Marina Park Playground with lighthouse
Today we’d like to present you with an awesome, one of a kind playground in Orange County – the Lighthouse playground in the Newport Beach. It is a well designed playground with plenty of “pay for parking” spots nearby. The Coolest feature of the park is of course the two story tall Lighthouse slide!
There’s also a small playground nearby which features a bunch of entertainment pieces that kids would go nuts for. As a cherry on top – there’s also a beach immediately adjacent to the lighthouse, the water cleanliness is questionable though, since the Newport Bay harbors a lot of huge boats with a run off.
So we’d still recommend swimming on the other half of the peninsula – the one facing the Ocean.
Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade
What we really enjoyed doing past year – was hanging out at the playground on an evening in December waiting for decorated boats to entertain us with all the spectacular lights. After a few hours of hanging out by the Marina Park Playground we saw only a couple of boats pass by.
Perhaps we simply didn’t wait the entire time. For schedule – check out the official Charismas boats parade for an in-depth info and display times. The Boat procession date is December 18 – 22, for 2019.
What else is there to do at New Port Beach?
If you’re visiting the New Port Peninsula for the first time, we would highly recommend heading to the Balboa Beach Play Area. The Location features a sweet swing set, a climbing wall and a playground for kids – which translates for a good hour of relaxation for parents while your toddler runs back and fourth after the waves. The scenic pier will make for great family Vacation photo. The Balboa pier area seems extremely tranquil, pleasant and simply relaxing.
Older kids might enjoy a whale watching excursion with parents. Perhaps you could take out kayaks, either at a place near the marina park Lighthouse or a little bit further by the Balboa Pier.
A small ferry carrying a couple of cars and a few passengers take visitors to the Balboa Island (which technically is connected to the mainland by a road making it more of a peninsula… nevertheless…) Our son loved taking a boat for some ice cream on an island.
The island also features small “private” beaches and a few stores. Many owners seem to attempt to outdo each other in classiness of lavish outdoor decorations. In reality its a display that will definitely invoke some type of emotion from the onlookers.
At the Balboa Pavilion you may take a Catalina Flyer all the way to the Santa Catalina Island. I had a great time camping at the Two Harbors location. The Ferry from Newport beach however goes to Avalon.
There’s a fantastic well-priced “Bear Flag” restaurant with quality sea food located immediately at the exit from the peninsula, making it ideal to have a brunch after spending a morning by the Ocean.