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Cool things for a 12 year Old to do near Disneyland

Vancouver, Canada
Level Contributor
21 posts
5 reviews
Cool things for a 12 year Old to do near Disneyland

Hello

Im taking my 12 year old nephew to DIsneyland for one week, Nov 7-14, staying at the Grand Californian, and we will have 2 days not in the park. He has never traveled outside of his basic home area, so this is huge for him.

I am wondering what kind of cool things can I take him to do within the area. I am not renting a car this trip so We will take the public bus or Uber so we can travel within an hours distance or so. He loves comic books and video games so Im going to research maybe a comic book store.

Anyone with kids around this age have any other cool ideas for activities to do?

13 replies to this topic
Long Beach...
Level Contributor
7,740 posts
1. Re: Cool things for a 12 year Old to do near Disneyland

I don't have kids that age-- but check out arcades-

Nickel Nickel-- inexpensive fun

Round1-- a little more pricey, newer/larger

Go VR Gaming-- I haven't been, but very close to Disneyland

Goldfield, Nevada
Level Contributor
11,151 posts
34 reviews
2. Re: Cool things for a 12 year Old to do near Disneyland

Maybe this: https://flightdeck1.com/

Corona del Mar...
Destination Expert
for San Diego, Orange County, California
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59,619 posts
435 reviews
3. Re: Cool things for a 12 year Old to do near Disneyland

I'd go to Dave & Buster's at the Outlets at Orange. Not an all day thing obviously, but fun and there are cool stores at the mall too and a great Van's Skate Park.

Downtown/Old Town Fullerton has two cool comic book stores and lots of cool places to eat. They are straight up Harbor Blvd, very near Disney.

The Science Discovery Center and Bowers Museum in Santa Ana are very cool too.

Long Beach...
Level Contributor
7,740 posts
4. Re: Cool things for a 12 year Old to do near Disneyland

Maybe go-karts?

Yucaipa, California
Destination Expert
for Anaheim
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21,641 posts
2 reviews
5. Re: Cool things for a 12 year Old to do near Disneyland

There is a Star Wars based virtual reality experience on Downtown Disney called The Void. Here is a link to information from the Disneyland Resort website.

https:/…

You might consider Knott's for its thrill rides and the 4 D interactive attraction Voyage to the Iron Reef. There is a virtual reality experience there, in park, for an additional small fee. But there is a minimum age of 13 to do it. The nice thing about Knott's is there are other attractions there that you will enjoy as well.

You can get to Knott's by bus, the Metro 460. Fare is $1.75 each way per rider. Takes less than a half hour from Disneyland Resort and has an very good schedule. You will need to walk through Downtown Disney to the Main Entrance on Harbor since the bus stop is there. Alternatively, you can take Uber or Lyft. Average fare is $11 to $13 before tip (one way). Keep in mind anytime you enter Downtown Disney from the Grand Californian you need to pass through security. Depending on how you look at it, taking one of the ride share services could be nicer all the way around. There is a security check at Knott's too before entering the park, although it seems much easier. There is a drop off practically right in front of it. If taking the bus you will walk a couple of blocks before you reach Knott's. (Or cut through one of their parking lots that is near the stop.)

When in DCA he might like the Guardians of the Galaxy and the Black Widow meet and greet.

Edited: 15 October 2018, 11:30
Yucaipa, California
Destination Expert
for Anaheim
Level Contributor
21,641 posts
2 reviews
6. Re: Cool things for a 12 year Old to do near Disneyland

Other ideas, based on the fact he hasn't been to Southern California:

Take the OC Beach Tour so he can see more of the area. It goes to several beaches in Orange County with more time at the beach of your choice.

Take the train to San Juan Capistrano to visit a real early California Spanish Mission.

Take the train to San Clemente Beach.

Take the train to Los Angeles and take the Hop On Hop Off Tour, then take the train back. Get advice in the Los Angeles Forum for this one.

It's very easy to rent a car for a day if you want to really explore on your own.

Vancouver, Canada
Level Contributor
21 posts
5 reviews
7. Re: Cool things for a 12 year Old to do near Disneyland

Thank you very much! All great ideas.

Ill pitch these ideas to him and see what he thinks. I want to do VR, so we'll check those both out and see which one is best for us. The comic book stores in Old Town Fullerton look great, and Ive always wanted to do go-karts so Im hoping he does too!

Thank you again!

Santa Monica...
Destination Expert
for Santa Monica
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22,490 posts
262 reviews
8. Re: Cool things for a 12 year Old to do near Disneyland

You'll be 45 minute via ride share from Los Angeles, we have many cheap and free things for families to do!

LA is a great place with kids. Here's a list of many cheap or free options:

Griffith Park has many things to do from hiking trails to train and pony rides to the lovely Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Gardens http://www.laparks.org/griffithpark

Our zoo is affordable (half the price of that big one!), rich in educational information, has natural looking homes for the animals, and we've pumped a lot of money into their care and comfort - go in the morning, it's very special.

