How To Entertain Out-of-Town Guests in Southern California
Keeping your guests happy and busy So Cal style
Could there be a better way to spend a sunny Southern California day than checking out a fun-filled coastal hangout? Feel those refreshing ocean breezes as you stroll along these historic Southern California beach walks.
Santa Monica Pier, Santa Monica, 310/458-8900, http://www.santamonicapier.org
This famous pier has had a recent facelift and now hosts a two-acre fun zone with many rides, including a 1,300-foot steel roller coaster, a 9-story ferris wheel and the Ocean Discovery Center sponsored by UCLA.
Redondo Beach Pier/International Boardwalk, Pacific Coast Highway and Torrance Blvd., 310/318-0631 #2, http://www.redondopier.com
Watch the boats in King Harbor, have a relaxing lunch on the Pier or treat your kids to the Redondo Fun Factory with its video arcade and carnival games and rides.
Fisherman’s Village, Marina del Rey
Overlooking the Marina del Rey harbor, the New England-style buildings of this village boast shops and restaurants. Water sports are popular here, too, especially sailing and kayaking.
Seaport Village, San Diego, 619/235-4014, Events Hotline 619/235-4013
Walk down cobblestone paths and take in the unsurpassed views of San Diego Bay as you meander through this village of shops and eateries.
For the truly romantic spirit, dinner cruises offer a relaxing and often luxurious way to take in the beauty of Southern California’s amazing coastline. Imagine gliding slowly around Marina del Rey harbor as night falls and the city lights begin to sparkle, or sailing beneath the Coronado Bridge with the San Diego skyline silhouetted against a pastel sunset. From brunch and dinner cruises to music and murder mysteries, we’ve scoped out the best cruising options up and down the Southern California coast.
Hornblower Dinner Cruises, 800/ON-THE-BAY, http://www.hornblower.com
Nightly dining, weekend brunch, and other specialty cruises throughout California. Ports in Marina del Rey, Newport Beach and San Diego
Murder Mystery Dinner Theatre Cruise, Long Beach, Grand Romance, 949/509-9889, http://www.grandromance.com
Reggae/Blues Star Party Cruises, Long Beach, 562/799-7000
Adventures at Sea, Newport Beach, 888-4-GONDOLA, 949/645-BOAT Catered private events and romantic gondola rides.