How To Enjoy The Sweet Escape: Laguna Beach, CA

Updated July 2019: This isn’t the first time I’ve written about Laguna Beach. Honestly, I wish I could write about it every week from Laguna Beach.  In between jobs, I treat myself to a few days of relaxation in Laguna. To start the trip off right, I rented one of the best cottages from Airbnb at an extremely affordable price tag off season - it’s about double during summer. Yes, it helps it was early in the week and not weekend in March, but that's a great way to save money in Laguna. The precious, green cottage set the tone right from the start: chill, charming, and sun kissed.

Sunset from my Airbnb

Sunset from my Airbnb

Laguna Beach is an easy drive down from Los Angeles or up from San Diego.  If you are flying in, it’s accessible from Orange County Airport or Long Beach (LAX if you need be). It can be a budget breaker at the Ritz or Montage or budget friendly at the numerous inns, home shares and hotels along the coastal highway. If you make it down in the summer, Laguna Beach hosts multiple artsy options like the Sawdust Art Festival, Festival of Arts and Pageant of the Masters, and Art A Fair. More here

Here’s a quick little itinerary for a few days in Laguna Beach

Day 1

Check into your hotel or Airbnb

Grab essentials at the country’s quaintest Whole Foods Market on Broadway

Enjoy a late lunch at Sapphire Laguna or The Cliff (overlooking the beach)

Hit up a local beach and enjoy the sunset

Cook in at your Airbnb or grab dinner locally like at Three Seventy Common

 

Day 2

Wake up and grab some coffee and breakfast at the Orange Inn

Stroll the shops and numerous art galleries on Forest Ave including the National Geographic art gallery (one of four in the country)

Watch the surfers from your closest beach or take a lesson yourself

Ceviche, chips and guac at the roof deck of La Casa Del Camino with a few rounds of margaritas. To note, do not stay at this hotel but enjoy its roof deck views and cocktails. I recently stayed at the hotel to give it a try. Sadly, this hotel is outdated, musty, and had one of the world’s most ancient spring mattresses. It’s a major fail. If you want a hotel in the vicinity with a balcony on the beach not too expensive, try the Surf and Sands.

Head to West Street Beach to enjoy afternoon sunshine and take in the sunset from the boulder

Taco dinner at Taco Loco followed by local bar hopping ending with more Taco Loco tacos

 

Day 3

Breakfast at home

Optional massage at the Ritz or Montage (Cheaper option, download JOIFUL or Soothe massage app and have therapist come in house at a fraction of the cost)

Snap a photo of the St Francis by the Sea church (the second tiniest church in the world) and at Wyland’s Whaling Wall (with porpoises) at 509 South Coast Highway

Tour the Laguna Art Museum

Lunch on the beach - There is the most quaint Whole Foods in the area too for quick grab and go’s

Summer stroll through Pageant of the Masters if you are in town during its run

Head back home sun kissed but a little sad