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Your Guide To Beachin’ It Up This Summer

July 6, 2015

Deciding which beach to wander out to in Newport Beach is a much tougher task than it seems, with so many beautiful varying beaches spread all across our Pacific coast the possibilities are seemingly endless and the serene beauty is certainly consistent for every inch of our 10-mile beach spread. Whether you are looking for a casual family beach day by the pier with the kids, or an exhilarating spectacle over at The Wedge, Newport Beach beaches offer it all. Here is the ultimate Summer beach guide to get you outside and having fun in a hurry, all geared toward just what kind of beach day you’re looking for.

Social and Family Friendly Beach Hanging

Big Corona in Corona del Mar State Beach, Corona del Mar
Prepare yourself to either luck out and find parking right on the beach, or brace yourself for the built-in-workout of a walk down and back up the steep grade hill, Corona del Mar is seemingly the perfect beach for people of all ages — families and big groups especially. Big Corona has many attributing factors to it’s popularity. It has long been home to several fire rings for nighttime bonfires and marshmallow roasting. The beach itself is long, leaving room for plenty of people to crash in a spot of their choosing without feeling packed in and overcrowded no matter how hot of a day it is. The waves break offshore, making it an ideal spot for families to easily watch over small children who want nothing other than to spend every spec of daylight building sandcastles, catching sand crabs, and splashing in the shallow water. Parking is paid, though the beach lot drops you off right onto the sand, which is certainly a relief.

Photo Credit: Jon Bilous

Pirate’s Cove, Corona del Mar State Beach, Corona del Mar
A seemingly secret island-like getaway located right off of Ocean Blvd, and technically connected to the popular Big Corona in Corona del Mar State Beach. Shady picnic tables, barbecue grills, and benches on grassy lawns sit right above the rocky climb down to Pirate’s Cove. This seriously small stretch of beach is a great place for kids to explore and play in the waveless water. While the kids play, adults can watch the boats head in-and-out of the harbor, or sneak a view of the impressive wave sets at The Wedge across the way. Separated from it’s bustling big beach neighbor by sandstone rocks, this cove retains a relaxing island atmosphere and a safe place for kids to play.


Balboa Pier/Newport Pier Beaches, Balboa Peninsula
Whether you ride the Balboa Ferry over onto the Balboa Peninsula and head out to the beach surrounding the calm Balboa Pier, or you and the family grab a couple of beach cruisers and head down the paved bike trail to the sociable atmosphere of the bustling Newport Pier, you can expect to have a fun and relaxing beach day where the entire family leaves sun-kissed and satisfied. These beach areas on the Balboa Peninsula are great for families and social meet-ups due to the astonishing varieties of bars, restaurants, and beach rental business that only add to the seamless fun of a beach day in Newport Beach. Paid parking surrounding each pier is plentiful, which makes for an easy transition from beach-bound anticipation to gloriously sun-tanned and sandy.

Balboa Pier, Photo Credit: Eddie Yerkish Photography

Newport Pier, Photo Credit: Ed Olen


Crystal Cove State Beach, Crystal Cove State Park
Beneath a stretch of coastal cliffs bordering the southern edge of Newport Beach lies the Crystal Cove Beach of the Crystal Cove State Park. Lined with quaint little beach cottages, the delicious Beachcomber Cafe and Bootlegger Bar right on the sand, and the beautiful Crystal Cove State Park to wander around and explore, there is pretty much no good reason to not head down to this beach at one point or another. The wide stretching beach and endless activities make this location great for families and social gatherings. Crystal Cove Beach is made up of three areas just below the bluffs: the two-cove accessible Reef Point, the 3.25-mile trail that leads to Pelican Point, and the popular Los Trancos. Just atop the Los Trancos edge of the rocky cliffs is the Ruby’s Shake Shack, serving up perfect beach snacks to it’s visitors until sundown. Down on the sands of Los Trancos, in the historic district, are the famous rustic 1930s style beach homes that now make up the unique cottage rentals that are available to visitors. This beach offers plenty of state park priced parking in various locations, depending on which beach area you wish to explore.

