Update: The fairies are returning November 3, 2019 and will stay throughout the Christmas season.
This weekend, we headed over to see if we could spot the Caring Fairies of the Oso Creek Trail in Mission Viejo. these are the same Caring Fairies of the Aliso Summit Trail in Laguna Niguel. they found a new home at the Oso Creek Trail since the residents of Laguna Niguel didn't appreciate the traffic these popular fairy houses brought to their community. it was sad that the fairies had to move, but i can tell you that the are doing very well in Mission Viejo. and we had such an awesome time looking for the fairy houses along the Oso Creek Fairy Trail.
if you haven't been to the Oso Creek Trail in Mission Viejo, you should try and check it out sometime. it is one of the best family friendly trails in Orange County. great for all ages, it has art, statues, benches and a park along it's route, plenty of shade, and now...dozens of fairy houses hidden along the trail. you have to look closely or you will miss them – they are found in tree stumps, fence posts, rocks, bushes and other natural landmarks.
to visit the Oso Creek Fairy Trail, you will want to park at 27301 La Paz Road, Mission Viejo, California 92692, near the Potocki Center for the Arts. there is a parking lot with free public parking at the beginning of the trail. you can also pick up a fairy map at the Potocki Center for the Arts when it is open from 9:00 am to 6:00 pm. i do admit it was kind of hard to read at first....however, it did become easier after we found some of the fairy houses.
when you enter the trail, you will have to look very closely to find the fairy houses. they are smaller than you think, and easy to miss. to start you on your journey, look for the first fairy house on the trail. it is located at the bottom of a fence post, next to the fence that leads from the parking lot to the Oso Creek Trail. it has a tiny welcome sign and sits below brightly colored pink bougainvillea.
from there, keep you eyes open to spot more fairy houses. they are found along both side the trail that follows the east side of the creek. there are also a few houses on other side of the creek, but you do not need to cross the bridge over the creek if you don't want to. there are plenty of houses on the main side. however, there are some great hiking trail on the side if you want to find more fairy houses.
we had the best time with our two littlest kids searching the trail for the fairy houses. in my opinion, the OS Creek Trail is the best trail in Orange County for toddlers and young kids. most is paved and there are turnouts that have grass to run in, benches and things to explore. you will find fair houses in all these turnouts.
look really closely at the bottom of this fence post. do you see it?
yes, there is a time fairy house located at the bottom. they are truly magical, and fun to find. even us adults had the best time...plus we got some exercise and fresh air.
the details are amazing and the kids had fun pointing out the little objects they saw. each of the fairy houses had items such as brooms, pathways, chairs or stools, and miniature gardens.
the fairy houses can be found in all sorts of places, so you should take the Oso Creek Trail one way on your way up and another way on your way back.
finding the fairy houses along the trail was also a great learning experience – where we could teach...especially our baby girl, not to touch and just look. it took a few times, but she finally caught on that it was fun to look and take the beauty of each of the little houses, and soon she was running to each location to see each of them.
here are some photos from our adventure finding fairy houses on the Oso Creek Trail.
there will be a stretch of trail where there won't many fairy houses, and you will come to a mosaic wall and a stairway on the other.
you can take the stairway up to the park at the top. turn right and head pass the sports fields towards the playground. you will be going back towards the parking lot from where you began. once you get to the bear statues, you will find a few more fairy houses.
you will come to the playground, there aren't any fairy houses around it (as far as we could see), but once you pass it and come to the trail that leads back down to the lower trail, you will start to see them again.
then, at the bottom of the ramp, turn left to go back towards the parking lot where you parked. you can continue to look for any fairy houses you missed. we found some really cool ones like a fairy library and a fairy coffee house.
it truly was a magical evening. such a joy to be out in nature, enjoying the fresh air, and seeing the children excited to find those fairy houses.we came across so many other families experiencing the same thing. all the children eager to hunt those magical fairy houses. this is the life i love living in the OC.