Perhaps Orange County thumbed its nose the slightest bit when it created South Coast Plaza, the biggest shopping center in the nation. What with over 24 million visitors a year, it's a worldwide attraction in itself. Brea Mall is nearly as large, if not quite so famous.
Fashion Island is a different kind of shopping extravaganza. It's outdoor rather than indoor, taking full advantage of its location on the coast. Two hundred shops sprawl out in the open air, along with a Venetian Carousel. If you like a more strictly themed shopping experience, check out Downtown Disney District. The World of Disney and its Disney wares may be the most notable store, but this is more than a strip of Houses of Mouse. The nightlife is great fun as well.
The Outlets at Orange, Orange County’s only outlet shopping destination, is home to more than 120 outlet and value retail stores including Saks Fifth Avenue OFF 5TH, Last Call by Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom Rack, Off Broadway Shoes, DKNY, Calvin Klein, Tommy Hilfiger and more. The Outlets at Orange also offers fun and entertainment for the entire family with over 25 incredible eateries plus a Vans Skate Park, Dave & Buster's, Lucky Strike Bowling and a huge AMC 30 Theatre with IMAX.
Irvine Spectrum Center has shops aplenty . . . as well as a giant Ferris Wheel, one of the largest movie theaters in the United States, and a carousel. The Village at Orange is also outdoor and if its atmosphere is less exciting, it's immense.