All is not always calm this time of year, but peace reigns at Fullerton Arboretum, a quiet 26-acre oasis in the middle of urban Orange County. It’s on the campus of Cal State Fullerton, and with most of the campus closed for the holidays, this is the perfect time to take a stroll through the diverse gardens and woodlands situated in between student housing and the baseball fields.
As soon as you enter the arboretum, the scent of sage fills the air. Relax in a forest of conifers to get in the holiday spirit, or stroll around the lake to unwind from the stress of the season. Different gardens are filled with plants from around the world—visit Africa, Asia, or South America … they even have banana and plantain trees! Or check out the orchard and farms to see some of the fruits and vegetables that will fill your holiday feast. Multiple paths weave their way throughout the arboretum, making it easy to get lost in thought … or just plain lost. Be sure to check out the map at the front to help you find your way—or use this excellent online interactive map. Thankfully benches are bountiful here.
The Fullerton Arboretum is located at 1900 Associated Rd. in Fullerton. From the 57 Freeway, exit onto Yorba Linda Blvd. and head west. Make a left on Associated Rd. and veer left at the fork, following signs for the arboretum. Open daily, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Admission is free, but a $5 donation is suggested. No dogs.