Once famed for its namesake citrus, Orange County today offers contemporary delights that are just as juicy. Disneyland looms large, literally, with its snow-capped Matterhorn poking above the sprawling, seaside suburbia. Prominent shopping centers, which serve as popular gathering places, take cues from the theme park with elaborate, compelling designs—frequently set outdoors to enjoy a blissfully sunny climate. Yet, it’s not all Real Housewives parading their yorkies around Neimans. Before OC native Gwen Stefani put her name on a perfume, she was part of hip, youthful scene that still informs towns such as Fullerton, Anaheim, and Santa Ana. Plus, an increasingly diverse population means more enticing and sophisticated dining options. And then there’s the dreamy, tropical-like beaches, arguably the most alluring in Southern California. Peek behind the Orange Curtain, and you’ll discover numerous noteworthy destinations—mouse ears optional.
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