Top things to do

Top Choice Mall in Costa Mesa

Camp

Vegans, treehuggers and rock climbers, lend me your ears. The Camp offers one-stop shopping for all your outdoor and natural-living needs. Active Ride Shop and Seed People’s Market for outdoor gear and fair-trade ho…
Top Choice Mall in Costa Mesa

Lab

Sister property to the Camp across the street, this outdoor, ivy-covered ‘anti-mall’ is the original in-your-face alternative to South Coast Plaza, even if nowadays more (cool) national chains have moved in. Sift th…
Top Choice Mexican in Costa Mesa

Taco Mesa

Brightly painted in Mexican Day of the Dead art, this out-of-the-way stand is a local institution for fresh, healthy, sustainably farmed tacos of steak, beer-battered fish and more, with an awesome salsa bar. We lik…
Cafe in Costa Mesa

Milk + Honey

This minimalist cool cafe takes fair-trade, shade-grown and organic coffee a little further, with unusual flavor combinations that (mostly) work: Spanish latte, lavender latte, plus chai tea, fruit smoothies, season…
Mall in Costa Mesa

South Coast Plaza

The stats at SoCal's premier luxury shopping destination speak for themselves: About $2 billion in annual sales, over 250 boutiques, 30 restaurants, five department stores, three valet stations and 10,000 parking sp…
Desserts in Costa Mesa

Sidecar Doughnuts & Coffee

It may be in the back corner of a nondescript strip mall, but Sidecar's a landmark nonetheless. Crowds line up out the door (especially on weekends) for what are billed the 'world's freshest doughnuts.' Changing out…
Californian in Costa Mesa

Eat Chow

This hipster gourmet eatery does dishes like rib-eye Thai beef salads, grilled salmon tacos with curry slaw, and bodacious burgers like the Chow BBQ burger with homemade barbecue sauce, smoked Gouda and crispy onion…
Public Art in Costa Mesa

California Scenario

The renowned sculptor Isamu Noguchi designed this 1.6 acre sculpture park, steps from the arts center near South Coast Plaza and the Segerstrom Center. Noguchi's minimalist works honor the landscape of his native Ca…
Ramen in Costa Mesa

Kitakata Ramen Ban Nai

The US location of a popular ramen chain from northeastern Japan is known for its chewy, curly, wobbly (their word) hand-crumpled noodles. The broth stews for hours yet remains light, while the chashu (sliced pork) …
Californian in Costa Mesa

Plums Café

Raise your breakfast game at this gourmet caterer’s bistro tucked in the corner of a cookie-cutter strip mall. With its exposed brick walls and sleek designs, Plums will have you feeling oh-so-chic as you nibble Dut…