"Santa Ana" Santa Ana by Yaqui

Santa Ana Travel Guide: 44 reviews and 135 photos

Old Orange County Courthouse

Originally named Saint Anne by Don Gaspar’de Portola expedition 1769, it was given to Jose Antonio Yorba and his cousin as a Spanish land grant. The Yorba family returned and who were the first settlement in this vast area. Rancho Santiago de Santa Ana raised cattle and farmed for almost 80 years until ownership ended up into the US hands around 1846 to the Ross family who bought 650 acres. It was not until William H. Spurgeon who rode thru the vast landscape covered in wild mustard plants that he knew this is where he wanted to create a new home in 1869. He bought 74 acres from the Ross family and began his planning of a new city he named Santa Ana. He was the first postmaster in 1870 and the first mayor in 1886. He even established many roads leading from Anaheim so the Wells Fargo could bring in passengers and mail as well with establishing a water supply due to the natural wells. He remained active until his death in 1915 at the age of 88. Now Santa Ana is the center or Orange County government and considered a major city in the state of California.

Discovery's Science Center

The land that time forgot?! This wonderful center has more than 100 hands-on exhibits, live science exhibits you can participate in and so much more. There are two floors, plus a courtyard that has the Dino Quest with lots more to see and do. My youngest was absolutely enthralled with the Dino quest and wanted to see everything. He was smiling from ear to ear. A great place!

We must have explore every inch of the center and we all had a great time. It was fun watching the boys get so involved in all the exhibits. Mom and Dad had a great time too, but was worn out by the time we left:-). A great place to brings kids of all ages!

Bowers Museum

The main reason for coming to Santa Ana was to experience and see the Terra Cotta Warriors exhibit at the Bowers Museum. As a kid, we had a subscription of National Geographic magazine. In one of those issues back in 1974 or 75, they had discovered a whole army of warriors, chariots, horses, officials, acrobats, strongmen, and musicians. They have discovered over a 1,000 and estimate in three of the pits will contain over 7,000 soldiers, 130 chariots with 520 horses and 150 cavalry horses and more to be discovered. I must have worn out that issue because I was so fascinated by it and still am.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Lovely city, loads of history!
  • Cons:Lots of gang activity here, so sightsee during the day!
  • In a nutshell:Still a lovely city rich in history and culture to see!
  • Last visit to Santa Ana: Dec 2007
  • Intro Updated Jun 23, 2009
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Reviews (19)

Comments (7)

  • MalenaN's Profile Photo
    Mar 8, 2012 at 11:15 PM

    Lots of memorials here! Great that you got to see some of the Terra Cotta Warriors! There was an exhibition with them in Stockholm a couple of years ago too, but I never got to see them. Guess I have to go to China one day to see the whole army.

  • hopang's Profile Photo
    Jul 15, 2010 at 12:12 PM

    Excellent Santa Ana travel page. The city indeed looks interesting to visit and explore with lots of lovely architectural buildings and war memorials. Thanks for sharing. ~ho & pang

  • csordila's Profile Photo
    Feb 18, 2010 at 2:00 AM

    I would never have thought that so much interesting places can be found on the neighbourhood of LA. Mike Original with live music may be great!! Many thanks for your Barcelona visit. Best. L.

  • ncfg's Profile Photo
    Jul 10, 2009 at 12:21 PM

    Nice page! Interesting the La Quinceañera history.

  • Mikebb's Profile Photo
    Jul 1, 2009 at 7:36 PM

    Nice page Dee. Terra Cotta Warriors, how lucky you were to see them. In 2005 we took a day trip into China and saw 4 of the Warriors on exhibit . Something special!

  • deecat's Profile Photo
    Jun 29, 2009 at 6:28 PM

    Just love the emphasis on architecture. Such lovely homes, buildings, museums, etc. Wonderful courthouse, clock tower, Minter House, Bowers Museum. Wow! I know what you mean to visit in the daytime.

  • kyoub's Profile Photo
    Jun 27, 2009 at 4:26 AM

    Another one of your very interesting pages, Dee I see there is a lot more there than just the airport. lol


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