Admittedly, Crystal Cove isn't the best spontaneous getaway?you might have to reserve up to seven months in advance, and be on the ball at 8 a.m. on the first of the month in order to do so. But there's a reason for the insane popularity these beach houses have attained over the years. Beaches don't get much more unspoiled than the shoreline of a state park, and as beach cottages go, the average rental price of $165 per night is a better deal than you'll get at most of the fancy-schmancy corporate chains at more commercial beaches. Some of the cottages date back to the 1920s, but the amenities are all modern?including microwave ovens in the event that you tire of dining in the nearby Beachcomber restaurant, which specializes in seafood and Greek/Mediterranean cuisine (ever had nachos topped with hummus?).