Tustin real estate is known for its diversity in styles and historical context but the area’s story goes far back. Dubbed as “The City of the Trees,” Tustin has an interesting history dating back to the Gabrielo Indians and early Spanish explorers. The availability of water is what attracted the American Indians and enhanced the growth of the area’s white-barked sycamore trees. Much of the water flowed from natural artesian wells in the ground. This dependable water supply also attracted the Spanish explorers.
Although the Indians were nomadic, the Spanish explorers transitioned them to mission districts to become farm workers instead of harvesters and fisherman. After the Mexican American War, California was annexed by the United States, and land ownership began to change. In the mid-1850s, Columbus Tustin, a northern California carriage maker purchased 1,300 acres of the Rancho Santiago de Santa Ana with the vision of developing Tustin City. Unfortunately, sales were slow and he wound up giving the lots away. However, with the abundance of a steady water supply, the city named after him burgeoned as an agricultural center. By the 1880s, there was a bank, a fifty-room hotel, three churches and a horse-drawn trolley that connected Santa Ana to Tustin. At the end of the decade, the original groves of walnuts and apricots were being replaced by the more profitable Valencia oranges.
Today, Tustin is an urban area and most of the orchards are gone, replaced by homes and businesses, but the streets are still lined with those original massive sycamores. The city has maintained its history in an area known as “Tustin Old Town.” A group of historic buildings along El Camino Real and Main Street house the city’s history with its original blacksmith shop, school buildings and churches. The Old Town Museum has a wealth of information on the city’s history and sponsors the annual Old Town Promenade with garden tours of the historical homes and architectural walks.
Ideally located, Tustin is close to the area’s most beautiful beaches, fine shopping and entertainment venues. Residents enjoy the sparkling beaches at Newport Beach, Huntington Beach, Sunset Beach, Laguna Beach and Corona Del Mar. With miles of sandy shorefront, snorkeling, scuba diving, fishing, swimming and jet skiing are just a few of the watersports the locals enjoy in the sunny skies and Mediterranean year round temperatures.
The city is also less than a half hour from Knott’s Berry Farm and the Santa Ana Zoo. Knott’s Berry Farm is a day of fun for all, young and old. With thrill rides, waterparks, family rides, shopping and live entertainment, there’s something for everyone. Guests can enjoy the spectacular performances by costumed Aztec and Native American singers and dancers on the Indian Trails stage. Shoppers can take home a piece of the old west with the memorabilia at the Old Ghost Town Shops. Thrill seekers can take the plunge on La Revolucion that swings rides over six stories high.
A day at the Santa Ana Zoo is a wildlife adventure. Surrounded by the Pampas Grasslands of South America, visitors are immersed in native plants and water while viewing the Rheas, Guanacos and Anteaters. Patrons can take the Zoofari Express to view the zoo’s grounds and animals. Amazon’s Edge offers a Brazilian jungle experience with its howler monkeys, crested screamers and mallards.
For golfers, the Tustin Ranch Golf Club is a golfer’s paradise. With over 6,000 yards of classic Ted Robinson design, this 18-hole champion golf course offers scenic views with its cascading falls and sparkling lakes that dot the green fairways. This exclusive club also features a full-service clubhouse, restaurant, banquet and wedding facility.
Tustin is a modern day urban city that has evolved into the 21st century, while maintaining its historic heritage. Fine beaches, great schools and close proximity to cultural venues combined with a laid-back lifestyle make it a popular destination.