William Mason Regional Park is a massive park near UC Irvine and the Turtle Rock neighborhood of Irvine. It’s especially good for families who want to take long strolls/bike rides on winding sidewalks beneath towering sycamores. The park is relatively flat, so perfect for young riders. My favorite time to visit is sunset.
- Beautiful lake with waterfowl and nice walking paths – for more adventure, cross Culver and walk along wetland paths
- There are 3 play areas scattered throughout the park, but the largest and most updated is to the left when you reach the T-intersection driving in.
- Two structures make up this brilliant blue play area with: baby swings, a teeter totter, tons of slides (one tunnel slide with a window), and a fun fish – bridging one side of the structure to another
- Great for all ages. Easy viewing of multiple kids from benches.
- Fun hill for rolling down near the play area
- Fee for parking unless you have an Orange County Parks pass
- Definitely prefer play area mentioned above – there’s a very small one near the one mentioned above (but closer to street) and one to the right of the entrance towards the back of the park (too secluded for me)
- Don’t feed the ducks – it can cause botulism outbreaks
- Parking is in the county fee-based parking lot. During peak season it’s $3.00 on weekdays and $5.00 on weekends. Check official OC Parks website for more info.
- Sand and recycled rubber play surface
- Restrooms and drinking fountains nearby playground
- Lots of trees in the park, but not much shade over playground
- Picnic tables and grills everywhere – many under shaded gazebos. Official OCParks.com reservation system for picnic areas.
Originally published in January 2009.