18 Things to Do in Ontario, California
Ontario, California has a lot to offer. Whether you’re looking for a family outing, a date night, or just want to get out of the house and enjoy the great outdoors, there truly is something for everyone in this charming Southern California city.
Next time you want to try something new, use this list of the top 18 things to do in Ontario to get off the beaten path and enjoy the city like a local!
Fun for the Whole Family
These four options are perfect go-to day trips when you want to spend time with the whole family. Kids and adults will both enjoy these fun outing ideas.
Do you have what it takes to escape? The Trapped! Escape Room in Ontario requires logic, creativity, and teamwork to make it out alive. This option is perfect for groups of up to 10 participants.
Choose the room that’s best for you among options like committing corporate espionage, tracking down a criminal mastermind, or the family-friendly “Down the Rabbit Hole” room. Once inside, you’ll receive a series of clues in a beautifully crafted set, and have to solve the puzzle together to escape in less than an hour. Each booking is private so you can have fun enjoying the adventure puzzle with just your closest friends and family!
Just remember that the youngest age to participate is 12 years old so that everyone can contribute to the game. And don’t worry… if you ever get completely stuck, the staff is on hand to give you a hint and point you in the right direction! Good luck!
Scandia is an amusement park, arcade, mini golf course, and family-friendly outing all rolled into one. The best part about it is that it is budget friendly, and unlimited passes for kids start at only $20.25 per person for a whole day of fun.
The variety of roller coasters are perfect for adrenaline lovers who want to get their heart pumping, and the haunted house is definitely not for the faint of heart. For a more low-key day out hit some balls at the batting cage, ride the go-karts, or even step back in time with the arcade games. Scandia is great for families with a lot of different personalities among them because the park has something for everyone.
K1 Speed Ontario
This indoor racing center has everything you need for an awesome family night out in Ontario. Combine indoor go-kart racing with some good eats, and you have a recipe for success that your kids are sure to love.
Prices vary based on membership and times, but on weekdays you can get three races at the discounted price of only $39. K1 Speed bills themselves as “a state-of-the-art venue featuring two professionally designed go-kart tracks, high-performance electric karts, a spacious lobby complete with snack bar, and extensive collection of memorabilia.” So, whether you’re a speed demon or just a spectator, everyone in the family will definitely have fun at this Ontario outing!
Mission Tiki Drive-In
The fourth and final thing to do on our family friendly list in Ontario is the Mission Tiki Drive-In Theater. The outdoor theater has four screens, which means that eight different movies are shown every night because each entrance ticket includes two films shown back to back.
Step back in time at the Mission Tiki Drive-In and enjoy the movies from the comfort of your own car. Showtimes run seven days a week, and tickets start as low as $1 for kids and $9 for adults. Make sure you also bring some extra cash to enjoy the snack bar and the candy, nachos, or buttery popcorn that makes movies so enjoyable! The Mission Tiki Drive-In is a great family night out in Ontario, California, no matter what the season.
One of the best parts of life in Southern California is the beautiful weather that is often warm and sunny all year long. Get active and spend some time in the fresh air with these three things to do in Ontario that all take place outside.
Cucamonga-Guasti Regional Park
This small but beautiful park in Ontario is the perfect place to start a relaxing day outdoors. The park opens at 7:30 am every day and features two lakes, green space, and stunning mountain views. Come for a walk or a jog, or take the kids on paddle boats in the water. Fishing is also allowing in the Cucamonga-Guasti Regional Park.
With 150 acres, the park is big enough to accommodate a variety of outdoor activities. They even have a pool with water slides for the more adventurous, and plenty of picnic tables so you can enjoy your packed lunch outside. The convenient location in Ontario makes this a can’t-miss destination for locals and visitors alike.
Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden
This botanic garden is run as a non-profit organization in Ontario, California. The Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden covers 86 acres and is dedicated to growing, showcasing, and protecting plants that are native to California.
