Just Outside LA – Laguna Beach

 

20150708_145925 laguna with boug

Kelli’s Take

What if I told you paradise is only one hour south of Los Angeles (traffic willing)? We’ve found it here in Laguna Beach. It’s a place that has been known to bring a tear to my eye and a place for my mind to go when I’m stressed.  Pictured above is a view from the gorgeous Montage Hotel grounds looking down onto Treasure Island beach which has public access. One one of our trips we explored the many tide pools and saw star fish and bright purple sea urchins galore.

Parking is always something to consider.  We have always found easy access to this beautiful beach.  Treasure Island Park is located next to the Montage Hotel. There is street parking on the Coast Highway and parking at Aliso Beach parking lot just below Treasure Island Park.

DSC_0255 seal rock

This view is of seal rock is from Crescent Bay Point Park, the place I first pledged my love for California (and my husband)  Just below this point is the first “secret beach” we knew about in Laguna.  Don’t get me wrong it is public, but you have to know about it and the in and outs of parking in this lovely residential area to make your way down the secret staircase to this cozy swimming beach.

DSC_0114 seal rock

DSC_0122 seal rock 2

 

DSC_0132 crescent bay beach 2

 

DSC_0141 stairs crescent bay

For the past few years we’ve celebrated our anniversary at the historic Hotel Laguna. It’s not the most luxurious hotel, but it does have the only stretch of beach you may have a cocktail and food served to you on a lounge chair with umbrella and towel service on the sand.

DSC_0220 hotel laguna exterior

 

DSC_0189 Hotel laguna cocktail

 

DSC_0215 beach chairs

 

DSC_0194 laguna umbrella

DSC_0214 david laguna

 

20150709_125731 Hotel Laguna

 

DSC_0190 Festival of the masters

Beyond it’s gorgeous shoreline Laguna is know for it’s art. The entire area is filled with art galleries. A highlight in the summer months is The Pageant of the Masters festival which I’ve never been to, but have heard it’s fabulously unique. Actors are painted in theatrical illusions of famous pieces of art. I’m sure you’d have to experience it first hand to realize it’s magic.

DSC_0111 shuttle

After getting a hot tip from a lifeguard we hopped on the FREE trolley and headed down PCH to another beach that would take us to another hidden cove known mostly to locals.  Victoria Beach was our destination and it was so worth the search.

Get off the trolley at Nye’s Place cross the street at Nye’s and curl under the bridge on Victoria Drive.

DSC_0215 victoria st

DSC_0128 Victoria bridge

You’re almost there.  Keep walking through the beautiful beach neighborhood until you come to the staircase at this sign.

DSC_0132 Victoria Beach sign

DSC_0130 top of steps to Victoria beach

 

DSC_0135 steps to Victoria beach bottom

 

DSC_0136 beach scene umbrellas

Which leads to this beach and then to a big surprise!  An ocean “swimming pool” and the Pirate Tower.

DSC_0144 beach girls

DSC_0172 kids in pool 1

DSC_0150 kids in pool at a distance

DSC_0153 kids in pool splash

DSC_0161 pirates tower

DSC_0188 pool

DSC_0204 laguna water

We know how to do Laguna on a budget. We’ve found some great happy hours with wonderful food.  Look for future posts on Laguna restaurants. This was our stop on our way home to LA.  Ruby’s Shake Shack just about Crystal Cove State Park.  Not a bad deal.  A great cheese burger and shake with a view!

DSC_0261 rubys

 

DSC_0260 malt

DSC_0272 sunset rubys

One thought on “Just Outside LA – Laguna Beach

  1. Pingback: Just Outside LA-Carpenteria |

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *