Also known as the OC, Orange County is the geographic heart of awesome attractions and charming nature. With a well-established infrastructure, Orange County offers countless living, working, and sightseeing opportunities to its inhabitants and tourists.
The area where Orange County is nowadays was inhabited by the Luiseño and Tongva, Juaneño Native American people for a very long time. After Junipero Serra’s Gaspar de Portolà Spanish expedition in 1769, the place was named Valle de Santa Ana, and in 1776 Mission San Juan Capistrano became the region’s very first permanent European settlement. Several people who arrived here together with Portolá were given land grants such as Rancho Santiago de Santa Ana and Rancho Los Nietos. However, in the 1860s, the cattle ranching and the prevailing industry were destroyed by a major drought, which led to a significant amount of land coming into James Irvine’s, Richard O’Neill, Sr.’s and other land barons’ possession. 1887 was an important year for the area, as silver was discovered in the Santa Ana Mountains, which attracted a lot of settlers. This was the reason why, in 1889, Los Angeles County was divided and Orange County was established as a separate political entity. Its name might have been inspired by the citrus fruit in order to attract even more immigrants searching for a place to grow oranges and other crops.
Along with oranges, the Orange County’s early economy was supported by the growth of other citrus fruits, avocados, as well as oil extraction. The Pacific Electric Railway, which was completed in 1904, made the county easily reachable from other neighboring areas and turned it into a popular weekend retreat for early Hollywood’s stars. Moreover, Orange County became a bedroom community thanks to Interstate 5’s completion in 1954. One year later, in 1955, the place enjoyed another boost once Disneyland has opened. In the 1980s, Orange County had become California’s second largest county in terms of population, with over two million residents calling it home. Orange County has, ever since, enjoyed a steady and stable growth.
Orange County is settled right in Southern California’s heart and is the smallest county in the region. The delightful OC measures a total of 948 square miles consisting of 791 square miles of land and 157 square miles of water. Orange County is bordered by Los Angeles County in the north, the Pacific Ocean in the southwest, San Diego County in the southeast, and Riverside County along with San Bernardino County in the northeast. The county’s southeastern end lies on the mighty Santa Ana Mountains, while its northwestern area is located on the Los Angeles Basin’ coastal plain. Its main watercourse is the Santa Ana River, which flows through its middle, more exactly from the northeast to the southwest. Orange County boasts of manicured beaches, delightful coastline, beautiful mountains, forests, picturesque hills, and valleys. Some of the main cities are Anaheim, Buena Park, Garden Grove, Costa Mesa, Orange, Yorba Linda, and Fullerton.
The county is renowned for its typical Californian mild climate, with an average annual temperature of approximately. 68 °F. With 278 sunny days per year, there are 0 inches of snow and only 13 inches of rain on a yearly basis in OC.
Orange County boasts of lively shopping centers, renowned restaurants, entertaining theme parks, mesmerizing beaches, breathtaking natural sceneries, and great museums. Therefore, both tourists and residents have endless leisure ops to choose from. People of all ages can head to Disneyland and Disney California Adventure to experience the thrilling rides and fairytale-like atmosphere. Knotts Berry Farm is another place with millions of visitors every year, where children and adults get the chance to relax and have fun. There are plenty of various conventions hosted at Anaheim Convention Center and the county’s Beach Cities allure their visitors with biking paths, dining spots, mountain hiking trails, golf courses, together with water sports and sunbathing settings. Shopping enthusiasts will be happy to check out some of Orange County’s numerous malls, such as South Coast Plaza (the largest one in the state), Fashion Island, Brea Mall, and Main Place Santa Ana. Plus, the plethora of farmers markets and craft shops are always welcoming locals and tourists.
There are a number of state-of-the-art schools, colleges, and universities in Orange County. With 28 school districts, some of the education facilities under the Orange County Department of Education are Palmyra Elementary School, Sycamore Elementary, Olive Elementary School, Lakeside Middle School, Thurston Middle School, Arroyo Vista Middle School, Richland High School, El Modena High School, and Foothill High School. Colleges and universities sought-after by students from all around the world include Santiago Canyon College, Irvine Valley College, Cypress College, California State University, Fullerton, and the University of California, Irvine.
Several Fortune 500 companies are headquartered in Orange County; Pacific Line, Ingram Micro, Western Digital, First American Corporation, and Broadcom are just a handful of them. OC is also a start-up-friendly place, with a bunch of Fortune 1000 start-ups based here, such as Sun Healthcare Group, Allergan, Epicor, and Edwards Lifesciences. Moreover, the area’s economy is supported by a healthy tech sector; organizations like Gateway Inc, Panasonic Avionics Corporation, Linksys, and Blizzard Entertainment are a few technology organizations calling the region their home sweet home. Other notable firms with headquarters or key offices in Orange County include Mercedes-Benz Classic Center USA, Samsung, Hyundai, Mazda, Mitsushibi, Toshiba, Kia Motors, PacSun, Del Taco, and Toyota.
Orange County’s economy is flourishing, being grounded in key industries like business services, management services, energy, technology, green technologies, finance, insurance, real estate, hospitality & tourism, construction, healthcare, IT, logistics & transportation, manufacturing, BioTech, nanotechnology, and environmental technologies. The area is served by the John Wayne Airport and Fullerton Municipal Airport, and has connections with other regions via a multitude of highways, train, and bus routes.
Overall, with a fascinating history, eye-catching sceneries, a plethora of exciting attractions and recreation ops, a mild climate, a highly-rated education system, and a growing economy, Orange County is a great place to live, work, and visit.