Fun things to do in Newport Beach

  • Big Edwards Newport movie theater, Newport Beach
    Big Edwards Newport movie theater,...
    by marinarena
  • inside Fashion Island shop, Newport Beach, CA
    inside Fashion Island shop, Newport...
    by marinarena
  • Crystal Cove, Newport Beach, California
    Crystal Cove, Newport Beach, California
    by marinarena

Most Viewed Things to Do in Newport Beach

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    Join the Movie-going Frenzy during Film Festival !

    by marinarena Updated Feb 2, 2013

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    Newport Beach Film Festival

    There is Hollywood- and then there in Newport Beach. If you ask locals here where they would rather be or live, between these two choices, the latter would be more popular of a choice- hands down! Hollywood, even with its rich, exclusive part being Hollywood Hills does not compare to the landscape of Newport Beach. After all, NB does have the coastline!

    While the landscape differs, these two cities both do have something more in common: the love of films. While Hollywood shows its love for motion spictures ith its robust industry, Newport Beach throws an acclaimed film festival in spring. If you are an inspiring filmaker, you may want to consider having your work reviewed and shown here as stepping stone to Hollywood.

    In 2005, Crash- the compelling 2006 Oscar winning drama with Sandra Bullock had early viewing here. Independent films of various genres- full lengths, shorts, documentaries, foreign language films, etc- are welocomed and celebrated by discerning film buffs.

    Showings are housed throughout the city-in venues such as the Orange County Museum of Art (OCMA), Fashion Island's Edwards theaters (The "Big" Newport Edwards pictured) and Lido Theater.

    Big Edwards Newport movie theater, Newport Beach
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    • Festivals
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    • Luxury Travel

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    Come to Crystal Cove for Nature & Intimacy

    by marinarena Updated Oct 2, 2012

    Crystal Cove is due south in Newport Coast, nestled between the main Newport beach area and Laguna Beach. The cove area includes the Pacific coastline, quaint beach cottages and a park well suited for hiking and cycling.

    Beach- gorgeously cliff-lined, clean, walkable featuring informative signs that guide visitors and inform on local nature and bird wildlife facts

    Cottages- very popular, hard to book and quaint, which means basically cute but cramped. Many who have stayed that complain of the lack of luxury but they were not built to be Ritz-Carlton rooms.

    park-2,00+ acres of wildland. Perfect for strolls, jogging, running and horseback riding.

    For nearby food options, the Beachcomber Cafe and Ruby's restaurant are both good options for visitors

    Crystal Cove, Newport Beach, CA Crystal Cove, Newport Beach, California sign at Crystal Cove, CA off the Pacific Ocean Crystal Cove park area, Newport Beach, CA bird, Crystal Cove, Newport Beach, CA
    Related to:
    • National/State Park
    • Hiking and Walking
    • Beaches

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    Spend, spend at Fashion Island

    by marinarena Updated Aug 2, 2012

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    Fashion Island,the most posh outdoor mall in Orange County (apologizes to South Coast Plaza, but you have a Sears!) is a must stop for shopping and seasonal sight-seeing. It is not surrounded by water but minutes from the coast and nevertheless isolated and gorgeous.

    I don't recommend shopping here if you are a bargain hunter. High-end department stores like Bloomingdale's and Neiman Marcus reign here along with dozens of luxury retailers. Mind you, this is a Newport Beach! However not every shop is not upscale here. There are some affordable options, namely at Forever 21.

    More tips on Fashion Island to come in my Shopping and General Tips!

    Fashion Island court( mall), Newport Beach palm trees in Newport Beach, California Fashion Island koi pond, Newport Beach, CA Fashion Island, Newport Beach, California inside Fashion Island shop, Newport Beach, CA
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    Visit the Lido

    by marinarena Updated Jul 7, 2012

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    Here is a very peaceful spot for a simple walk. The Lido is a tiny village of Newport Beach. To live around here (or in any part of NB) is quite costly but anyone can take pleasure here. There are some dining options here at the marina but I usually opt to dine just outside of the marina or neighboring Costa Mesa. There are a few luxury shops here as well as the Lido Diner, Z Pizza (great pizza here) and a Pavilions market (good for picking up items for a picnic).

    As for entertainment, stop here to see a movie at the Lido Theater. Usually, the films that have showtimes here are of the independent/art variety, which is wonderful for discerning film fans. Thankfully, there are enough movie goers who like the intimacy of this kind of old theater.

    Parking is ample here and (wow) it's really free!

    Lido area of Newport Beach, California pretty old town Newport Beach, California historic Lido Theater (cinema), Newport Beach, USA near downtown Newport Beach, California plaza area, Newport Beach (Lido), CA
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    • Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
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    Walk along P.C.H. in Corona del Mar

    by marinarena Written Nov 7, 2011

    From approximately the intersection of East Coast Highway (P.C.H.) and MacArthur Blvd to Coast/Hazel Dr, enjoy quaint Corona del Mar by foot. The journey is reminiscent of the beach boardwalk. What will be appreciated along the way are cozy cafes, fine dining establishments, high-end fashion (inlcuding a few consignment stores that are not quite outrageously expensive) and sight of cute doggies prancing about. Off Coast Hwy, there are signs pointing to beach access, which is about 10 min+- of a walk away.

