Archive for July, 2012

Newport Beach, California’s Orange County Gem

Wednesday, July 4th, 2012

Newport Beach Travel Deals


Just south of Los Angeles, California, you’ll find Newport Beach, a vibrant coastal community in the heart of the prestigious Orange County.  Newport Beach makes for the perfect California beach vacation.  Enjoy idyllic California beaches and breathtaking seaside cliffs.  Boasting the only harbor in Orange County and one of the largest recreational harbors on the U.S. West Coast, there are plenty of activities and attractions to choose from.  Celebrities and historical figures such as Jay Leno, John Wayne, Shirley Temple, and Kobe Bryant have taken up homes in Newport Beach.  Newport Beach is conveniently located near Orange County’s John Wayne Airport, or easily visited from the nearby Los Angeles International Airport.

Newport Beach is a paradise for beach-goers and is named one of the cleanest beaches in the United States.  Newport Beach offers 10 miles of ideal beaches for surfing, body boarding, swimming, sunbathing, and family fun.  The coastline features spectacular views, soft white sand and perfect waves.  Popular local beaches include Corona del Mar State Beach, Crystal Cove State Beach, Newport’s Balboa Peninsula, and along the famous Pacific Coast Highway to the north. The beaches between the Newport and Balboa Piers offer a great California beach and surfer scene.  You will find plenty of expert surfers to watch at “The Wedge,” a local big-wave surfing spot.

Newport Beach provides a multitude of activities for your travel experience.  Choose from water sports like surf lessons, kayaking, or take a sunset dinner cruise.  The area offers plenty of live entertainment, arts and cultural venues, harbor-front promenades, a year-round calendar of concerts, sporting events, film festivals, boat parades, and food & wine tastings.  The local Newport Aquatic Center offers the public unique opportunities to try the water sports of rowing, canoeing, kayaking and outrigger canoe competition.  Another popular attraction for locals and tourists is the family-friendly Balboa Fun Zone, one of California’s last historic coastal amusement facilities.  At the Fun Zone you can ride the waterfront Ferris Wheel, eat great beach food, play games in the arcade or visit the Newport Harbor Nautical Museum.  In this area you can also rent beach-cruiser bikes, kayaks, paddle boards, Segways, skateboards, boats, take a harbor cruises, or take a ferry to nearby Catalina Island for the day.  A popular spot for visitors is Balboa Island, a tiny island in the middle of Newport Bay.  The island provides a quaint mix of boutiques, galleries, and specialty shops offering apparel, accessories, artwork, and gifts.  The main island street, Marine Avenue, offers plenty of shopping.  The surrounding beach and board-walk is a great place to take a stroll, or enjoy a nice meal while viewing the boats going by on the water.  

Many of the water-front restaurants around the harbor offer “dock & dine” services, where a valet will assist you with docking and disembarking your boat for your restaurant.  You can locally rent small easy-to-operate electric boats around the harbor at sunset and simply cruise it to your dinner reservation.  As an alternative dining experience, try a romantic private Gondola ride in the bay.  You can enjoy your gourmet dinner at your own floating waterfront table.  Looking for a bigger boat for your dinner cruise?  Hornblower Cruises offers popular public gourmet dining cruises with music, dancing and wonderful views.  They also offer a popular Sunday champagne brunch cruise.  More of a land lover?  For fresh Pacific-caught seafood, in the historic Balboa Pavilion you can get a table at the popular Crab Cooker, Bear Flag Fish Company, The Cannery Restaurant or The Harborside Restaurant.

For the golfer, Orange County has a fine collection of ocean-view golf courses that put Orange County on Golf Digest’s list of the 50 greatest golf destinations in the world.  Enjoy year-round golfing at your choice of either the Monarch Beach Golf Links, Coyote Hills Golf Course, Tustin Ranch Golf Club, Strawberry Farms Golf Club, San Juan Hills Golf Club, Anaheim Hills Golf Course or the Aliso Creek Golf Course.  For the shopper in the family, in the heart of Newport Beach you’ll find Fashion Island, a premier coastal shopping and dining destination with panoramic ocean views and towering palm trees.  Fashion Island features prestigious department stores like Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom, and Bloomingdale’s, as well as specialty boutiques like Kate Spade and Juicy Couture.  Fashion Island offers more than 30 dining options, including Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse and Roy’s Hawaiian Fusion Cuisine.

Here are VoyageMonkey’s recommended hotels for your stay in Newport Beach.  Along the ocean front you’ll find the 4-Star Balboa Bay Club & Resort, which includes spacious guest rooms, individual patios or balconies, heated swimming pool, whirlpool, and a full-service, 17,000-square-foot spa. If you’re looking for great views of the Pacific Ocean and nearby islands of Balboa, Lido, and Catalina, the 20-story Island Hotel Newport Beach awaits you.  This 295-room hotel with splendid amenities and guest rooms offers private balconies with garden, back bay, or coastal views. Amenities include a fully equipped spa and two outdoor lighted tennis courts.  If you are a fan of Fairmont Hotels, then the Fairmont Newport Beach welcomes you.   The Fairmont offers 440 luxury guest rooms, including 54 exquisite suites, state of the art fitness center and full-service spa, a heated sky pool and deck.  Another pick is the popular Hyatt Regency Newport Beach, which is situated on 26 beautifully landscaped acres in the heart of the Newport Beach’s best shopping, dining and entertainment venues. can provide your flight, hotel accommodations and rental car for your travels to Newport Beach.  Click here for easy online travel booking that makes it simple and affordable to visit this fun Southern California beach destination.