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Traveling Newlyweds Takeover Balboa Village

April 26, 2018

We’re Costa Mesa residents that have a deep love and appreciation for all things travel and exploration — we spend the majority of our time on the road… or in the sky. :) While we LOVE exploring new cities, exotic cultures, and far-away places, we’ve come to believe that there really is no place like home. Orange County has our hearts, and any chance we can get to go on a “staycation” in our own neighborhood, we’ll take! This last weekend we spent exploring Balboa Village, and it opened our eyes to a whole new side of Newport Beach that we’d never seen before!

Balboa Village is located at the end of the Balboa Peninsula in Newport Beach. It goes without saying that it’s a beautiful location. There’s picture-perfect beaches, a plethora of water sports, restaurants, shopping, museums… There’s even a fun zone! Have we sold you yet?

Enter to win a Balboa Village Staycation!

Contest prize: A Balboa Village Staycation for two including the following:

Once a winner is selected, the prize must be redeemed within one year. Contest is open to all. Contest is not affiliated with Instagram in any way.

Contest rules:

That’s it! Contest ends at midnight 4/29/18. Winner will be notified via Instagram DM on 4/30/18. Good luck!

Our Dreamy Balboa Village Staycation!

We stayed in a dreamy second-story oceanfront rental home from White Sail Rental Properties. It had sliding glass doors that opened to the waves crashing, a quaint little balcony with the perfect table set for playing cards (and people watching), and an open kitchen for cooking dinner with an ocean view… And it was every bit as wonderful as it sounds!

We checked into our “home” for the weekend and instantly breathed a sigh of contentment. There’s something extra-relaxing about staycations. You’re close to home but far from reality, and you’re able to explore familiar places with a “tourist” lens. We could’ve easily spent our entire weekend enjoying the views from our balcony, but we had sea-doo’s calling our names!

A hop, skip, and a jump away from our rental home (literally across the street) is the friendly team from Balboa Water Sports, who set us up on our sea-doo adventure. We learned the rules as far as speed inside the peninsula (4 MPH or the coast guard will get you!), what to do if the sea-doo eats up too much kelp (jump off and clean it out!), and to keep our eyes open for sea life (seals, dolphins, and whales – oh my!)!

Taking the sea doo around the bay and out into the open sea was quite the adventure, and we couldn’t have picked a more perfect day to do it! The sun was warm, the water was cool, and the sky was crystal-clear. We took in the scenery, flew across the water, and made friends with other boats on the water. The afternoon was something out of a dream… and before we knew it, it was time to head back to shore!

We had a late lunch at Balboa Bar B Que, located on the water, right next to the fun zone. This is one of those restaurants we’ve walked past, but never noticed. Leave it to our Balboa Village “staycation” to introduce us to hidden gems we’ve overlooked for years! This family-run barbecue joint is the real deal, and being self-acclaimed BBQ lovers, that’s saying a lot! No matter what you get you won’t go wrong… but some highlights that we definitely recommend are:


  • The Brisket
  • The Pulled Pork
  • The Mac n’ Cheese
  • The Baked Beans
  • The Crinkle Fries

And this goes without saying, but come hungry. The portions are big, and the flavors are bigger. It’s EXACTLY the kind of lunch you want to have after a day on the open seas!

The rest of our day was spent napping (naps are mandatory after a BBQ feast), playing cards, walking along the pier, and oo-ing and awe-ing over the fiery sunset. Perfect Saturday, if you ask us!

You know that song “Easy like Sunday Morning”? We’re pretty sure it was written about Sunday mornings in Balboa Village. The waves crashing, birds chirping, sun shining… it’s all so peaceful. We spent our morning soaking up the views from our rental, and then walked down the street to grab breakfast at Balboa Lily’s – another restaurant we’ve overlooked!

We’re big breakfast people. It’s our favorite meal, especially on weekends when we have the time to enjoy a slow and leisurely brunch. From the innovative and interactive coffee menu, to the melt-in-your-mouth breakfast specials, to the warm and friendly staff, Balboa Lily’s is just the kind of place you want to spend your Sunday morning. Plan to see us there every weekend… we may have just found our new favorite breakfast spot!

And just like that, our staycation came to an end all too quick! We left Balboa Village with a newfound appreciation and love for this quaint and picturesque beach town. Thank you to Visit Newport Beach for the opportunity to explore an area that we’ve overlooked for far too long… We can’t wait to return!

Written By: Traveling Newlyweds

Written by Visit Newport Beach

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