Why a pitstop in California’s Surf City is ideal when you’re wearied of Venice Beach and Los Angeles


It was when we were bobbing along on a Venetian gondola in California that we unexpected realised it was all a small surreal. 

Surf City, or Huntington Beach as it’s strictly called, had strictly astounded me.

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On a brief, 36-hour array stop by a strand town, we managed to squeeze in a bucketload of things – a nightfall gondola float being one of them.

So if you’re looking to try a California coast, and you’ve tired Venice Beach and a customary Los Angeles spots, here’s what we should do in Surf City.


A conformation of a masculine surfer using to locate a final waves of a day during Sunset during Southern California's Huntington Beach. The Wharf is in a background
(Picture: Getty)

The waters were a small nippy for me (around 14 degrees Celsius) but don’t let my docility put we off. The sea, notwithstanding being chilly, was writhing with surfers.

Surf City boasts one of a best stretches of seashore for a sport.

There are dozens of roller schools charity lessons, from day and week-long courses.

And if you’re penetrating to get a cut of some tip roller action, a annual Vans Open Surf competition will be holding place July 29 to Aug 6.

More than 700,000 people and 300 universe category athletes are set to flow into a balmy SoCal beach town.

Along with a brew of roller contests, there will also be strain performances and other comfortable continue activities on offer.

Beach time

hungtindon beach
(Picture: Sadie Whitelocks)

The beach is right on your doorstep during Surf City, no matter where we stay.

The city is famous for being a tip mark for beach volleyball, so we can exam out some of your bumps, sets and spikes with dozens of nets open for play.

All of a courts are giveaway and accessible on a first-come, first-served basis, with balls accessible for lease during beach concessionaires.

cycling on huntingdon beach
(Picture: Sadie Whitelocks)

Renting a bike and biking down a beach trail is a good approach of shower it all in.

We had a hoot pedalling around with a integrate of cycles from a hotel, toll a bells like vast kids.

But if yours doesn’t offer this use we can collect adult rentals on a beach front.

Dining out

huntingdon beach eats
Sugar Shack Cafe (Picture: Sadie Whitelocks)

Surf City has a genuine laid-back charm, and this is reflected in a dining options – things are finished good but not over-dressed.

The grill stage is bustling, with a widespread of eateries charity a deluge of deliciously uninformed seafood.

For a belly-busting breakfast, conduct to the Sugar Shack Cafe, that initial non-stop in 1967.

This place is packed with impression – a walls are ornate with photos and roller memorabilia.

You can’t make reservations though a brief wait to get a chair is good value it.

#hbsugarshack #kepplersbenedict #breakfast #sogood #takemebackplease

A post common by Eatsipshoot (@eatsipshoot) on Jan 2, 2017 during 12:26pm PST

The ‘Keppler’s special’ consists of scrambled eggs on an English muffin, surfaced with avocado, thick-cut bacon and lashings of hollandaise sauce.

Another and is a unfounded coffee use – it only kept flowing.

If you’re looking for something a small some-more cosmopolitan, conduct to Bluegold, where we can graze of lox cream cheese bagels, granola french toast and summery fruit salads on request.

We had a ideal lunch fill during the Bear Flag Fish Co, that boasts beachfront views and a biggest burritos I’d seen in a while. You can get a hulk wraps pressed with your uninformed fish of choice.

Just desserts (Picture: Sadie Whitelocks)

When it comes to drinks, a uninformed coconuts have a beautifully tawny nectar and a chefs will even clout them open during a finish so we can dip out a strength for dessert. You can get a lurch of rum combined to a brew if you imagination too.

For a topnotch dinner, conduct to the Watertable at the Hyatt Regency hotel.

This place has a civil feel, with sharp interiors, unblemished use and torpedo martinis, though it’s not bleak in a slightest.

