Nature High! Beach!

Nature High! Beach!

Are you Bored? Don’t know what to do? Want to explore and experience new places? Or just want a nature high? I got you!

Here are the top 5 places to explore with a beach, feeding your adventurous fuel in the best way possible.

1. Little Corona del mar Beach, Newport Beach 

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  • Street parking available: 214 Hazel Drive, Coronda del Mar

This is a smaller, more secluded beach, but very worthwhile. Luckily this beach, unlike most in Orange County, doesn’t have steps (making it more accessible) but it does include a steep hill down. This beach has a path where you can wheel down any equipment so make sure to bring all your beach necessities. There are public restrooms and showers. The beach itself is surrounded by sandstone cliffs and volcanic tide pools which protect it from swells/surf, making the beach relatively safer given there are fewer waves. Lastly enjoy yout time and explore all you can, there’s lots to find and see.

2. Top of the World, Laguna Beach 

  • Street parking available
  • If planning to Hike park at: 725 Laguna Canyon Road (closest to the trailhead) 
  • If you just want to go to the top/park area, park on: Alta Laguna Blvd 

This is a 2.4 mile, hard effort hike. But on the bright side, you can bring along your furry friend on a leash! The hike may be difficult but definitely pays off in the end. Once you climb up the coastal scrubs you will reach the panoramic view at Top Of the World. From here you can see Catalina Island all the way to Mt. Badly. There are also benches and sitting areas to rest and take the view in. The parking situation here is a bit tricky but the best tip would be to park a few blocks away or even find a metered spot. If hiking doesn’t sound too appealing you can also drive right up to the beautiful view and take a look as well! Whether you love an adventure or prefer to relax and observe, this is just the place for you!

3. Christmas Tree Cove, Palos Verdes 

  • Street parking available: Via Segovia or along Pasea Del Mar 

This cove isn’t a normal beach. Rather than a sandy shroline, you’ll be greeted with stones. This is mostly a suba diving/snorkeling spot but those who love the beach or enjoy to explore will have agreat time looking around and visiting the tide pools that can be found during lowtide on the south side of the cove. The trail that must be taken to go down to the rocky beach is quite steep, so I recommend wearing good shoes and keeping your belongings to the minimum (but with that being said, scuba divers are able to carry all their gear down so maybe you can too, just use extreme caution). You will find the trailhead at the intersection of Paseo Del Mar and Via Neve, street parking available. If sunsets are your thing, I definitely would recommend going to this spot and taking a look, you won’t regret it! 

4. Crescent Bay Beach, Orange County 

  • Street parking available: Near both entrances of the beach 
  • Metered parking available: North Coast Highway

Crescent Bay Beach is quite literally picture perfect. This crescent-shaped beach has high cliffs on both ends. The main public access to the beach is located on Cliff Drive, about one block from where the beach begins at North Coast Highway (Highway 1). A long ramp will be labeled “Authorized vehicles only” and is probably the best walking path which lands you right in the middle of the cove. Tide pools are also available to explore at both ends of the cove during low tide. Swimming is a bit dangerous at this beach due to strong rip currents so if you plan to swim I would recommend wearing fins, but lifeguards are usually there during summer. Parking might be a bit tricky in this neighborhood but if you can’t find parking near the beach, try and search for a spot along the highway and walk down. If getting sandy and wet isnt quite your cup of tea, maybe give Crescent Bay Point Park a try. It is right above the west-side of the beach. It has great views and you’re even able to go whale-watching. Getting the best of both worlds in a single spot!

5. Thousand Step beach (hidden pools), Orange County 

  • Street parking available: Along Shoreline Drive or Santa Cruz blvd 

Don’t worry, it’s not actually 1,000 steps, more like 218 (to be exact). The way down will feel great, but lugging up all your belongings at the end of the day will be harsh, so I recommend packing lightly. This beach is boarded by sandstone cliffs all around. The entrance will be small gate with a sign labeled “Thousand Steps” found north of 9th street. Upon arriving at the beach if you walk south along the shoreline you will be greeted by Laguna’s infamous sea cave. Be sure to keep an eye out for the tide to be sure you’re safe. If you are feeling a bit more adventurous, you should visit the hidden pools. 

To get to hidden pools: 1.) once you arrive at the beach you will turn left and walk  2.) Go through the cave 3.) Climb the rocks infront of you 4.) Bend the rocks at the top of your climb 5.) Go down to the beach on the other side 6.) Cross the beach 7.) Right infront of you should be the magically hidden pools! Getting to this point is dangerous so go at your own risk (all I can say is that it is definitely worth it.)

Have fun exploring! Don’t forget to stay safe.

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