La Mirada is a city of about 50,000 people situated in Los Angeles County. It’s considered a suburb of Los Angeles, but it’s known for its small-town feel that makes it seem like it’s worlds away from the noise and crowds of the big city that is only a short distance away.
The city is also known for its lovely year-round weather and central location with easy access to the coast and its beaches as well as many nearby cities including Cerritos, Whittier and La Habra.
La Mirada is home to many parks, cafes, restaurants and shopping areas such as Mirada West Shopping Center, Valley View Square and Green Hills Plaza.
Below are 15 of the best things to do in and around La Mirada, California.
1. Restore and Rejuvenate at Santia Day Spa
Just getting to your destination can be taxing on your mind and body, but an afternoon at Santia Day Spa will help you reset so you’re ready to explore La Mirada and its surrounding areas.
Some of the services available include relaxing facials, body treatments and massages. Only products that aren’t tested on animals and are made in the United States are used.
2. Learn About Local History at the Whittier Museum
The Whittier Historical Society oversees the Whittier Museum, and it is responsible for the collection and preservation of the items that are displayed there.
Within the exhibits, you’ll see a range of items related to the history and culture of nearby Whittier. Artefacts, old photos and memorabilia from past events are some of the items showcased.
As you explore the property, you’ll see a Victorian cottage that is set up just as it would have been at the start of the 1900s.
Also on site is an exhibit about the life and times of Richard Nixon as well as an old barn and a blacksmith’s shop.
3. Check out the Cerritos Farmers’ Market
Every week, rain or shine, a wide variety of vendors set up for the Cerritos Farmers’ Market. This is where you’ll find an assortment of fresh, local produce taken directly from farms in the region.
Other items you’ll find at this popular market include homemade bread and sweets, flowers and honey.
4. Appreciate Local Art at the Whittier Art Gallery
If you’re interested in seeing some local artworks, the Whittier Art Gallery has been showcasing beautiful art from well-known artists from the region since the late 1930s.
Many of the exhibits rotate, and some of the artists who’ve recently been on display include Lynn Azali and Lisa Keffer Ruiz.
5. Satisfy a Craving at Mr. V’s Bar and Grill
At Mr. V’s Bar and Grill, you’ll dine on delicious, traditional all-American fare in a friendly and pleasant environment.
Both lunch and dinner are served, and everything on the menu is made with the freshest ingredients available. Even the sauces and dressings are made from scratch!
Some of the items you’ll find on the menu include appetizers, seafood dishes, steak, soups, salads and main courses such as linguini marinara, chicken kabob, fettuccini alfredo and penne pasta pesto.
The beverage menu includes a wide selection of draft beers and delicious cocktails.
6. Enjoy a Live Performance at the Ruth B. Shannon Center for the Performing Arts
The Ruth B. Shannon Center for the Performing Arts is located at Whittier College in nearby Whittier. Since 1990 this venue has been hosting top-notch performances throughout the year.
Within the center are the Robinson Theater which seats about 400 people and the Studio Theater which is a smaller and cosier venue that seats about 75 people.
Some of the events that take place at this center include concerts and theatrical performances. In the past, the centre has hosted renowned artists such as Los Lobos and Henry Mancini.
7. Take a Break at La Mirada Community Regional Park
La Mirada Community Regional Park is said to be one of the most beautiful parks in the region, and it has an abundance of facilities with plenty of opportunities to participate in a wide range of outdoor activities.
If you’re just seeking a place to get some fresh air and relax or get a bit of exercise, there’s plenty of green space where you can spread out a blanket and lie in the sun or pass a Frisbee around.
Across the park’s 76 acres, you’ll find softball fields, tennis courts, several play areas, picnic areas with barbecue facilities and a 27-hole disc golf course.
Fishing is a popular activity at the lake that is on site, and there’s also a 1.5-mile walking loop where you can spot a wide variety of birds. At certain times throughout the year, concerts are held in this park.
8. Have a Family Day at Knott’s Berry Farm
As far as amusement parks go in California, Knott’s Berry Farm in nearby Buena Park is among the best in the state.
