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Camping at the Beach

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Explore, Love the Coasts

We are here to create the ultimate beach experience while inspiring you to explore life our coasts.  We'll connect you with travel guides, lifestyle tips, and so much more.  Whether you live by the coast, or just wish you did, get ready to explore your ultimate life... beachside!

Beach Bar

Updated: Apr 15

The Monterey Peninsula anchors the northern portion of the Central California coast and comprises the cities of Monterey, Carmel, and Pacific Grove, among others. It is most known for The Monterey Bay Aquarium, Pebble Beach Golf Links, Carmel-by-the Sea Village, and Big Sur. The area is also home to many amazing festivals. Below are a few of my favorites worth experiencing this year. Enjoy!

Sea Otter Classic Cycling Festival - April 2023

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Located in Monterey, California, the Sea Otter Classic is the largest gathering of cycling and outdoor enthusiasts in North America and offers nearly every type of competitive bike racing and recreational tours imaginable. Riders zoom around the iconic Laguna Seca Raceway, traverse the beautiful rolling hills of Fort Ord National Monument or take in the gorgeous coastal views along the Pacific Ocean.

The Monterey Wine Festival – June 2023

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Professional chefs from the West Coast challenge themselves to make extraordinary chowders. In the Annual Monterey Wine Festival, restaurants come to pay homage to their own special & customer favorite chowders. Guests can sample these previous award-winning chowders, pick their own personal favorites and simply enjoy cuisine that has become synonymous with Monterey and coastal destinations. Wines that pair with chowders are also available and enhance the celebration even further.

Carmel Bach Festival – July 2023

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Carmel Bach Festival began in 1935 as a four-day series of concerts at the Sunset School Auditorium and the Carmel Mission Basilica. Over the years, it has grown and is currently a two-week series of concerts, recitals, master classes, lectures, and open rehearsals.

The Festival’s mission is to celebrate the works, inspiration, and ongoing influence of J.S. Bach worldwide by immersing audiences in a festival experience integrating music, education and ideas, and by meaningful community engagement throughout the year. Our Vision is to be a world class festival of music and ideas transcending the traditional boundaries of performance and presentation, both at the festival and in communities, and to provide fresh musical contexts that spark the imagination, stimulate the mind and enrich people's lives in multi-faceted ways.

Pebble Beach Concours d’ Elegance – August 2023

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Often said to be the world’s premier celebration of the automobile, Pebble Beach Concours d’ Elegance began in tandem with the Pebble Beach Road Races of 1950. The Concours was a last minute addition – a social gathering meant to add style to the event. In 2022, the charitable event raised a record 2.8 million for charity, bringing their historic giving total to 35 million.

Monterey Jazz Festival - September 2023

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The Monterey Jazz Festival is the longest running jazz festival in the world and is held on the 20-acre oak-studded Monterey County Fairgrounds. Since 1948, the non-profit Monterey Jazz Festival has been committed to celebrating America’s creativity and cultural heritage by presenting legendary jazz musicians, composers and young rising stars.

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Updated: Mar 9

Just south of Oceanside in San Diego's North County is a little must-see beach town called Carlsbad. Founded as a cattle station in 1860, the city was known initially as Frazier Station. It was then renamed as Carlsbad in the 1880.s when the town's mineral waters were found to be similar to those found in Karlsbad in Bohemia. For over a hundred years, people have claimed the health benefits of drinking Alkaline water. Thought to cure chronic diseases, migraines, arthritis, and skin problems, people today travel from as far away as San Francisco to stock up on the water from Carlsbad Alkaline Water's well.

~ Your beach day begins as you make your way onto Carlsbad Village Drive just off the 5 Freeway, south of Oceanside, California. Drive just a few blocks down, and you'll meet rows of little beach shops just waiting to explore. Make sure to stop into the Village Faire in the heart of town to check out Sun Diego Boardshops and their many other shops and cafes. With 36 shops, services, and restaurants, you will be assured of finding something beachy to take home with you.

