Two Romantic Sea Side Destinations

When folks think of Southern California, images of Disneyland, Hollywood, and San Diego commonly come to mind. That’s changing as more and more Californians are discovering two hidden gems which both compliment any trip to visit Southern California but who also stand alone as the perfect couples getaway of sand and sea.

Courtesy of Huntington Beach Marketing and Visitors Bureau

No better coastal destination exists on the west coast than Huntington Beach, (Surf City USA) and Redondo Beach where a historic pier, dazzling harbor, glistening beaches, and award winning restaurants are just the appetizer.

Both sister seaside towns with their own distinct flavors and charms offer an endless supply of activities and interest for vacationers.

Active and fitness conscious couples love that Redondo Beach’s four marinas can be accessed easily on foot where top attractions include, the S.E.A. Laboratory, the Redondo Beach Pier, famous murals, Veteran’s Park, The Esplanade, and the Riviera Village Shopping District, all peppered by outdoor cafes, spectacular boutiques, antique shops, and interesting galleries. What’s more the South Bay Bicycle Trail originates at the south end of town and meanders 19 beautiful coastal miles to Santa Monica.

Of interest to couples who simply cannot fathom leaving their furry companions at home, Redondo Beach dog visitors even have their very own dog park.

One of Redondo Beach’s crown jewels is the amazing Redondo Beach Performing Arts Center. Nearly two thousand excellent seats provide an opportunity for visitors from all over the world to enjoy critically acclaimed musical and theatrical productions, and legendary musical artists, all in the largest and grandest musical theater in Southern California.

S.E.A. Lab is a must see with its marine educations center, touch tanks, hands on, and fascinating local marine life exhibits. Other Redondo favorites include the Ocean Racer high speed boat ride, the SSV Looking Glass 19-passenger USCG inspected semi submersible underwater viewing boat, paddle boating, ocean kayaking, whale watching, and sport fishing.

A great way to see the city’s highlights are by boarding the Disco Metro where owner Tom Kearney says, “When the bus is moving, so are you.” This fun-loving, disco era themed, tour bus is the ultimate in a unique blend of wackiness and class for getting around both towns. Kearney’s also building a Tiki bus and Pirate bus; both are coming soon. You won’t want to miss them; the experience is unforgettable.

A new highlight in town is the recently opened Toy Box where visitors can rent everything from a handmade Maybach automobile to jet skis.

Dining in Redondo Beach runs the gamut from casual pier side dining at Ruby’s where malt shop favorites, 1940’s style, are served up homemade and with fresh healthy ingredients, to the friendly yet exquisite cuisine at BALEENlosangeles, the Portofino Hotel and Yacht Club’s own signature restaurant where elegance and ambiance flirt for your attention.

Another dining and lodging option is the centrally located Crowne Plaza Redondo Beach and Marina Hotel, right across from Seaside Lagoon offering a heated saltwater swimming pool. There is a fantastic restaurant on property and don’t forget the spa!

A favorite lunch spot to whet your appetite while strolling the Riviera Village is H.T. Grill, where the locals and visitors frequent.

Courtesy of Huntington Beach Marketing and Visitors Bureau

The Hyatt Huntington Beach just minutes down the road, offers a destination with the perfect spot from which to explore all Huntington Beach has to offer with its eclectic dining, miles of nature sanctuaries and biking trails, dog beaches, and shopping. The Hyatt leaves no stone unturned where couples can build a bonfire on the premises and order up a complete gourmet s’mores kit for a great fire pit treat. Kids at heart can take a sandcastle building class. Or why not try your hand at kite flying or surfing—you can take lessons or try on your own. Huntington Beach is famous for surfing, so why not make history.

The Hyatt’s Pacific Waters Spa with its 20,000 square feet of pure bliss and pampering, offers an incomparable relaxation oasis.

Take a pedicab or rent bicycles and jump right on the strand where the action lies and don’t forget to check out dining favorites like Sugar Shack Café that’s been serving up locals’ favorite breakfasts and lunches since 1967. Awesome homemade pancakes are a specialty.

No trip would be complete without a visit to Duke’s, Pete’s Sunset Grille, or Shades for the ultimate dining experience where culinary masterpieces are created by award winning Chef Jeff Littlefield.

On the more casual, fun but romantic, laid-back menu you’ll love the food and the ambiance at Sandy’s Beach Grill in Huntington Beach. The organic salmon with leeks, pork lettuce wraps, seafood cocktail, and fun desserts, will make it a special lunch or dinner.

For romantic Redondo Beach dining and the freshest, highest quality seafood around you”ll want to stop in Bluewater Grill where outstanding service and legendary hospitality coupled with an oyster bar, patio dining and full bar make this a wonderful experience.

No matter when you visit, be sure to include sunscreen, a light jacket, walking shoes, sunglasses and a sun hat. With a temperate Mediterranean climate and low annual precipitation, both towns offer a fantastic place to escape bitter cold winters and hot and humid summers. With weather seldom an issue, both towns are attractive destinations year round, with the best travel deals often found in the fall and winter months. Be sure to ask both the Portofino Hotel and Yacht Club and the Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach about specials and packages they offer frequently.

The Hilton Waterfront Beach Resort in Huntington Beach (Surf City USA) provides a wonderful option where you’ll want to allow time for a romantic bike ride along the beach or even a surfing lesson. The gorgeous grounds and pool will lure you to a rendezvous overlooking the bay.

Less than an hour away, you’ll find all the famous Southern Cal attractions. So there’s no excuse not to visit on your way to one of them. Or plan a trip just to visit either of these fantastic beach towns, on their own or together, the next time you have a few days for the perfect vacation of sun, sea, and surf.

Both Redondo Beach and Huntington Beach are only a half an hour from LAX airport. Be sure to explore these two coastal gems of Southern California.