#new #springmenu #addition #panseared ##jumboscallops #mintpeapesto #bloodorange #tinycarrots #freshdill #purplepotato #crisp #botttarga #peatendril #flowers #appetizer #scallopsofinstagram #huntingtonbeach #localrestaurant #surfcityusa #hideaway @chefonaroll #hyatthuntingtonbeach

A post common by Watertable (@watertablehb) on Feb 24, 2016 during 1:58pm PST

Soft lighting, sensuous smells and a resounding timber burner fast dismissed adult a appetite.

The menu is elementary nonetheless refined, and we went for a smorgasbord of wealthy seafood treats. We were bending by a luscious scallops and proposal steamed haddock, that came wrapped in a parcel with weave to untie.


treehouse bar
Treehouse Bar (Picture: Sadie Whitelocks)

If you’re looking continue a night after with a few some-more tipples, conduct to the Treehouse Bar above Tanner’s restaurant.

This open atmosphere mark has a good vibe, with fiery torches providing feverishness on cooler nights.

The bar is circular, with hulk woven suspended lights, reaching out like wink tree branches.

If you’re thirsting after a bit of Californication, conduct to Duke’s on a beach front.

It’s Aloha Friday so come have a dash by a beach! We’ve got $5 Mai Tai’s all day!! 🍹#alohafriday #maitai #dukeshb

A post common by Duke’s Huntington Beach (@dukeshb) on Mar 11, 2016 during 11:00am PST

The roomy, double storey venue was named after Duke Kahanamoku, a mythological Hawaiian swimmer and surfer who introduced surfing to a area in 1925.

The vast tables are matched to vast parties and a Barefoot Bar serves adult a operation of dumb libations surfaced with umbrellas and candied fruits, including a Bloody Mary finished with black lava salt.

To fuel a romance

Don’t let a sleet moderate your weekend plans! Come revisit us during Aarna Spa and we will keep we comfortable with a nominal potion of champagne with any diagnosis 🍾 #helloweekend #spa #huntingtonbeach #getlostintotheblue #champagne #aarnaspa 👏🏻

A post common by Paséa Hotel Spa (@paseahotel) on Feb 17, 2017 during 10:47am PST

Nick and we indulged in a couples massage during a hotel, a recently launched Pasea Hotel.

The Aarna is a welcoming space, with a tapestry of dim woods woven with a smell of incense, transporting we to a distant flung paradise. There is also a garden area outward to put your feet up, relax and eat dusty apricots in a sun.

My masseuse worked wonders on my knots and we felt like we was relaxation into Huntington Beach’s laid behind gait of life. Meanwhile, Nick scarcely started snoring during one point.

The men’s and women’s sauna areas are separate, so we indulged in a sauna and prohibited cylinder session solo before regrouping.

gondola ride
(Picture: Sadie Whitelocks)

The Venetian gondola ride is a contingency while in Huntington Beach.

After a brief expostulate from a hotel down a Pacific Coast Highway, we found Bepi unresolved out during his gondola hut, finish with a striped T-shirt and straw hat.

The American, who has no Italian heritage, explained to us that he’s always had a passion for Venice and he went there years ago to sight as a gondolier with a pros.

You can take your possess booze and snacks aboard Bepi’s authentic gondola, and if you’re lucky enough, he will sing an Italian love strain for you under a bridge. That’s amore!

Where to stay:

We checked out a newly-opened Pasea hotel, that already seems to be a renouned spot. Think Miami glitz churned with a dash of LA roller and you’ve got it in one.]

Why a pitstop in Huntington Beach, aka Surf City, is a contingency if you're in California
(Picture: Sadie Whitelocks)


On a activity front, a pool area was buzzing with vast beds and staff whisking out cocktails to droves of sunbathers.

There was a brew of couples, families and groups of friends, with a Pasea catering for all.

Daily yoga and jogging sessions were on offer too.

Rooms during a Pasea hotel start during around £220.

How to get there:

Air New Zealand operates daily flights from London Heathrow to Los Angeles, with lapse fares from £560.

Car sinecure in a Los Angeles area starts from £15 a day with options accessible around www.kayak.co.uk.

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