Photo Credit: Suzanne Haggerty

Relaxing and Romantic
Little Corona In Corona Del Mar State Beach, Corona del Mar
The often overlooked little sister to the popular Big Corona State Beach is Little Corona. Tucked away down a windy hill in the far corner of the flower streets of Corona del Mar lies this breathtakingly beautiful little beach. The offshore wave break, explorable rocks, and home to plenty of discoverable tide pools make this beach the perfect place to relax with loved ones and enjoy a slower paced day by the sea. Venture down to Little Corona beach later in the day to catch the unbeatable summer sunset behind silhouetted rock structures. Little Corona’s beauty is widely used as a backdrop for engagement, wedding, prom, and many other prime photo shoots.

12th Street, Balboa Peninsula
This street, and the surrounding street beaches, are particularly relaxing due to their location being south of the bustling pier area. Located right off of the Newport Beach Balboa Peninsula boardwalk, 12th street beach has a long, slim paved walkway stretching out towards the ocean for the majority of the sandy beach. Conveniently located bike racks at the end of the pavement allow for beach cruisers to park their bikes closer to their chosen hangout spot, and the paved walkway creates a less sand-ridden avenue for couples to make their way towards the ocean for a romantic sunset walk by the water. The beaches strewn along this side of the pier remain calm and quiet for the majority of the time, making this string of beaches ideal for those who want to dive into that book you’ve been reading all summer long, nap in the warm sun to the sound of crashing waves, catch a dazzling west-coast sunset, or those who simply desire a less social beach day altogether.

Surf  Spots
Newport River Jetties, Newport Municipal Beach, Balboa Peninsula
If you’re thinking of heading out of Newport Beach to find a good surf spot, think again and make a stop right on the north edge of town bordering Huntington Beach, to surf a local favorite, Newport River Jetties. The consistency of the swell through each season, shallow sand bars, and minimal rocks create the ideal wave break and atmosphere to satisfy any practiced surfer.

54th/56th Street, Newport Municipal Beach, Balboa Peninsula
The surf along the entire Newport Municipal Beach provides a beautiful atmosphere and fun waves for any level of surfer, from beginner to pro. However, the 54th/56th street stretch proves to be a great spot for experienced surfers to enjoy fast, steep drops and consistent waves all year long. Local surfers favor this unmatched surf spot for daily fun, with easy access and plenty of street parking practically on the sand.

Blackie’s, Newport Municipal Beach, , Balboa Peninsula
Blackie’s surf spot is conveniently located just north of the Newport Beach Pier area, with plenty of metered parking just a couple steps from the sand itself. This surf location is the perfect spot for beginners and experienced surfers alike. Blackie’s beach-goers can enjoy the immediate surrounding bars and business to grab a quick lunch or a cold beer before heading back out into the delightfully chilled Pacific Ocean. The approachable wide sandy beach that makes up the Newport Municipal Beach area is an ideal place for any beach activity, from biking and roller skating on the Balboa Peninsula Boardwalk to beach volleyball and sunbathing, creating endless fun for everyone’s unique interests.

The Wedge, Balboa Peninsula
Widely known for it’s powerful shore-breaking waves and awesome surf, for most people the Wedge remains more of a spot to admire than to jump into. However, if you are ready and willing for the true challenge you could find yourself body surfing, body boarding, or surfing a potential 30-foot wave. The summer and fall seasons bring the most impressive high surf, so much so that through the months of May and October a black ball flag is displayed from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. to outlaw any type of board in the Wedge’s waters. Backed by beautiful beach-front homes, boasting a perfect romantic setting to view the sunset, or catch the boats of all sizes come in and out of the harbor, The Wedge remains a must-see destination for surf enthusiasts and curious bystanders alike while in Newport Beach.

Be sure to check out for day-to-day current updates and live web-cam feeds on any Newport Beach surf location before heading out to the water.

While some beaches may be geared more towards surfing, casual sunbathing, family fun, or beach activities, there really is no bad choice. The versatility and beauty in every mile of our Newport Beach beaches creates the unbeatable beach-day for everyone.

Written by Visit Newport Beach

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