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Tuesday, October 3, 2023

10 Reasons to Visit Newport Beach, California

Situated on 10 miles of coastline, Newport Beach is California at its best. The coastal city is made up of more water than land and divided into 10 distinct neighborhoods, each offering unique experiences for visitors, from surfing, yachting, and whale watching to dining at some of Southern California’s best restaurants and exploring the amazing natural surroundings.

1. Miles and Miles of Golden Beaches

With 10 miles of pristine coastline, the golden sands of Newport Beach are some of the finest in California, perfect for swimmers, surfers, and sunbathers alike. Beaches range from small coves such as Corona Del Mar, flanked on both sides with rocky reefs for spectacular diving, to spacious Newport Municipal Beach, a five-mile stretch backed by a boardwalk for strolling, skating, and cycling.

2. Encounters with Whales and Wildlife

The waters surrounding Newport Beach are home to an array of whale species, including grey whales, most often spotted in winter and spring, and blue whales, who tend to appear in the warmer months. A spectacular attraction for families, couples, and solo travelers, visitors can watch from the land or head out by boat for face-to-face sightings, with plenty of operators offering group tours and private excursions.

3. A Surfer’s Paradise

Renowned as one of the surfing capitals of the world, Newport Beach attracts both pros and beginners seeking to take to the waves. First-timers can enjoy the gentle waves just north of Newport Beach Pier, while more seasoned surfers should try popular spots such as 15th Street and 56th Street. Only the most experienced surfers should brave The Wedge, the biggest swell in Southern California with the potential for 30ft waves drawing in crowds from all over the world.

4. Dock & Dine

Brimming with enticing restaurants, those enjoying the nautical lifestyle of Newport Beach can enjoy incredible menus without needing to leave their boats thanks to the city’s Dock & Dine initiative. Sail through the harbor and dock at one of the many waterfront restaurants to enjoy delicious meals onboard surrounded by beautiful water views and the cool ocean breeze.

Crowned Orange County’s best culinary community, Newport Beach features everything from freshly caught seafood and beach bites to farm-to-table feasts and gourmet dining. Each neighborhood has its own unique culinary identity, from iconic restaurants like Nobu and Rothschild’s to local favorites and frequent new openings. Don’t miss the opportunity to try a frozen banana at Sugar ‘n Spice, serving Newport Beach’s favorite sweet treat since 1945.

5. Back-to-Nature Adventures

The historic Crystal Cove State Park stands in contrast to the immaculate architecture of Newport Beach, allowing visitors to stay at rustic campsites in an undeveloped woodland setting. On its southern edge sits El Moro, a 2,200-acre chaparral canyon with 18 miles of adrenaline-inducing hiking, biking, and horse-riding trails, whilst just offshore lies a 140-acre underwater park, ripe for discovery by snorkelers and scuba divers. Elsewhere, Upper Newport Bay is one of Southern California’s largest, most pristine coastal wetlands, best enjoyed while hiking the 10.5-mile Back Bay Loop Trail.


6. Move Over, Rodeo Drive

Situated in central Newport Beach, Fashion Island is Orange County’s premier shopping center, home to designer labels and iconic American stores such as Macy’s and Bloomingdales. Visitors can also find unique treasures at Balboa Island’s independent outlets, or head to Lido Marina Village for a chic collection of boutique and designer stores.

7. Ancient Meets Modern Wellbeing

Relax and rejuvenate uniquely at Newport Beach’s state-of-the-art spas, med spas, and salons. Village Tea Hut hosts calming Tea Ceremonies, harnessing the centuries-old healing power of tea to provide wisdom and clarity, whilst Sacred Healing Sessions’ meditative sound baths put mind and body at ease using resonant music to create a full-body listening experience.

At WAM care, a medical clinic located near Fashion Island, Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy combines pressure and high-dose oxygen to hyper oxygenate the brain and body, and The Hydration Room provides IV vitamin treatments for hydration and detoxification.

8. An Action-Packed Calendar of Events

The city hosts an array of exciting events throughout the year, including the star-studded Newport Beach Film Festival, which celebrates its 25th anniversary this October and recognizes the best up-and-coming acting talent in partnership with Variety. The destination is transformed into a coastal winter wonderland over the festive period, with a show-stopping Christmas Boat Parade taking place annually for over 100 years, showcasing creative light displays on the water by local residents.

9. Hollywood Connections

Not only is Newport Beach a destination of choice for A-Listers, but the city also has a long and illustrious relationship with Hollywood, having been the setting for many films which have gone on to win the prestigious golden figure, including Jerry Maguire and All Quiet on the Western Front. The destination is no stranger to the small screen either, with hit TV shows such as The OC and Arrested Development taking place on its sandy shores, both of which celebrate their 20th anniversary this year.

10. Luxury Hotels & New Openings

Visitors to Newport Beach are spoilt for choice when it comes to accommodation, with a combination of legendary hotels and new openings providing something for every type of traveler. Perched on 504 acres of coastal beauty, Pelican Hill is a five-star sanctuary with a collection of villas and bungalows offering unbeatable views across the hotel’s golf course and the Pacific Ocean. Set to open in 2023, The Pendry will bring a stylish urban aesthetic near Fashion Island and feature the city’s first private members’ club for intimate events, gatherings, and dining. Also new to the scene, VEA Newport Beach is a hub for dining, wellness, and poolside relaxation in an unbeatable central location, whilst Lido House is an intimate beach house-style hotel on the site of the former City Hall.

For more information, visit www.visitnewportbeach.com.

Check out more Travel articles from Green Living.


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