VNB Beach 2

This article is sponsored by Visit Newport Beach. Click here to learn more about Newport Beach.

Newport Beach is legendary for its sail studded harbor, excellent dining, world-class shopping and high-end resorts. But beyond the glamour, this beloved OC destination also offers guests a simple chance to kick back and relax amid a pristine, waterfront setting. 

For guests looking to get back to nature Crystal Cove State Park is the ideal place to escape. Located between Newport Beach and Laguna Beach, this rustic hidden gem boasts 3.2 miles of beaches and 2,400 acres of undeveloped woodland, not to mention a perfectly preserved historic district.

Hit The Beach
With three beaches--Reef Point, Pelican Point and Los Trancos--tucked below the bluffs, the Park offers plenty of space to lay out. Grab a board and hit the waves, or head down to Muddy Creek for some excellent body surfing.

Feel like taking a plunge instead? No problem. Crystal Cove State Park also boasts a 1,140 underwater park whose diverse, protected marine life attract avid snorkelers and SCUBA divers. Or you can just stay ashore; with some of Orange County's best tidepools, Crystal Cove State Park's shores brim with exotic marine life like Hermit Crabs, Sea Urchins and even Octopuses.

Explore Moro Canyon
With well over 2,000 acres of undeveloped natural terrain, this chaparral canyon is webbed with 18 miles of hiking, biking and horseback trails. Hit the dirt roads and winding single track trails on your mountain bike, pack a picnic or go for a late afternoon hike and catch the sun setting into the Pacific from numerous vantage points. And if it all feels too magical to leave, pitch a tent at one of the many camping sites and spend the night.

Make it a Martini
Of course just because you're off the beaten path doesn't mean you need to abandon creature comforts and a little sophistication. Amble down the quaint streets of Crystal Cove State Park's historic district, where you'll find 1930s era cottages that were used in classic Hollywood movies (like Bette Midler's Beaches), then head to the Beachcomber Cafe, where you can begin your day just steps from the water with a breakfast of Blueberry Ricotta Pancakes, or cap it with cocktails and locally sourced seafood when the Martini Flag flies at 5 p.m.

For more information on what to see and do in Crystal Cove State Park, as well as stunning Newport Beach, head to

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