When appetite hits, make sure to stop into The Coyote Bar and Grill. With live music playing on their outside patio most evenings, Coyote's has become the favored local hangout. Their fire pits are assured to keep you warm on those chilly beach evenings.

After dinner, pick up your sweatshirt and wander down to the ocean's edge. Just a short walk south, and you'll meet wide concrete stairs leading down to a white sandy beach. If you time it right, you'll be greeted by the most amazing golden sunset. Seagulls are often close by to add to your view.

In town, you'll find surfers and beach cruising young people who have stopped into the village for or a quick taqueria taco or for an espresso at the local coffeehouse. When night hits, visitors and locals turn to the town's many restaurants, pubs, and the breweries for their evening entertainment.

If you are in the village on the weekend, make sure to stop into the Daily News Cafe for a delicious brunch or a latte. And then wander down to the Carlsbad Village Art and Antique Mall. If you are in town on Wednesday, plan to visit the village's Farmers' Market.

When branching out from Carlsbad Village, you'll find other points of interest: The Sea Life Aquarium, Batiquitos Lagoon Foundation Nature Center, LEGOLAND, the Museum of Making Music, the Flower Fields at Carlsbad Ranch or the Carlsbad Premium Outlets.

Living in San Diego's North County for even a day or week at a time has become a perfect way to escape my high paced life in Silicon Valley. I try to make the journey once every month or two but in reality, I am sometimes away a bit longer. While down here, I take time to just be present, to slow down enough to be able to sit and feel the sea breeze against my skin. Somehow life just seems.....well, easier down here.

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Updated: Apr 15

Nestled in the heart of Newport Beach, CA, is Balboa Island, a small picturesque beach town that sits in the middle of Balboa Bay. The Island is one of five quaint man-made islands built in the early 1900s. Lots now worth several million dollars sold for as little as $25 in 1906.

Your beach day begins as:

~ you navigate your car from Newport's Jamboree Road over the small bridge that leads you onto Balboa Island's Marine Avenue. You'll be greeted by picturesque shops with colorful awnings that will remind you of days gone by. Take time to browse the tiny boutiques. Or simply stop by Dad's for one of their famous frozen bananas. Relax, take time enjoy the ambiance that makes Balboa Island the unique beach town that it is; a place where the locals are friendly, stopping to chat with their neighbors while walking their dogs or while enjoying their morning coffee from the local café.

Stroll the bay fronts to gain extensive views of the bay, and a peek into the Island's many gardens and homes. If you've been to the Island before you'll notice that opulent McMansions have become standard fare, crowding out the charming bungalows that once inhabited the Island. If you look closely, though, you can still find one or two remaining.

As you find your way down to Agate Street, make sure to take the small ferry over to Balboa's Fun Zone on the Newport Beach Peninsula. The ferry ride is a picturesque 800-foot journey that costs just a dollar (50 cents for kids), still one of the better deals in town!

Make sure you come back to the Island for the Holidays. The Island's homes and boats light up for Newport Beach's annual boat parade and Ring of Lights.

Balboa Island will always hold a special place in my heart as I was lucky enough to live on the Island during my twenties. It was a fantastic place to "grow up." I lived with roommates in a small grey bungalow at the end of Topaz Street. We had a view of the Pavilion, and I never took living there for granted. I always felt like I was on vacation. The Island hasn't changed much, except for the newly built McMansions. In those days, we roller skated and biked on the Bayfront sidewalks. In the summertime, outside kid-friendly movies were shown every Friday night at the end of Collins Street by a local resident every one knew as Larry Lifeguard. Today the locals are still just as friendly. You can always find kids running playfully under the piers along the beaches and people strolling the bay fronts to enjoy the gardens and the views. Balboa Island is a must-see when visiting Orange County. You'll be glad you took the time to stop by.

Where to Eat:

Where to Stay:

Where to Play:

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4462 Sapphire Lane Oceanside, CA 92056


Image by Daniel Abadia
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