Field Trip to Vietnam in Orange County

This summer we are exploring Asia without leaving Southern California. I know it sounds a little weird but let me explain what I mean. Southern California is home to several different neighborhoods that offer international products, foods and experiences. There is Chinatown in Downtown Los Angeles, Little India in Artesia, Koreatown in Los Angeles and Little Saigon in Westminster OC. We live close to Westminster so on a regular day we visited Little Saigon with friends. Our first stop was the fruit market to experience Jack, Lychee, Rambutan and Dragon fruit.
Little Saigon in Westminster, CA is a neighborhood filled with shops, markets, restaurants and bakeries that bring the Vietnamese culture to Southern California. It is truly amazing that a little piece of Asia is right here in Orange County for all of us to enjoy and experience.
We started our field trip to Little Saigon with the Fruit Market Trai-Cay Ngon located off Bolsa and Magnolia.  The shopping center has an Asian Supermarket, (2) other fruit shops  and other Vietnamese stores.  A friend recommended Trai Cay Ngon Fruit Market because they offer a guarantee on all produce purchased.  The prices are a little high compared to other local markets, however the guarantee keeps regular customers coming back. We experienced long lines and lots of loyal customers shopping for Jack fruit, Lychee, Dragon Fruit and  Rambutan. 
Lychee and Rambutan Fruit was a new experience for us. The texture for both was like nothing we had every seen in nature. Lychee fruit has a leather like appearance. Our first thought on the fruit was will it taste sweet or sour? 

As we peeled the fruit we noticed it looked like a grape with a large seed.  The taste was sweet and very delicious.  Rambutan is sweet, grape like and with a large seed.  It was just as delicious as Lychee.  The kids had fun calling it the hairy fruit and the dinosaur grape.
Jack Fruit is this large giant oval produce. It is one of the largest tree fruits in the world. The inside is yellow with  large seeds. The average cost of Jack fruit is around $30.00 dollars because they are so large. The fruit shop sells pre-cut and ready to eat containers for a lesser price. The texture is like an onion with layers of fruit with a sweet taste. It is an acquired tasted because it is a little stringy and a bit rubbery.

Dragon Fruit tasted like a Kiwi. It was soft, juicy and sweet. The fruit is about 6.00 per pound and it is sold in most markets in Southern California. My family liked this fruit the most out of all the above. The price is a little high for it to be a regular item in our household, but we will eat for special occasions.
The shop was full of tropical produce that we had never seen before or tasted. It was absolutely a learning experience for all of us. We can't wait to return and taste Rose Apples and Asian plums.
The field trip to the Asian fruit market was a great experience for the entire family. It opened our eyes to other delicious healthy food choices as well as educated us about a country on the other side of the world. We experienced hearing a new language, tasting new foods and learning about Vietnamese culture through our visit.

Related links:
Korea Town In Los Angeles
Little India Artesia
China Town Los Angeles
Little Saigon

Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post. All thoughts and opinions are all my own.


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Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post.
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Places to go with family and friends in Southern California.

Southern California is full of fun things to do. This week my family is visiting from out of town. Naturally, I had to come up with fun places to take them to visit. I have come up with a list of "must do" with family and friends before the summer is over. 
summer fun
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Knotts Berry Farm and Soak City - Great shows for the entire family and super fun rides for all ages. Camp Snoopy is a favorite of ours as well as Snoopy on Ice performances. The grilled turkey leg is a must for foodies along with the boysenberry punch. Soak City across the street has water fun! Here is a few of my stories about visiting the park.
Knott's Calico ride is better than new.
Best deal in town is an annual pass.  

Medieval Times Dinner & Tournament - Knights, amour, museum and a baby dragon for dinner. Everyone should visit this place at least once in their life. It transports you back to the dark ages. The kids and adults become glued the minute the tournament begins. This is a no fork, spoon and knife foodie place. Find out how we did on our last visit: FieldTripMom
flea market

Natural History Museum of Los Angeles - Located inside Exposition Park. The location has a large Rose Garden and several other exciting museums all in one place.  There are (7) seven museums in the park which promise to offer an all day adventure. Wear comfortable shoes and get ready to explore museum row. There is a McDonald's inside the museum. Across the street there is other food places for you to choose from. It is best if you pack a small picnic basket and eat near the Rose Garden to save time and money. Street vendors selling ice cream, corn on the cob and trinkets roam the garden. I recommend not to shop with them, as there are signs posted asking you avoid unlicensed vendors.  
 Exposition Park

Discovery Science Center - Centrally located in Orange County. It is a fun educational museum that will make you explore science. My favorite exhibit is located on the second floor "Take the Eco Challenge".  It offers kids and adults to shop, discuss and see what Eco-friendly means. I enjoy my kids love to grocery shop together while they learn Eco-friendly choices. Here is a list of on-going exhibits. Read about our last adventure at the DSC here: FTM
South Coast Plaza - It is a shopping mall with many names like Burberry, Christian Louboutin, Disney, Sears and the Microsoft store. For the younger crowd there is the See's Candy store next to the Carousel ride. The mall has over 250 stores and 30 restaurants with two other shopping centers nearby. It is the mecca of shopping. The Plaza offers fun learning opportunities as well. Just visit the money exchange center and learn about the current money rates. The Microsoft store inside the plaza offers free play on ipads and other electronic devices. Plan your visit and they will help you host a small party for FREE! Here is the link for the free party information:

The Shops at Mission Viejo - Offers an enormous amount of shopping opportunities and food experiences as well as some unexpected surprises. Located in South Orange County and near San Diego, it is the perfect shopping destination for travelers wanting to experience Orange County under one roof. Park your car and find the latest fashions at the shops. Looking for a car then head on over to the Tesla store. The Tesla Motors store has a car on display for you to touch and feel. Kids love to see the automobile store, grown-ups just smile.  Capistrano Unified School District has an office in the shopping center for those who want to take independent studies. The shops is full of adventure and great deals. Did I forget to tell you Old Navy and Forever 21 are super stores at this location? Super Store means lots of selections and more discounts. They also have the Microsoft Store with the free events just like South Coast Plaza (read above).

Artisan and collectibles - Want to find collectibles, artisan items then visit OC swap-meets. This is for serious collectors and bargain shoppers who don't mind getting up before dawn. Find locations and more on this subject:
Swap-meet List
Orange County Market Place - Address 88 Fair Drive, Costa Mesa, CA 92626

Coupons and discounts - Traveling is fun and exciting. It's more exciting when  you can stretch your budget. I look for bargain tickets, coupons and buy one get one free offers. I have found that most visitor centers post their discounts online for the public to use. Go to Anaheim/Orange County Visitors Center to find great deals.  The state of California deal website is Visit California.  Another place to find promo codes and discounts is your local fast food restaurants like Mcdonald's, Wendy's, Wahoos, Del Taco and Burger King. Look for these dollar saving coupons. Read my post on how to get LEGOLAND  and SeaWorld tickets and more at a discounted prices.

Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post. All thoughts and opinions are all my own.