Fun Summer Camps in California For Kids + 50 Ways To Keep Them Entertained

Fun Summer Camps in California For Kids + 50 Ways To Keep Them Entertained

Summer is just around the corner and if your kid is anything like mine, be prepare to hear “I’m bored” about a million times, and that’s just the first week of summer vacation. Last year, I was lucky and landed Reese a spot in summer school and we found some pretty cool summer camps in California. This year I had no such luck with summer school (lucky here) so I’m on a mission to find ways to keep her entertained and still keep my sanity.

There is so much to do in California it can be overwelling so I put together this list of ideas to give you a running start. Reese is nine so most of the things on the list fall into the tween category but you’re sure to find a few things even your picky teenagers will love.

An added bonus of this list is many of these activities continue all year long, so print it out, stick it on the fridge and use it as a year-round fun bucket list. These are also great activities to plan family staycations around.

Fun Summer Camps in California for Kids

There are so many summer camps in California it’s impossible to name them all. From day camps to sleepaway camps there is a camp for almost anything. Here are a few of our favorites.


My Big List of Summer Fun


Things To Do This Summer With Kids

  1. Explore the Queen Mary (Read About Our Experience)
  2. Visit the Aquarium of the Pacific
  3. Brush up on your history at the Natural History Museum
  4. Have fun with science at The King Tut Exhibit at the California Science Center
  5. Take a baking cooking class at your local Williams-Sonoma
  6. Discover the art of pottery at Color Me Mine
  7. Catch a movie at your local Movie Theater
  8. Enjoy dinner and a show at Medieval Times
  9. Spend the night on an African safari adventure at Safari West
  10. Conquer your fear of heights at Skyspace Los Angeles (Read About Our Experience)
  11. Take a day trip to San Diego via Amtrak
  12. Love photography? A visit to the Annenberg Space for Photography is a must
  13. Spend the afternoon in the Family Room at the Getty Center
  14. Explore coding and robotics at the free Apple Camp
  15. Cool off and spend the day at your local ice skating rink. We like The Rinks in AnaheimThings To Do This Summer With Kids
  16. Spend the day exploring an island, Catalina Island that is
  17. Learn about fashion with a free visit to the FIDM Museum
  18. Play tourist for a day on a Hop on Hop off Bus around Hollywood
  19. Try your hand at rock climbing at Sender One in Santa Ana or Los Angeles
  20. Use your brain power and test out an Escape Room, kids edition
  21. Explore the Grove in Los Angeles then have lunch at American Girl
  22. Know a movie buff? Take a tour of Paramount Studios
  23. Catch an outdoor movie at Moonlight Movies on the Beach or Hollywood Forever Cemetery
  24. Try the best fried food ever at the Orange County and Los Angeles County FairThings To Do This Summer With Kids
  25. Grab lunch at the Hello Kitty Cafe followed by a movie, all at the Irvine Spectrum
  26. Spend a day at a water park. Take your pick (Splash, Soak City, Raging Waters)
  27. Visit a castle…Hearst Castle
  28. Spend the day at the beach and ride all the rides at the Santa Monica Pier
  29. Go on a hike at Grotto Trails where you can play in waterfalls and explore caves
  30. Take a short road trip to Palm Springs where you can ride the Arial Tram 
  31. Follow our food tour and visit the Best Cupcake, Donut, Candy & Ice Cream Shops in town
  32. Plan a sleepover with your friends. Check out these fun ideas
  33. Catch a movie at the famous El Capitan Theater
  34. Get your baking on. Take a baking class at Duff’s Cake Mix
  35. Join the circus or just take a trapeze class at Flying Trapeze
  36. Work on a fun DIY project. Check these out
  37. Get cultured in Orange County with a trip to Bowers Museum
  38. Get an up-close view of sea lions at the Pacific Marine Mammal Center in Laguna Beach
  39. Spark a love of science on a visit to the Discovery Cube in Santa AnaThings To Do This Summer With Kids
  40. Get a makeover at Anna & Elsa’s Boutique in Downtown Disney then have lunch at Rainforest café  Gone Out Of Business 
  41. Visit the Imagination Workshop at Kid’s Space Museum Free on 1st Tuesdays
  42. Visit the oldest house in Los Angeles The Avila Adobe and then explore around Olvera Street
  43. Sign up for the Huntington Explorers Day Camp and hang out at the Huntington Library
  44. Experience life on a farm. Pick fresh fruits and vegetables at Tanaka Farms
  45. Test out your driving skills at K1 Speed! Perfect for older kids 48″ or taller
  46. Plan a summer bonfire. Our favorite location is Huntington State Beach
  47. Catch a few waves and learn how to surf at the Surfriders Academy
  48. Get up close and personal with animals at the Orange County Zoo. It’s smaller size makes it perfect for kids 6 and under
  49. Ride a pony, pan for gold or pet animals at Zoomars petting zoo.

While I had Reese in mind when I wrote “50 Things To Do This Summer With Kids-California Edition” (she’s 8), there are several things on the list for kids of all ages (even those pesky teenagers).

My goal is for us to tackle several of the things on this list both during the summer and throughout the year. As we check off experiences I’ll be sure to update the post with a link to the story. Look for the “Our Visit” link.




Things To Do This Summer With Kids