Visiting Southern California
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Visiting Southern California
We are looking for a good location to rent a large house that can
accomodate our extended family (i.e. grandparents, parents &
grandchildren) for about a week in the fall. Family will be coming
out from Chicago and they are interested in somewhere warm on the
California coast, where everyone can swim, and there are enough
activities for all (kids are ages 2 - 6). We have considered either
Santa Barbara or Santa Monica. Looking for any input about these
options, or other ideas?
If they really want sun, farther south might be better, though S Barb
is usually pretty good. It's a little quieter than Santa Monica,
though more driving for the out of towners. You might also think
about Newport Beach. Quintessential beach, miles of it,plenty of
restaurants, some condos available, warm, etc.
We'll be driving between Escondido and LA and were thinking of
stopping by one of the beaches in between to let our 6-yr-old
daughter play. But we're not sure quite where along the way to
make the stop?? There are a lot of beaches in the stretch between
Capistrano and Santa Monica/Malibu, but we don't know how to
research or compare them . . .
Anyone have any recommendations for clean, kid-friendly beaches,
maybe somewhat protected so the waves aren't too fierce, and (this
may be difficult in peak summer months, I know) ideally not really
Looking for the ideal family beach . . .
We stopped at Solana Beach (south of LA) last year and it was pretty nice. I don't know
about swimming there (there were a lot of surfers, but no one just frolicking in the
waves per se, though it was April so still pretty cold), but it was fun for running
around on the wet sand and splashing in the foam, and they have a nice outdoor shower
for cleaning up after.
I grew up on the beach at Corona Del Mar. It has (or had - it's been years!) 2
sides...one was semi protected with mild waves. The other is really protected and is
good for tide pooling.
It's just South of Newport Beach and North of Laguna Beach.
I grew up in So Cal and if memory serves, the area you are describing is family friendly
beach heaven. Particularly, I like Laguna Beach - parking can be tricky, but not if you
are used to here. The water is great, friendly people, it is one of the more eclectic
areas of Orange County. Great restaurants too. - Check out Javier's right on PCH - great
Mexican food! Newport Beach/Balboa is pretty mellow and easy to get to. Good parking
lots close by. You can walk out on the Balboa pier and eat at Ruby's. There is also the
Balboa fun zone to walk around, get an ice cream, ride the ferris wheel. Then there is
Marina Del Rey and Santa Monica further north. All of these areas have bike paths you
can ride on for miles. The Santa Monica pier is kind of cheezy, but pretty at night -
great sunsets in Santa Monica - the promenade is close by - a bit trendy, but safe and
easy to walk around at night. Then there's Malibu. Beautiful, Parking is harder, but not
impossible, you may have to !
cross PCH. You really can't go wrong. Just check the surf advisory, but the summer is
typically pretty mellow. Stay away from Ocean Beach in San Diego - rough water, strong
rip tides. Seal Beach - lots of oil and pollution. Don't know much about Huntington.
Have a great trip!
Missing the So Cal Summer Beaches
Check out Crystal Cove State Park. It is just north of Laguna and South of Newport
Beach. You'll park up on top and walk down to the sand. It is well protected from
waves and very beautiful. That'll be almost half way to your LA destination.
Former So Cal Girl
Any recommendations on what we can do with 2 kids under 3 in Orange County
around Laguna Beach. We will be there in early June for one week. We have
alreayd been to the S.D. Zoo and dont want to go to Disneyland. Any hints?
When you are in the Laguna Beach area, a great place for a visit
is Balboa Island in Newport Beach (about twenty minutes away.) It
really is a little island with great walking streets. The main street
is called "Marine St." and has shops and cafes. At the other end of
the island, there is a ferry service to the ocean side, complete
with a small "fun-zone" including rides and arcades. The ferry
costs about $2 and is a 5-minute ride. Don't forget to try a
chocolate covered frozen banana! Also, at the end of the the pier
on the ocean side is the 50ish diner called Ruby's. We have been
taking our kids there since they were infants. We all love the area.
We have rented a condo on the Newport Beach peninsula for the last 4
years. We've stayed in a couple of different condo's. We always stayed
just north of the Newport Pier (~24th -29th Sts.) because the waves are
very small and the kids can go in the water more safely. We don't stay
beach front as the board walk there is busy. Walking from the condo's
on the side streets(which are very narrow, not busy) to the beach is
easy and safe because there are no streets to crossto get to the beach.
Contact Burr/White, Cannery, or Newport Beach Realities. My sister
always makes the arrangements so I don't have a number to give you.We
always have a great time.
In response to the person looking for housing in So. Cal. I would
recommend looking in Carlsbad, Leucadia, Encinitas, Solana Beach or
Del Mar. (Having grown up in Del Mar, I am partial). The weather in
June can be iffy- very often foggy until mid afternoon on the beach.
All you have to do is go inland about a mile and it warms up a lot so
you might want to stay inland and take trips to the beach to stay
this page was last updated: Apr 14, 2011
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