We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Best Beach in Newport Beach

santa cruz
Level Contributor
99 posts
8 reviews
Best Beach in Newport Beach

Hello

we are beach people. We live in Santa Cruz CA, which should say it all. Our family vacations are spent on the Caribbean side of Mexico i.e Tulum, Akumal etc. I'll be in southern California July 31-August 3 visiting family. We are staying in Claremont CA.,nice little town I've visited many times,but way inland for our taste, but hey it's family. We want to spend one good day, all day at the beach, probable that Sunday August 2. Can anyone please recommend a nice beach for us, that is easy to get to, with some waves my son might boogie board and where we can kick back and enjoy some nice beach time. We want to spend a nice day at the beach and I understand Newport Beach is the closest beach to Claremont.

Any and all suggestions are welcome. Thanks

Newport Beach...
Level Contributor
225 posts
2 reviews
21. Re: Best Beach in Newport Beach

I would also suggest El Moro (in Crystal Cove State Park), for reasons that I detail after getting into the interesting debate about what city Crystal Cove is in.

An interesting debate about whether its Laguna or Newport. Obviously its neither because its a state park and is not within either's city limits. The Ranger Station (where the mail is presumably delivered) is up above El Moro and is not within the city limits of Laguna Beach, so the mailing address is not technically accurate -- its probably listed that way because the USPS had to assign them a post office, and probably chose Laguna because its closer to El Moro and there is no post office in CDM.

But, technicalities aside, which city can claim it as their own? I say it depends, but at the present time I think its more Newport than Laguna. El Moro is probably more of a Laguna spot, and there was a time when the cottages might be considered Laguna, but its hard to argue that now since all of the development across the highway is Newport (an interesting fact: if you live in the houses up above Crystal Cove, south of Newport Coast Dr, you can choose whether to send your kids to either Newport or Laguna schools -- even though its in Newport Beach, technically). But, certainly the area north of Newport Coast has always felt more like Newport. I know as a kid growing up in CDM, we would surf Coves (the far north of the park) and it was all CDM people there and we certainly did not feel like we were in Laguna Beach (unlike El Moro, where we would give the Laguna surfers some deference). Even Scothman's Reef, which is between El Moro and the cottages, was really a CDM spot. Whether on the sand, or in the water, it was mostly people from Newport.

I think most people see Crystal Cove as a part of Newport Coast now -- its hard not to when 90% of the park is adjacent to Newport Coast. The Shake Shack, and the Beachcomber list Newport Coast as their address, while the cottage rentals list a Newport Beach address. I think this is reflective of the fact that its more connected to Newport Beach now than Laguna Beach.

Okay, now to why I think the OP should go to El Moro on his beach day:

There are nice facilities there (showers, bathrooms, snack bar, parking, lifeguard). Its a gorgeous setting, and can actually be pretty quick to get to, if you take 73 and get off on Newport Coast Drive. The cliff at the south end of the beach, and the curving coast and bluffs to the north makes it very picturesque.

I think its a better choice than either Balboa or Newport Pier. First, its easy access. You don't have to fight traffic getting on and off the Peninsula. Second, it generally won't get as crowded as other spots in Newport and Laguna (in part because of the $15 parking, and in part because its not as well known to tourists). Newport Pier is an absolute zoo during the summer. The beach is not very wide around the Newport pier, and at times it can fill up quickly and is hard to find a quiet stretch of sand. Same with the Balboa pier. Also, the parking can be very tough during the summer. Also, Balboa Pier can be more of a shore break, which can be tough for boogie boarding for young kids, and the area around the Newport Pier does not catch south swells very well, so is often pretty flat during the summer.

El Moro catches south swells nicely and is not a shorebreak like Balboa, so should be good for boogie boarding.

The around Crystal Cove also often is clearer than it is on the Peninsula (it even can look downright tropical on the right days).

Corona del Mar...
Destination Expert
for San Diego, Orange County, California
Level Contributor
59,269 posts
435 reviews
22. Re: Best Beach in Newport Beach

>>>o the mailing address is not technically accurate -- its probably listed that way because the USPS had to assign them a post office, and probably chose Laguna because its closer to El Moro and there is no post office in CDM.<<<

Say what?? The USPS in CdM is alive and well thank you.

http://tinyurl.com/obj3rlo

El Morro is okay, but the facilities are across Coast Highway and not easy to find the entrance for a novice.

A very large chunk of Crystal Cove State Park does lie within the city limits of Newport Beach ever since the city annexed the Newport Coast. Laguna Beach city limits does start at Irvine Cove (and oddly skips Emerald Bay), but El Morro Elementary, north of the El Morro section of CCSP, is part of the Laguna Beach USD.

>>> if you live in the houses up above Crystal Cove, south of Newport Coast Dr, you can choose whether to send your kids to either Newport or Laguna schools -- even though its in Newport Beach, technically)<<<

Doesn't matter..... Newport Coast people send their kids to Harbor Day and The Sage School :)

San Diego...
Destination Expert
for San Diego
Level Contributor
22,219 posts
4 reviews
23. Re: Best Beach in Newport Beach

<< its probably listed that way because the USPS had to assign them a post office, and probably chose Laguna because its closer to El Moro and there is no post office in CDM.>>

There is a Post Office in CDM on Orchid. I lived on Orchid for about, eek, don't remember exactly about about 5 or 6 yrs. Cute, tiny little place. All the workers knew all the neighbors.

uspspostoffices.com/ca/…corona-del-mar

I will say that unless the OP gets there before 10:00 ish the PCH South of CDM the traffic can be intense. The Art Festivals open at 10:00 am. So getting to Crystal Cove, El Moro, Laguna it's important to get there early, IF that's where you decide to go.

Newport Beach...
Level Contributor
225 posts
2 reviews
24. Re: Best Beach in Newport Beach

I totally forgot about that little USPS office!! Thanks for reminding me!!

25. Re: Best Beach in Newport Beach

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This topic has been closed to new posts due to inactivity. We hope you'll join the conversation by posting to an open topic or starting a new one.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

We remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason.

Removed on: 01 August 2016, 16:18