We all know which half of trick-or-treat is the best. In order to acquire the best treats, one must venture forth into undiscovered lands and embrace people from far and wide. Luckily, Orange County is pretty dense and you don’t have to go too far away from home to score some killer candy. From haunted houses to rich people, there will be something worth checking out come this All Hallows’ Eve, but be sure to bring a friend, as nobody should enjoy these riches alone.
Rustic Cowan Heights
Santa Ana, CA 92705
Once the most affluent parts of Orange County, Cowan Heights is the optimal place for trick-or-treating as it ensures some top-notch candy. It is no fun walking down a street where half of the houses have turned off their lights, signaling all ghosts and ghouls to keep walking. Cowan is prepped and ready for an influx of door-to-door visitors, and excellent costumes are sure to be rewarded with the best snacks available. Sometimes going to rich neighborhoods will end up in pennies, apples and other non-spirited delights, but the community built on an Oil Tycoon’s back is sure to deliver this Halloween season.
Irvine, CA 92620
Besides being one of the more affluent parts of Irvine, Trabuco Road and its surrounding area is a perfect location for a safe jaunt. Annually rated one of the safest cities in America, and always at the top of Orange County lists judging the same criteria, Irvine has some of the biggest tech giants in the world and a few live in this area. If stopping to check out the haul stuffed inside a once-empty pillow sack is on the agenda, hang out at Balloon Park to people watch and count the goodies. Irvine has a lot of nice places to visit, but nothing will bring in more candy than a trip down Trabuco Road.
Westwing and Eastwing
Aliso Viejo, CA 92656
Similar to the Irvine area, Aliso Viejo is a beautiful place to take a nighttime stroll. The abundance of parks around the Eastwing and Westwing neighborhoods is great for families and the dense nature of that neighborhood means less time walking and more time munching. Conveniently located off of the 73, Aliso Viejo’s excellent neighborhood is smashed in between a looped street and topped off by Aliso Creek Road. Bringing more than one bag is advised, as there are well more than 100 houses in a short mile radius.
West Katella Avenue
Anaheim, CA 92802
Besides being right down the street from Disneyland, Katella has a ton to offer. Local businesses participate in trick-or-treating and any of the side streets will offer plenty of houses with plenty of doors to knock upon. If the kids are up to it, swing by the Empty Grave on West Katella: a maze/haunted house built for scares and not as cheesy as other spooky places billed in Orange County. This place takes its scares quite seriously, and is often up for multiple awards come Halloween time, so bring your courage as well as your best costume and brave the Empty Grave.
Magnolia and Nightingale
Fountain Valley, CA 92708
Every year, this little neighborhood in Fountain Valley picks a theme and goes all out. Last year, Star Wars was the main attraction, with dozens of people dressed in character and props such as the Death Star, X-Wings and a Millenium Falcon. Even if you aren’t dressed in the appropriate garb, this awesome gathering welcomes all, young and old, and there is no telling what this year’s event is going to be…you just have to trust that it will be awesome. While you might not get scared or leave with tons of candy, the amount of work that goes into making such a spectacle must be seen at least one Halloween.
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Jesse Seilhan is a writer, editor and photographer from the California Bay Area. After moving to Long Beach, Jesse continues his passion for writing and music by covering concerts, interviewing top artists, and giving a dose of wisdom in a crazy, mixed-up musical world. His work can be found at Examiner.com.