It's quite a drive from the South Bay to the OC. But traffic was good on a Friday morning. And parking was easy. There was even an Indiana Jones truck and a space shuttle's head in the parking lot.
Admission to the center was $14.95, more if you wish to see the Indiana Jones Exhibit and watch a 3D show. We just wanted the regular admission since we were only interested in the Bob the Builder Exhibit. They have the Toys for Tots drive since it's December, bring in a toy in exchange for 1 admission per toy. They didn't indicate how much the toys should be. So I brought around the $30ish toy. Our toddler was still free.
There are a lot of science exhibits on the first floor that are all very hands on. My only recommendation is to check if there's a school field trip on the day you're going. There was one when we got there. And there were lots of running around, and it's hard to try certain science exhibit when the kids won't leave an interesting one.
A must try on the ground floor is the Pin Wall where you can push your whole body to make an impression of it. We tried to put our toddler in it. And imprint our hands too. It was pretty cool. I want one at home.
The other interesting one is the earthquake simulator that has 3 adjustments. The first one was interesting(shake.. shake.. shake), the 2nd speed got me scared and outta there. It shook really hard. Haha. I hate earthquakes. But it's a must try.
We look and tried other ones before proceeding to the outside where they have a big dinosaur on the grounds. This is were most of the kids are. It was too much for our toddler so we proceeded to the 2nd floor where it was peaceful.
The second floor holds the Bob the Builder Exhibit. It's really big, lots of tractor for photo ops and interactive things your kids would love to get their hands on.
It was mostly moms with their kids on playdates that were on this floor. Aside from the bob the builder exhibit, there was also an ice hockey related exhibit, recycling exhibit, and more. All interactive to teach kids about science. It's perfect for school children... so I guess you can't really dodge the school fieldtrips.
When we were done with the Bob the Builder Exhibit, that's when the school kids came up the second floor.
So we proceeded to the outdoor exhibit that's space related. This is actually where you'll see the cube that you see when you're on the freeway.
If you get hungry, there's a food court on the ground floor just on the right of the entrance with Pizza Hut and Taco Bell for those hungry minds.
All in all, it was a great place to learn about science with it's hands on exhibits. It's definitely not jut for the kids, the adults will have a good time here too. Just don't put grandma in the Earthquake Simulator. :)