We’re Southern Californians, so naturally we can attest to our state’s killer coastline, with its miles of phenomenal beaches and truly rad surf spots. In honor of the Vans US Open of Surfing (July 23-31st), we were inspired to take a closer look at contest location, Huntington Beach, and how this charming seaside community supports their righteous claim as Surf City USA.
Check In | Pasea Hotel and Spa
Home away from home is the Pasea Hotel and Spa. Awesome views and steps from the beach and ocean swells, this hotel knows surfing- and they have a Surf Butler on staff to prove it. Wave report…check…lessons…check…chairs, towels, umbrellas…they’ve got you covered. After your surf lesson, relax and unwind at the Aarna Spa. From traditional treatments to meditation and yoga classes, the classic SoCal lifestyle is yours for the taking. Not a fan of sand in your toes? Frolic in the seaside pool where you can still hear the crashing waves of the Pacific. Won’t travel without your pooch? Your friend Fido will feel right at home alongside, Moonshine, the hotel’s French Bulldog Pet Concierge.
Cocktails (and good eats) With a View
Tanner’s at Pasea offers the perfect indoor/outdoor cocktail and dining experience with a SoCal-centric menu. Inside there’s a wood-fire inferno grill and a glass enclosed exhibition kitchen, but our sights are set on the outdoor patio, where views of the Pacific dominate. And if the marine layer rolls in, or June gloom sticks around past July, our sandstone Kindle Living outdoor heaters will keep you warm and cozy. After hours?? Head upstairs to the Treehouse Lounge for seasonal cocktails crafted by an award-winning mixologist. Up here our white-on-white Bella outdoor heaters perfectly compliment this already super chic outdoor space.
Catch a Wave
Hoping to hang 10 by noon? With a moniker like Surf City USA, there’s no shortage of surf schools along the coast. Surfriders Academy specializes in first-time beginner lessons that are fun, safe and memorable.
There are so many incredible surf shops founded and/or run by Huntington Beach local legends. Here are just a few.
Chuck Dent Surfboards. The late surfer’s company slogan says it all, “Offending since 1963”.Is that a dare? We’ll take it!
Sakal Surfboards. This family run shop specializes in boards that are designed and hand-shaped on site.
Katin Surf Shop. This is one of America’s oldest surf shops and is widely credited with inventing that surf-wear staple, the board short.
Build a Bonfire
Huntington Beach is home to 10 miles of uninterrupted beaches with over 500 permanent bonfire rings, available and free to the public. Grab a stick and some marshmallows and enjoy an evening under the stars.
Who’d have thought? Sunset Gondola offers tours through Huntington Harbour on authentic Venetian gondolas, with traditionally trained gondoliers. BYOB and snacks, and they provide the cups, ice, and blankets.
If you’re more bird-watcher than wave-catcher, check out The Huntington Beach Wetlands Conservatory, which owns and is restoring 118 acres of local wetlands. There are four active restorations sites, with the Talbert Marsh boasting a multipurpose trail through 25 acres, and a bird sighting count of 75.