Balboa Pier: Newport

I do not live in a beach town but as Californians we are required to visit the beach regularly. When others in our environs learn we are headed to the beach they unfailingly ask, “Which beach do you go to?” This is not worded, or meant, as an inquiry to this instance, but rather a broader declaration.

I refuse to declare a beach affiliation.

But we did recently visit Balboa Pier in Newport. It was nice.IMG_4723

“It was nice” is no sort of manifesto. It isn’t even a resounding endorsement. But the place was in fact “nice” and if you please I will now walk backwards into a more meaningful review.

You can park all day for $10.IMG_5719

California doesn’t mess around with those silly beach tags like New Jersey. The beaches are quite literally a “free for all”. Whats not to like about that. Nice, right?IMG_5648

The Pier itself houses the original Ruby’s Diner. Not a culinary powerhouse by any means but an Orange County staple none-the-less. You can eat your burger while sitting on the rooftop deck watching the sun set over the beach. That would make anything taste great no matter who cooked it.IMG_5727

If cold water and waves that break right on the sand aren’t your favorite you can always head for the boardwalk.  There you are treated to arcades, shaved ice, and carnival style rides like a bucking shark. Who doesn’t want to ride a bucking shark?IMG_5591

None of us wanted to ride the bucking shark but we did ride what was marketed as “possibly” the longest Ferris wheel ride in the world. It was indeed lengthy.IMG_5647


With full bellies we were ready to test the scientifically proven tale that one must wait an hour after eating before swimming to avoid certain drowning. We thought it a safe place to test this tale since there were at least 7 million junior lifeguards on the beach for summer camp. I found myself wondering how many 9 year olds it would take to save me if I were to go under for the third time.IMG_5721

Turns out I am too naturally buoyant to find out. No loss. I’m satisfied stating that Balboa Pier in  Newport is Nice.

7 thoughts on “Balboa Pier: Newport

  1. Balboa is our favorite beach! I was expecting to hear about the ferry ride. Did you guys take the ferry over to the island? That’s the best part… It’s about 50 cents a person. You can walk on, skate on, ride a bike or even drive your car on. Sounds like you guys had fun!

  2. Bucking sharks on the pier. As opposed to the biting sharks in the water that our lovely NC beaches seem to have attracted this summer. The warm water is worth it…. I tell myself as I plan another day trip. Trying to figure out how I will let me water babies out into their natural environment without being THAT mom who is too scared to let them have fun.

  3. Oh. My. Goodness. I just figured out why I love the photos of your daughters so much – they make me homesick. (Really.. The pizza photo made me spit out my What-a-Burger. And yes, my fish tacos were good)
    Smog, high cost of living, high crime, ….
    And people wonder why people keep moving to California.

  4. I just read a comment you left on my page from way back in ’09 dealing with breaking stereotypes. You stated that if you were to ever get a job on the coast that you would teach your daughter to surf. Ummm… ?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s