Across the parking lot from the zoo is the Autrey Center of the American West https://theautry.org/

Nearby, you can enjoy Echo Park’s pretty views of downtown LA, Swan paddle boats to rent, and lotus blooms.

***

Hollywood takes a couple of hours to see the stars, hand/footprints, H'wood sign. Consider a movie at El Capitan, where there are often live shows before the movie. Or a play at The Pantages Theater. Need more Hollywood-centric things to do? http://www.seeing-stars.com/

From the Walk of Fame, take the DASH shuttle to Griffith Observatory https:/…observatory.html

The shuttle is your best way as there is limited parking at the location. Great views of the city, especially at night, there are often Star Parties (no not celebrities) to see the night sky. A good view of the Hollywood sign can be had from a short trail behind the Observatory itself, too. If you want some exercise, instead of driving or using the DASH shuttle to and from Griffith Observatory, walk via Fern Dell trail, a nice shaded one: simpsoncity.com/hiking/griffith/ferndell.html

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From Hollywood it’s less than 4 miles to the La Brea Tar Pits, a completely unique place in the world! http://www.tarpits.org/

The Los Angeles County Museum of Art http://www.lacma.org/ and the Petersen Automotive Museum https://www.petersen.org/ are within walking distance of La Brea Tar Pits.

From hereou can walk one mile to The Grove/Original Farmers Market, along the way passing Pan Pacific Park, a fun stop with the kids. The Grove is a mall/gathering place that is attached to the beloved Original Farmers Market food hall https://www.farmersmarketla.com/.

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Stroll along Beverly Hills Rodeo Drive (easy to do on the way to or from the beaches), use their trolley to explore the town. Bring the kids here: sprinkles.com/locations/…cupcakes

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In downtown LA, the California Science Center (Endeavor Space Shuttle) https://californiasciencecenter.org/ and Natural History Museum (impressive Dino Hall) https://nhm.org/site/ are located side by side along the Metro Expo line. Both are linked by the pretty Exposition Park rose gardens, families really enjoy for a stroll and photo ops. They are free, but for the special exhibits.

Other downtown Los Angeles family fun include: Grammy Museum, Olvera Street, OUE Skyslide is an adventure, and the shortest funicular in the world, Angels Flight is a hoot! The Broad and MOCA have modern art, the Arts District is full of murals, do a walking tour or two: https:/…walking-tour-street-art-arts-district

https:/…self-guided-tours

Sporting events can be enjoyed at Staples Center, Banc of California Stadium, and Dodger Stadium, Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.

***

A day at the beach can include the Santa Monica pier's rides and arcade, historic carousel, small aquarium beneath the pier. The beach is dotted with playgrounds and the beach bike path, completely flat so fun for all ages (plenty of bike rentals at the beach). Perry’s Cafe’s dot the beach, they provide bike and chair/umbrella rentals. The Annenberg Community Beach house is to the north:

https:/…beach-rentals.aspx

Tongva Park in Santa Monica has a splash pad for children. The Third St. Promenade has street performers, balloon makers, shopping/dining.

Marina del Rey is the place to go to get on the water for a whale watching tour, parasailing, SUP, sailboat rental, sunset cruise and more. https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attractions-g326…

Malibu is a joy! 27 miles of scenic beauty along PCH, with beaches on one side, hiking trails on the other. Tidepool at Leo Carillo State Beach (look up low tide, be there one hour prior). Nearby is the big sand dune children of all ages love to run down. Many hiking trails in the Santa Monica mountains in Malibu, the best time is between December through June, otherwise it’s tinder dry. Charmlee Wilderness Park is a good bet for families. https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attractions-g326…

Between the beaches and Hollywood is Beverly Hills. Stroll along Beverly Hills Rodeo Drive (easy to do on the way to or from the beaches), use their trolley to explore the town. Bring the kids here: sprinkles.com/locations/…cupcakes

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Wonderful outdoor/natural areas throughout the city: Coldwater Canyon, Franklin Canyon, Fryman Canyon, Runyon Canyon, Griffith Park, Rancho Park, Baldwin Hills Scenic Overlook, Kenneth Hahn State Recreation Area, Santa Monica Mountains, 75 miles of beaches from Malibu to Long Beach.

Corona del Mar...
Destination Expert
for San Diego, Orange County, California
Level Contributor
59,619 posts
435 reviews
9. Re: Cool things for a 12 year Old to do near Disneyland

You are going to Anaheim.

There is no need to leave Orange County.

Vancouver, Canada
Level Contributor
21 posts
5 reviews
10. Re: Cool things for a 12 year Old to do near Disneyland

scotca075, How is your response to my question going to help me in any way possible? Why even bother?

I didn't ask for ideas outside of Orange County, I asked for ideas "within the area" and mentioned Im OK with taking Uber or a bus up to 1 hour.

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