    Related to:
    • Women's Travel
    • Beaches
    • Family Travel

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    Explore the Main beach

    by marinarena Written Aug 10, 2011

    The main (municipal) beach of Newport is a must-see as it is beautifully edged with cliffs, vast in shore area and features a fun, active boardwalk.

    Parking is ample and rather spread out along PCH. Many metered options are available, parking in neighborhoods can be rather restricted.

    cliffs at Newport Beach (main beach) Newport Beach scene, CA Newport Beach, CA homes by the beach, Newport Beach, CA Newport Beach boardwalk, CA
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    Be the Captain of your own ship

    by jenn_d Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    One thing that my friends and I have enjoyed for ages is renting Duffy Electric boats and setting out for an evening cruise. These boats remind me a bit of the Jungle Cruise boats at Disneyland- even more so if the captain is crazy. Each boat has a table in the center, a fridge, and a CD. We pack our own food and wine and then head off into the sunset.

    Boats can hold between 8-12 people. You can even dock them at most of the bayside restaurants.

    Cruisin in Style
    Related to:
    • Sailing and Boating

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  • The Wedge

    by gos4it Updated Oct 23, 2010

    When a strong south swell is running, the Wedge is the "E-ticket" place to watch unbelievable boogie boarding, body surfing and board surfing with waves double overhead and sometimes larger. Bring your camera and catch the spectacle. If you want a double treat, stop at the Crab Cooker on Balboa Blvd and get a bowl of clam chodder and a loaf of bread--then you can feast while you "ooh and aah" over the many unbelievable rides and wipeouts.

    Related to:
    • Surfing
    • Food and Dining

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    Whale Watching

    by jenn_d Updated Feb 4, 2007

    Whale Watching tours aren't available year round. Gray whales migrate along the California coast from Jan through April. We went out a bit too early in the season and were able to see tons of dolphins and sea lions instead.

    There are several tour companies down at the Balboa Pavilion. We chose the 2.5 hr cruise from Davy's Locker. Tickets are on a first come first serve basis..but you can reserve ahead for groups.

    We met people from all over the world on our tour.

    Risso Dolphins
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    Body Surf until Your Drop

    by Kbird009 Written Jun 8, 2005

    Newport is the beach. People come here to sun in the sand and to surf. One place is at the Wedge, which it actually in Balboa at the tip of Newport. It is where 2 tides meet and create a wedge which is awesome for surfing, and body boarding. I am not talented enough for this so I just stay in the little waves and body surf. Bring some friends and you will have the time of your life.

    Chillin with the fishes
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  • Check out "The Wedge"

    by gos4it Updated Apr 11, 2005

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    In the summer when the surf is pumping, check out the world famous Wedge to see the most awesome waves and fearlesss surfers in the area. Stop by the Crab Cooker and get some clam chodder to go then head to the end of Balboa penisula (find a place to park in the residential area) then follow the mob to the beach. It is definitely an "E ticket" experience of Orange County.

    Related to:
    • Surfing

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    Lay back and RELAX

    by freespirit13 Updated Nov 4, 2002

    The last day of my August 2002 trip to California, before heading to the airport, I needed to go to the beach. So, Newport being on the way from Thousand Oaks to LAX airport, I got to the beach. This was a very nice beach, especially considering I would think a beach so close to a port would be dirty.

    The waves were perfect for bodysurfing, the water was super salty, like any ocean water, but that's okay. When your eyes hurt too much, you can go on the rocks that go in the water. If you go to the complete end, sit on the last part where it's dry, you can wait for that huge wave that breaks and splashes all over. Aaahhh! Gotta love Mother Nature!

    A taste of the waves

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    Vistit Balboa Island. I like...

    by jrjohnson Updated Aug 24, 2002

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    Vistit Balboa Island. I like to ride with 'the Captain' on his duffy. The vessel is very sea worthy.
    It is a nice little island with lots of houses. There is a ferry that goes between the island and the peninsula. It is a nice tourist attraction.

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    Christmas in Newport

    by jadam Written Jan 9, 2007

    Outdoor mall, perfect for shopping in sunny california.
    Variety of department stores and street hawkers.

    Related to:
    • Family Travel

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Newport Beach Hotels

  • Bay Shores Peninsula Hotel

    1800 West Balboa Boulevard (Formerly Bay Shores Inn), Newport Beach, California 92663, United States

    Satisfaction: Excellent

    Good for: Solo

  • The Resort at Pelican Hill

    22701 Pelican Hill Road South, Newport Beach, California, 92657, United States

    Satisfaction: Excellent

    Good for: Business

    Hotel Class 5 out of 5 stars

  • Marriott's Newport Coast Villas

    23000 Newport Coast Drive, Newport Beach, California, 92657, United States

    Satisfaction: Excellent

    Good for: Business

    Hotel Class 4.5 out of 5 stars

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Newport Beach Things to Do

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