Irvine Regional Park is a local favorite for many reasons – the train ride, the lake, the playgrounds, the OC Zoo. But did you know that they also host a weekly Farmers Market? During the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. every Tuesday, you can enjoy free admission to the park when you let the ranger at the gate know you’ll be shopping at the Farmers Market. With your parking fee waived, you’re free to shop from a delightful selection of produce, eggs, and more from local vendors, including some that are certified organic. Take your fresh veggies home and make them for dinner and you’ll immediately be able to taste the difference between store-bought and fresh-to-market.
Picnic tables are located around the park for you to enjoy a picnic lunch or to snack on the fresh items you’ve purchased at the Farmers Market. After you’ve finished shopping, make a day of your visit to the beautiful regional park with a walk around the lake. There are several playgrounds located around the park for kids to swing and climb and burn off extra energy. Stop by the Irvine Park Railroad for a ride around the park on the 1/3 scale train for $5 per person. Keep an eye out for the resident peacocks – they often put on a show with their flashy tail feathers. Pony rides are available next to the train station for $5 per child.
For animal lovers, you won’t want to miss a stroll through the Orange County Zoo on site at Irvine Regional Park. For only $2 per person, you can’t beat the experience. Visitors will see reptiles, mountain lions, bears, porcupines, birds of prey, and more. There is also a petting zoo where you can feed the sheep and brush the goats. The goats love making friends and the littles won’t want to leave.
There are also several hiking trails at Irvine Regional Park for hiking, biking, and equestrian use. Trails range from one to four miles in length with easy to difficult options to choose from. For young explorers, there is a nature trail through the children’s garden that is ideal for toddlers located across the parking lot from the Train Station.
The Farmers Market will be closed on holidays and when it rains.