Billed as a “living museum,” entrance into the privately-funded garden costs $4 for children and $9 for adults. However, there are also plenty of “free days” listed on their website for a great day out that doesn’t break the bank. You can also check the schedule to attend free wildflower walks and free beginning bird walks to learn more about the plants and animals in the area.
Finally, don’t miss their workshops! The Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden offers a “variety of plant-related classes and workshops in three tiers: free classes at Grow Native Nursery, paid horticulture/gardening workshops (including popular medicinal plant walks), and paid botany workshops.” Just visit their website for more details!
Russian Village District
If you’ve already visited the parks in the area, or are just a huge history buff, the Russian Village District is another great place to get outdoors in Ontario, California.
The Russian Village District is a street of houses that were built by a Polish immigrant during the Great Depression. The 15 homes were built with stones and any other recycled materials that the families could get their hands on at the time, making them extremely unique and different from all the others in the area. The neighborhood has been listed in the National Register of Historic Places since the 1970’s and is certainly worth a visit!
Museums and Educational Outings
Learn a little more about Ontario and the surrounding area with visits to these four different museums and educational outings in the city!
Planes of Fame Air Museum
The Planes of Fame Air Museum is located just south of Ontario in the town of Chino. Plan a day trip here that’s sure to please any aviation or history buff that you know.
The museum costs $11 for adults and $4 for children under 11 years old. Explore the area and see their major features like the Flying and Static Aircraft exhibition, their restoration projects, military vehicles, and the 475th Fighter Group. You can also check their aircraft flight schedule or visit the 2018 Air Show that features over 40 historic aircrafts.
Ontario Museum of History and Art
The Ontario Museum of History and Art hosts exhibitions, workshops, and events in the city. Its mission is to celebrate the town and the culture and history of Ontario through art. The museum is open Thursday to Sunday from noon to 4 pm and admission is free to the public.
If you want to get more involved with the Ontario Museum, you can also volunteer to work as a tour guide with the Volunteer Docent Program or check out their upcoming events. Some that are available to attend this year include lectures, workshops for educators, dance classes, paint parties, and more. Go alone to appreciate the local art and changing exhibits, take a date for an educational afternoon, or even bring the whole family to enjoy this unique piece of Ontario culture!
Folk Music Center
The Folk Music Center is a store that sells musical instruments in Ontario. However, it’s so much more than that. The Folk Music Center is also a classroom, museum, and concert hall all rolled into one.
Come to explore the unique and wide range of instruments on sale, or sign up for classes with their many different instructors. The Folk Music Center offers lessons to children and adults and can accommodate students of all experience levels. Additionally, spend some time wandering through their attached museum, and learn about the antique instruments and cultural artifacts that they have on display.
Finally, don’t miss their regularly updated calendar of events. The Folk Music Center often hosts local and unique artists in an intimate setting at shows that can be enjoyed by all ages!
Sam and Alfreda Maloof Foundation
This gorgeous house is a unique place to explore in Ontario, California. The home was built by a renowned woodworker named Sam Maloof, and it really showcases his love for all things wooden. The house is beautiful both inside and out.
The Sam and Alfreda Maloof Foundation opening hours are on Thursday to Saturday from 12 to 4 pm to see the outside of the house and surrounding grounds. You can take paid 90-minute tours on Thursday and Sunday, which are the only way to visit the interior of the home. Now, the foundation also supports arts in Ontario and hosts exhibitions and events throughout the year.
If you’ve exhausted your list of things to do and see in Ontario, California, there are still plenty more options to add to your list. Here are some of the best annual and special events in Ontario every year!
Citizens Business Bank Arena
The Citizens Business Bank Arena will be celebrating its 10 year anniversary in 2018. The arena is a staple of Ontario and hosts plenty of interesting events throughout the year. If you’re into sports, you can catch an Ontario Reign hockey game, the Agua Caliente Clippers of Ontario basketball team, or even indoor arena soccer.
