10 Best Things to Do in Arcadia, CA

10 Best Things to Do in Arcadia, CA Featured Image

Credit: Image by inboundREM | Source

Nestled at the foothills of the picturesque San Gabriel Mountains, Arcadia, CA is a true hidden gem worth exploring.

This charming city offers many opportunities to learn about its rich history and culture, experience the beauty of its natural attractions, and enjoy its thriving culinary and retail scene.

If you’re planning to visit and would like to know all the best things to do in Arcadia, this article enumerates our top ten list.

Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden

The Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden is an internationally famous 127-acre botanical garden and historical site.

The Arboretum landscape is home to historical landmarks that feature Native American, Rancho Period, and late 19th century treasures, such as the Queen Anne Cottage and the Santa Anita Train Depot.

The Mayberg Waterfall, fountains, ponds, and themed gardens are worth exploring. There are various activities year-round, including concerts, as well as nature and gardening classes.

Queen Anne Cottage and Coach Barn

Queen Anne Cottage and Coach Barn

The Queen Anne Cottage and Coach Barn were constructed on the grounds of the Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden in the 1880s by land baron E.J. “Lucky” Baldwin. In 1980, these Victorian-style structures earned a spot on the National Register of Historic Places.

This is a great destination for couples visiting Arcadia, with expansive grounds and striking architecture perfect for taking a romantic and leisurely stroll.

Santa Anita Park

Next stop – the Santa Anita Park. Arcadia, CA’s thoroughbred racetrack, offers some of the prominent horse racing events in the country.

Popularly known as “The Great Race Place,” Santa Anita features a one-mile dirt track, a seven-furlong Camino Real turf course, and a hillside turf course for about six-and-a-half-furlong races. There are 61 barns in the park, with over 2,000 horses and an equine hospital.

Spanning 320 acres, Santa Anita Park has a 1,100-foot grandstand that can seat 26,000 guests. This historic landmark’s facade is rendered in an Art Deco style and is largely the original from the 1930s.

Huntington Library, Art Museum, and Botanical Gardens

Photo by Oxana Melis on Unsplash

Huntington Library, Art Museum, and Botanical Gardens

The Huntington Library, Art Museum, and Botanical Gardens is a 207-acre complex that houses a library and art gallery containing rare books and one of the most complete collections of 18th-century art outside of London.

The 130-acre Arcadia Botanical Garden features living collections in 16 themed gardens where you can discover over 83,000 living plants, including rare and endangered species.

The Gilb Museum of Arcadia Heritage

The Gilb Museum of Arcadia Heritage is a place that celebrates the city’s rich history through various exhibits and educational programs that encourage community involvement.

The museum’s permanent gallery exhibits a chronology of the history of Arcadia, featuring Arcadia’s early inhabitants, Mission San Gabriel and Santa Anita Ranch Owners.

Collections include photographs, archives, art, and historical books that reflect the local history and culture of the city.

Westfield Santa Anita

Photo by freestocks on Unsplash

Westfield Santa Anita

Westfield Santa Anita, now called The Shops at Santa Anita, is the premier shopping, dining, and entertainment destination in San Gabriel Valley.

Some of the most popular retailers are Nordstrom, Macy’s, Coach, Zara, Free People, MAC Cosmetics, Sephora, H&M, and Michael Kors.

The Promenade at The Shops at Santa Anita offers a garden retreat with upscale boutiques and a stylish open-air setting.

Din Tai Fung

For a unique dining experience, Din Tai Fung is a Michelin-star restaurant worth visiting. It is popular for its authentic northern Chinese cuisine, particularly its xiao long bao, also known as soup dumplings.

The menu includes pork, chicken and vegetable buns, fried rice, noodles, and wonton. For dessert, you have to try the chocolate and mochi xiao long bao and the red bean sticky rice wraps.

626 Night Market

Photo by Syed Ahmad on Unsplash

626 Night Market

Inspired by Asia’s famous open-air nighttime bazaars, 626 Night Market is a place where people can come together to eat, drink, socialize, and be entertained.

If you’re seeking more fun things to do, Arcadia’s iconic festival should be added to your list! The event features over 300 food, merchandise, crafts, artists, games, live concerts, and entertainment attractions.

Aside from the flagship event that takes place in Arcadia, large-scale events also take place in Orange County and Pleasanton, drawing over 100,000 visitors every year.

Santa Anita Golf Course

Photo by Gene Gallin on Unsplash

Santa Anita Golf Course

With a breathtaking vista of the towering San Gabriel mountains as a backdrop, Santa Anita Golf Course is one of the finest public golf courses in Los Angeles County.

This 18-hole, par 71, 6,368-yard golf course features undulating fairways and large trees, cart rentals, club rental, a cocktail lounge, a coffee shop, golf instruction, a lighted driving range, practice putting green, and a pro shop.

Live Oak Park

Live Oak Park is largest park in the city, with 16 acres of field and recreation space. It is home to annual Arcadia events, including the Easter Egg Hunt, Halloween Carnival, and Camp-A-Palooza.

It’s an excellent place to spend time in a green space, whether you just want to go on a relaxing stroll or engage in outdoor activities with friends or family.

Some of the amenities at the park include a playground area, picnic shelters, one full and two half basketball courts, seven tennis courts, and fields for baseball, softball, soccer, and football.

10 Best Things to Do in Arcadia, CA


From its scenic parks to its diverse cuisine and exciting attractions, Arcadia, CA, truly has it all. This wonderful city is truly worthy of a visit and promises to give you a memorable experience.

If you’d like to know more about the area and explore the lovely properties available for sale in Arcadia, I’d love to show you around! Feel free to give me a call at 626-272-2365 or send me an email at kevinkwan@century21.com so we can schedule an appointment.

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, Arcadia holds special events for the community throughout the year, including Snowfest, Breakfast with Santa, Concerts, and Movies in the Park.

Definitely! Visitors will find several attractions in Arcadia where families can enjoy time together, such as Live Oak Park, Westfield Santa Anita, and the Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden.

Yes. The DeSoto-Arcadia Regional Transit (DART) is Arcadia’s own public transit system, providing affordable transportation throughout the day.