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Orange County and Catalina Island, CA

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About Orange County and Catalina Island, CA

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Mission San Juan Capistrano

Mission San Juan Capistrano

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Beaches along Catalina Island

Beaches along Catalina Island

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Nixon Library Yorba Linda

Nixon Library Yorba Linda

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With its tropical flowers and palm trees, the stretch of coast between Seal Beach and San Clemente is often called the California Riviera. Exclusive Newport Beach, artsy Laguna, and the surf town of Huntington Beach are the stars, but lesser-known gems on the glistening coast—such as Corona del Mar—are also worth visiting. Offshore, meanwhile, lies gorgeous Catalina Island, a terrific spot for diving, snorkeling, and hiking.Few of the citrus groves that gave Orange County its name remain. This region south and east of Los Angeles is now ruled by tourism and high-tech business instead of farmers. Despite a building boom that began in the 1990s, the area is still a place to find wilderness trails, canyons, greenbelts, and natural environs. And just offshore, is a deep-water wilderness that’s possible to explore via daily whale-watching excursions.

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Things You Can't Miss

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Claim a Spot on a Perfect Sandy Strand
Claim a Spot on a Perfect Sandy Strand

See why Southern California is famed for its beach life at Crystal Cove State Park, Newport Beach, Huntington Beach and other hip coastal hangouts.

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Robert Harding World Imagery / Alamy

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Remember Watergate, Vietnam and More
Remember Watergate, Vietnam and More

Relive a turbulent time in American history at the Richard Nixon Presidential Library and Museum in Yorba Linda, where the 37th president was born.

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Image Credit

Ringo Chiu/Corbis

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Don’t Miss Catalina Island’s Crown Jewel
Don’t Miss Catalina Island’s Crown Jewel

There’s no gambling at the Catalina Casino — instead, the iconic building includes a ballroom, theater, museum and fabulous Art Deco murals. 

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Alison Wright/Corbis

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Marine Life Abounds off Catalina
Marine Life Abounds off Catalina

Grab a mask and enjoy some of California’s best snorkeling at Lover’s Cove, where you may see colorful fish, sea stars, octopuses and moray eels.

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Aurora Photos / Alamy

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Relax for a Day on Island Time
Relax for a Day on Island Time

Some of the priciest real estate in America is found on tiny Balboa Island at Newport Beach, where quaint shops and restaurants line Marine Avenue.

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Getty Images

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