

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