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Best Free Things To Do in Buena Park, California

Buena Park median sign in Buena Park, CA
Southern California is justifiably one of the most popular family destinations, with near perfect weather year round, pristine beaches and clean water. Buena Park, 20 miles from Los Angeles and five miles from Disneyland, is a charming historical town. You can find a variety of free things to do in Buena Park and then save your vacation budget for the theme park trips. The destination is not only home to attractions for thrill seekers but it’s also a great place to visit for those on a budget. If you need things to do in Orange County California with kids you are in luck. In addition to Knott’s Berry Farm, attractions include Soak City Waterpark, Pirate’s Dinner Adventure and Medieval Times Dinner & Tournament. There are also five free things to do in Buena Park. For more things to do, downloand the free Buena Park visitors’ guide.

Fossils at Ralph B Clark Park in Buena Park, CA


Naturally one of the free things to do in Buena Park is go to a park! The Ralph B. Clark Regional Park includes the Clark Interpretive Center Paleontology Museum. The small museum features ice age fossils and local geology exhibits. See a 9 million year old baleen whale skeleton, thought to be one of the only complete ice age whale fossils in existence. Admission is free, but you do have to pay to park inside the park or you can save a couple bucks by taking advantage of the free street parking just outside.

Once there, you might as well spend the day enjoying the hiking and biking trails, three playgrounds, picnic tables and a lake stocked with fish.

Knott's Independence Hall at Knott's Berry Farm in Buena Park, CA


Walter Knott, who founded Knott’s Berry Farm, was an American history buff. He built Knott’s Independence Hall, an exact replica of the original in Philadelphia. Open daily, except Christmas, 10 am to 4 pm.

The building, which commemorates the signing of the U.S. Constitution and the signing of the Declaration of Independence, retells the debate that led to the drafting of the Declaration of Independence and the creation of the United States of America. Historical exhibits include a replica of the Liberty Bell – down to the crack – and a 1790s horse drawn carriage.Yes, one of the things to do in Orange County California with kids is see the Liberty Bell!

Inside Whitaker-Jaynes House in Buena Park, CA


The city of Buena Park dates to the 1800s. In the Historic District, several well preserved buildings offer free tours. You literally step back in time here. There is a large clock, with hour and minute hands. Assuming you know how to tell time this way, you can teach your kids how to tell time the non-digital way.

Historic buildings include the Whitaker-Jaynes House, which is also the city’s local history museum. The Stage Stop Hotel dates from 1890 and serves as the California Welcome Center. The hotel once served stagecoach passengers and still assists travelers. Pick up free maps and discounted tickets here. And check out the Bacon House, one of the oldest surviving structures from the area.

Marketplace with Silver Bullet and Supreme Scream in the background at Knott's Berry Farm in Buena Park, CA


Head to Knott’s Marketplace, just outside Knott’s Berry Farm, for Snoopy souvenirs and Knott’s jams and jellies, or just to window shop. When you see all the jams, the origin of the name Knott’s Berry Farm makes sense. In fact, though Rudolph Boysen developed the hybrid berry that bears his name, he was unable to grow the berry successfully. Knott’s Berry Farm is where the first boysenberries (a cross between blackberries, rasberries and loganberries) were cultivated. Validate your parking ticket in one of the shops. You can get up to one hour free, a rarity for most theme parks.

Amway building in Buena Park, CA


The Nutrilite Health Institute Center for Optimal Health has twice daily free tours. The interactive experience includes learning how organic farms and rooftop gardens operate. The farms supply the ingredients for the Nutrilite brand vitamins and supplements. Reservations are required, and you must be 16 or older to visit.

After a long day of excitement, choose from over a dozen comfortable & affordable Buena Park hotels -- most are located within walking distance to all major attractions. CLICK HERE for hotel deals. To start planning your SoCal vacation, order your FREE Travel Guide HERE.

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