Anaheim, United States
Anaheim (Disneyland), USA: Vacations and travel info
Located in Orange County, California, Anaheim is a mid-sized city with currently around 350,000 residents, making it California's 10th most populated city. It is probably best known for its theme parks, sports teams and orange groves, and in recent years the city has also seen a rapid growth in residential developments, particularly in the upscale area of Anaheim Hills.
The roots of Anaheim can be traced back to 1857, when fifty German families settled in the area, however, it wasn't until 1870 that it was officially incorporated as a city. The city developed a strong industrial base, producing such goods as aircraft components, electronics and also canned fruit. Interestingly, its name is a blend of two words, "Ana" because of the Santa Ana River located close by, and "heim" which is a very common place name in Germany, originally meaning "home".
Nowadays Anaheim is home to Angel Stadium, the Honda Center, and the Anaheim Convention Center, which happens to be the largest of its kind on America's west coast. Although the reason why most tourists come to the city is, of course, for the Disneyland theme park, which first opened its doors in 1955.
Stretching from the Riverside county line in the east to Cypress in the west, Anaheim's city limits encompass a wide and diverse mix of communities and neighborhoods. West Anaheim is where many of the older neighborhoods dating back to the 1950's are located and they join the suburban sprawl that extends out from L.A. Anaheim Hills is an ever expanding upscale residential area, home to the majority of the city's sports stars and top executives. The Canyon is an area located in the northeast of the city, this is still the industrial area and directly contrasts with areas like the affluent Anaheim Hills.
Another up and coming neighborhood is called the Platinum Triangle. This is the area that surrounds Angel Stadium, where the famous Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim baseball team plays and it is currently being developed to feature both commercial and residential properties. Finally there is the Anaheim Resort area, which includes the Disneyland theme park, the main hotel area and commercial and retail areas. This is where the vast majority of tourists come to when they visit Anaheim, and it's a really fantastic place to explore.
A Brief History
The original settlers arrived here from Franconia in Bavaria and made a colony on approximately 1000 acres of land. The first settler was a man by the name of Daniel Kraemer, and he, like the other original inhabitants, was a grape farmer and winemaker. The new "townsfolk" voted to call the settlement Annaheim, which in later years was changed slightly to Anaheim. Unfortunately the winemaking production was short lived due to an insect pest in the 1880's, although soon after lemons, walnuts and of course vast quantities of oranges took the place of grapes. The real boom time came for Anaheim's economy when, in 1866, the continental railroad network was connected to Orange County, making it easy for all the beautiful crops and fruits in the area to be exported throughout the country.
Before Disneyland propelled Anaheim into the spotlight in 1955, it was a very rural area, where orange groves and farms filled the landscape. A man by the name of Bennett Payne Baxter was one of the most prominent landowners and he owned vast tracts of land in northeast Anaheim, which is now the recreational area of Edison Park. He really was a pioneer, developing a new way of irrigating the orange groves, which he shared with the many other farmers, thus helping them succeed as well. Bennett Baxter really did change the face of Anaheim, turning it into a thriving rural community and helping many people make a good living along the way.
The largest tourist attraction in Anaheim is Disneyland, constructed between July 1954 and July 1955, on 160 acres of land that was formerly orange and walnut trees. However it wasn't until 2001 that Disney's Californian Adventure was at last open to the public, becoming the most expansive project in Disney's theme park history, and changing the face of the city forever. With the advent of Disney, Anaheim transformed into the multicultural, diverse city that it is today, as people flocked from around the states seeking work in this new thriving destination. Interestingly enough, Anaheim is set to become a minority majority city, with the Latino community making up 54% of the population.
The city of Anaheim, during the 1990's really began to see itself as a tourist driven hotspot, and thus the Anaheim Resort was created. This remarkable area includes the huge Anaheim Convention Center, the Honda Stadium, home of the Anaheim Ducks, the Anaheim Stadium, where the L.A Angels play, and of course the Disneyland Resort.
The city has spent millions of dollars in recent years in beautification projects and urban redevelopment ensuring that it remains one of the most popular tourist destinations in the whole country. Back in 2007 Anaheim celebrated its 150th anniversary, and opened a fantastic Walk of Fame to commemorate the event. The first star to be placed on the Walk of Fame was, unsurprisingly, Walt Disney, the man who really is responsible for all that this city is today.
Anaheim really is a fantastic destination for a family vacation or a quick break, there are large outdoor areas and parks to explore, there are fantastic dining options, a vibrant nightlife scene and the attractions on offer are simply out of this world! Come and experience all the magic of Anaheim!
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