Craig Regional Park in Fullerton is in the most urban location of the regional parks I’ve visited.
It’s right across the Imperial Highway near Brea Mall.
On the weekday we visited, I observed many visitors in high heels or suits walk over to the park with their sack lunches.
Once you are inside the gates, the mall and busy city streets fade away–the only reminder of the outside world is the whooshing sound of the 57 behind the soundwall.
Many thanks to Lisa for recommending (her comments in italics)!
How to Get to Craig Regional Park in Fullerton
I took the 57 Freeway towards Brea and took the Yorba Linda Blvd. offramp. Turn right from the offramp onto Yorba Linda Blvd. and take your next right onto State College Blvd.
Follow it quite a few scenic miles to the park entrance on your right (just before Imperial Highway).
A more direct route would be to exit the 57 at Imperial Highway, make a left onto State College, and another quick left into the park entrance.
Remember, this is a regional park so you need to have your annual pass or pay the fee. (Address: 3300 N State College Blvd, Fullerton) MAP to Craig Regional Park in Fullerton
Recommended by: Lisa (see italics for her tips)
Very hilly and lush, lots of room to run around and roll in the grass.
Plenty of different play areas to choose from spread throughout the park.
Our favorite one is across the parking lot from the lake – my toddler runs back and forth from the play structure to the bridge and has a blast.
With so much space to run around and plenty of picnic tables, it seems like it would be an awesome place for a birthday party.
Let’s call Lisa’s favorite playground “Playground #1” (they don’t really have #’s). It’s at the back of the park. Follow the signs from the entrance. The bathroom is literally steps from the playground and there are shady picnic tables and picnic shelters. There are plenty of swings, an old-style dome jungle gym, 4 horse ride one toy, and two fun play structures with fast slides. It’s closest to the lake and bridge across the lake to the sports park.
“Playground #2” is halfway back to the entrance. The bathroom is not as close here, but in the middle of the day the smaller structure was shaded. It’s a very big playground with red standing teeter-totters, ride on motorcycle toys, swings, and bright orange slides.
“Playground #3” is right next to the nature center (open on weekends) and entrance. It’s more for smaller children. It just has one structure, limited parking, and no swings.
- Can be extremely busy around holidays and if there are lots of parties going on. Lots of people driving in circles trying to find a spot to park.
- Coyote territory! There is a sign posted way off to one end of the park that says “coyotes present” but I doubt they just stick to the area around the sign.
- Fee for parking. If you don’t have an annual pass – you should get one!
- Pay parking lots – $3 weekdays, $5 weekends, and $7-$10 on holidays.
- Drinking fountains and restrooms all over the park
- Very nicely raked sand play surfaces on the playgrounds
- Many shaded picnic shelters available for reservation or on first-come, first-served basis
- Grills paired with many of the picnic areas
- The Ted Craig Shelter is absolutely huge and it would be great for a big company picnic. Did you know the official OCParks.com site has a whole reservation system for the shelters? Here’s the link for reserving shelters at Craig and other OC Parks.
- For more information, link to the OFFICIAL OC Parks page for Craig Regional Park.
- Find more nearby parks in my North OC Parks Index
Originally published in October 2009.
Tuesday 5th of January 2016
Craig Park is fun. Dogs on leash are allowed. You can also try to park on Associated and go in a back way (might be treacherous with toddlers)
I will say, it can get very soggy after the rain. Fullerton Creek run into the park...
Tuesday 4th of March 2014
I love this park. I caught some crayfish (put them back of course), and i saw a big frog. :)
Sunday 6th of October 2013
Regarding Craig Regional Park in Fullerton, CA: I would never go to this park again because I think it's outrageous to pay $5 to park. I was attending a baby shower. We pay enough in taxes and should not be charged a fee to park. I tend to avoid patronizing any place that requires me to pay to park. I'm sure the park charges people to rent shelters so their guests should not have to pay to park as well.
Monday 7th of October 2013
Sorry you feel that way, Julia. I'm always more than happy to pay the $5 for the park. I know parks are hurting for dollars and every fee and donation helps maintain these beautiful places where we can play, rest, rejuvenate, and celebrate. My $5 seems a small price to pay for the rich opportunities at our amazing regional parks. Sadly, our tax dollars do not go far enough to fully support these parks. The truth is that the budget for parks is the first to go!