Music lovers can see regular concerts or music festivals at the Citizens Business Bank Arena, and Disney on Ice brings fun for the whole family into town. Finally, if you’re looking for something a little out of the ordinary, consider visiting the Citizens Bank Arena for a comedy show! Check out the schedule of events to stay up to date on all the new shows added throughout the year.
Ontario Convention Center
The Ontario Convention Center is one of the most beautiful buildings in the area. With an ultra-modern look, high ceilings, and glass walls, a night here is sure to be unforgettable no matter what you decide to do.
The calendar of events here encompasses a wide range of activities that can entice even the pickiest visitor. Some upcoming things to do in the Ontario Convention Center include the California Future Leaders of America 2018 State Leadership Conference, the Hall of Fame Dance Competition, the Core-Mark Annual Food Show, a Mother’s Day event, Comic Con Revolution, and so many more!
Annual Events in Ontario
There are major events that you can enjoy every year in Ontario, California as well. Some interesting options include EggFest 2018, whose event website states that “the EggFest is a good excuse to get a bunch of people together and make some great food.There will be live music, great food, amazing craft beer, cooking classes and activities for the kids.”
Additionally, don’t forget to add the Third Annual Veggie Connection to your calendar, and start training for the World Health Run!
Food and Drink
Sometimes, all you need is a relaxing night out with dinner and a few drinks. If that’s your plan for the weekend then look no further than these four things to do in Ontario, California!
Visit a Winery
There are multiple wineries around Ontario, and two of the most popular are the Mountain Vista Winery and Vineyards and The Wine Tailor.
The Mountain Vista Winery and Vineyards was built in the Cucamonga Valley in 1904 and offers wine tastings of their premium grape harvests. The winery also has a wine club membership, merchandise, and Estate Home Winemaking events.
The Wine Tailor is also located in the Cucamonga Valley and was founded in 2004. They also offer a wine club for residents and visitors to join, have a restaurant on site for a romantic night out, and schedule wine tastings six-nights a week.
Both wineries are a perfect place to visit for a unique twist on a date night with your significant other!
Graber Olive House
This isn’t a restaurant in Ontario, California, but it is a great place to try some local snacks. The Graber Olive House and cannery has a large gift shop to browse and stock up on all of your favorite olive products, and buy gifts for friends and family. Another main draw of the Graber Olive House is their beautiful grounds with unique art displays.
A trip to the Graber Olive House is the perfect place to expand your both your taste buds and your knowledge from the tours that are offered weekly throughout the year.
The Sycamore Inn is a beautiful historic inn and restaurant that has been running since 1848. The inn has lush surrounding gardens, mountain views, and an expansive porch to take it all in. Come for lunch or dinner any day of the week and enjoy this little piece of romantic history in Ontario. The ambiance is celebrated here, but diners also enjoy the extensive wine menu and delicious steaks.
Top Things to do in Ontario
There are many different things to do in Ontario, California if you know where to look. Plan family-friendly outings at Trapped! Escape Room, the Scandia Ontario amusement park and arcade, the K1 Speed go-kart tracks or the Mission Tiki Drive-In.
You can also enjoy the great outdoors and the beautiful Southern California weather at the Cucamonga-Guasti Regional Park, Rancho Santa Ana Botanical Garden, or the historical Russian Village District. If you want to connect with culture on an educational outing, consider visiting one of the many museums in Ontario. Some of the best are the Planes of Fame Air Museum, Ontario Museum of History and Art, the Folk Music Center, and the Sam and Alfreda Maloof Foundation.
If you’re interested in sports or special events, try checking the calendars at the Citizens Business Bank Arena and Ontario Convention Center. Finally, enjoy a relaxing night on the town enjoying all the best that Ontario has to offer with a tour and tasting at the nearby wineries, a visit to the Graber Olive House, or getting dinner at the historic Sycamore Inn.
Exploring Ontario, California is fun for families, couples, and every traveler and local in the area. Use this list of 18 things to do in Ontario to get started today!