This sprawling 160-acre park features a wide variety of rides and attractions for all ages, and it has been entertaining families from far and wide for over a century.
Some of the rides that are more suitable for older members of the family include the Xcelerator, the Silver Bullet and other roller coasters.
Some rides are suitable for everyone as well, and they include the Timber Mountain Log Ride, the Calico Mine Ride, merry-go-rounds and bumper cars.
Children enjoy exciting attractions, too. Camp Snoopy and a small-scale rollercoaster just for the little ones are just a few.
As you explore the park, you’ll be able to participate in a variety of interactive experiences such as walking around the streets of a ghost town, panning for gold and visiting the Western Trails Museum.
The park is also home to a wide variety of dining options serving everything from fries to pizza.
9. Visit Pio Pico State Historic Park
An entire afternoon can be spent exploring the attractions and wandering the grounds at Pio Pico Historic Park in nearby Whittier.
The most prominent feature of this California Historical Landmark is El Ranchito which is also known as the Pio Pico Adobe. This spacious dwelling was once the home of Pio de Jesus Pico who was a well-known figure in California.
The home was complete in 1853 but had to be renovated in 1867 due to flooding. In the year 2000, it was restored back to what it was like in 1867.
The interior of the 15-room mansion is where you’ll be able to visit the exhibits’ housing artefacts and learn about the history and culture of Whittier and the surrounding region.
10. Tee off at La Mirada Golf Course
La Mirada Golf Course is an award-winning 18-hole course designed by William Bell. This par-70 course is suitable for all levels but has sufficient challenges including lakes, bunkers and blind target shots to ensure your game is anything but average.
The on-site practice area features two putting greens, a chipping green and a driving range that is lit up after the sun goes down. Lessons are available and a pro shop is on site.
11. Take an Exciting Journey with Pirates Dinner Adventure
The Pirates Dinner Adventure in nearby Buena Park takes dinner and a show to a whole new level. When you attend one of these dinner theatres, you aren’t just a spectator, you’re part of the action.
You can choose from several interactive experiences that are suitable for the whole family including Legend of the Loch Ness Monster and Vampirates.
Your adventure starts after you board the 18th century Spanish Galleon and set sail for a thrilling voyage filled with battles, acrobatics and incredible aerial stunts.
Following your journey, you’ll be treated to a fabulous four-course dinner, and if you upgrade your experience, you can dine with the captain.
12. Spend a Rainy Day at the Cerritos Library
The Library in nearby Cerritos is more than just a library. This massive complex is the first Experience Library in the world, and it has been voted the best library in the country by several publications. It’s also a great place to visit for all ages.
If you need to catch up on emails or some work, there are over 200 computers on site. You should have no problem finding a good book to check out for a few days when there are more than 300,000 to choose from.
Children love the spaces that are set aside for them including an aquarium, a theatre and an arts and crafts area. Adults loved the themed reading spaces that include the Old World Reading Room and the World Traditions Room.
13. Visit the Cerritos Sculpture Garden
This budding sculpture garden in nearby Cerritos is a beautiful example of public art in a park-like setting.
Some of the sculptures that are currently on display include a memorial to the Cerritos air disaster and Infinity, which is a light sculpture that changes colors based on available light and shadows.
14. Shop for Beautiful Jewelry at Native Visions
Whether you’re looking for a unique item to give as a gift or you’re looking for a one-of-a-kind accessory no one else will have, you may just find that perfect item at Native Visions in nearby Cerritos.
The beautiful pieces that are showcased at this shop are the creations of renowned indigenous artists from around the region.
15. Shop and Dine at Cerritos Towne Center
If you have some shopping you have to get done during your trip or you just want to browse a variety of shops and make a day out of it with lunch or dinner, Cerritos Towne Center is where you’ll find everything you need in one place.
This open-air retail park in the centre of nearby Cerritos features many retail stores including Best Buy, Kohl’s, Dress Barn and many other women’s, men’s and children’s clothing stores.
Starbucks and Macaroni Grill are just some of the eateries on site, and you’ll also find a performing arts center, library and City Hall in this vast complex.