Orange County (California)

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Orange County (California)

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For other places with the same name, see Orange County (California) (disambiguation).

Orange County is a county in Southern California.



There are many cities in Orange County; here are a few of the major ones.


Comprising of 34 incorporated cities and various unincorporated regions, it has a total population of more than 3 million, and is the fifth largest county in the United States. The population of these cities range from over 300,000 (Santa Ana and Anaheim) to merely 6,200 (Villa Park). Bordering Los Angeles on the north and stretching towards San Diego in the south, and Riverside County on the east. Orange County is bounded on the west by the Pacific Ocean and the east by the Santa Ana Mountains. The area enjoys beautiful beaches and warm weather year round. Orange County has a reputation for being more conservative than the rest of California.

Orange County is in the Pacific Time Zone and observes Daylight Savings Time.

For emergencies in Orange County, dial 911 toll-free from any phone including payphones. Note that dialing 911 from a cell-phone will place you in contact with the California Highway Patrol.

Santa Ana is the county seat.


English and Spanish are the two most common languages spoken in Orange County. Most government agencies will have someone available who speaks Spanish. In North Orange County, many businesses will have someone who speaks Spanish on staff but the further south into Orange one travels, the less likely this will become. Because of the ethnic diversity of Southern California, there are many neighborhoods where other languages are dominant, mostly from Asian countries.

Get in

By car

Several freeways provide access to Orange County.

  • From the south: Interstate 5
  • From the north: Intestates 5 and 405

By air

  • John Wayne Airport (SNA) - 18601 Airport Way, Santa Ana, +1 949 252-5200. Several major and regional airlines fly into John Wayne airport. Most of the major car rental companies also have locations at this airport.
Airports near Orange County
* Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) - 1 World Way, Los Angeles, +1 310 646-5252. Located 40 miles (64 km) from Santa Ana, about a 46 minute drive south-east to Santa Ana.
* Long Beach Airport (LGB) - 4100 Donald Douglas Dr., Long Beach, +1 562 570-2678, Fax: +1 562 570-2603 e-mail:[email protected]. Located 20 miles (32 km) from Santa Ana, about a 25 minute drive east to Santa Ana.

By train

  • Metrolink - Toll free: +1 800 371-5465. Two Metrolink lines run into Orange County, one between Union Station in Downtown Los Angeles and San Juan Capistrano and the other from San Bernardino to San Juan Capistrano. Each line has several stops in Orange County. A third line, the 91 Line runs from Riverside County to Union Station in Downtown Los Angeles. It has one stop in Orange County, in Fullerton.

Get around

  • Orange County Transit Authority - +1 714 636-7433. OCTA lines cover all areas of Orange County. Fares - Regular: $1.25, Seniors (65 & over) and persons with disabilities: $0.50; Day pass - $3.00, Seniors (65 & over) and persons with disabilities: $1.00, 7-Day Pass - Regular: $15.00, Seniors (65 & over) and persons with disabilities: $5.00.


  • Knott's Berry Farm in Buena Park is Disneyland's neighbor and tends to be less crowded although many of the attractions are less family friendly.
  • Virtually every city has an indoor or outdoor shopping mall.


  • The Beach - Any of Orange County's Beach Cities offers access to the Pacific Ocean.


Orange County has quite a niche for award winning dining, signature California cuisine and ethnic specialties. Orange County is a food lover’s haven with close to 5,000 restaurants serving everything from the freshest seafood to exotic delicacies.


Stay safe

Though the Beach Areas of the county are generally safe, localism among surfers can turn violent. It is best to look at a local guidebook to find areas in which this is not a problem. Inland OC is another issue. Though the county is quite safe, street gang activity is common in areas such as east anaheim and the la Jolla and atwood neighborhoods of placentia. It is also wise to stay out of immigrant slums where facilites and other ammenities can be poor at best

Get out

  • Long Beach is about 20 minutes west of Orange County and has several tourist attractions including the Queen Mary and the Aquarium of the Pacific.

This is a usable article. It gives a good overview of the region, its sights, and how to get in, as well as links to the main destinations, whose articles are similarly well developed. An adventurous person could use this article, but please plunge forward and help it grow!