Best Beach In Orange County - 2010
Santa Ana River Jetties
Seashore Drive, off Pacific Coast Highway
Newport Beach, CA 92663
There are OC beaches with better surfing, less pollution and more unspoiled beauty, but when you've got to hit the beach right now, there is no beating the Santa Ana River jetties. Unlike the state park on the Huntington Beach side of the river and its $10-per-space parking, you can usually find a free slot outside the residential area on the Newport Beach side. You'll also find more spaces on the sand for your towel, umbrella and cooler. Just a few blocks south of the river mouth that flushes out stinky mud, polluted water and ear infections whenever it rains is a great surfing spot known for consistently shaped waves that are best plied by watermen and waterwomen who know what they are doing. On the other side of Pacific Coast Highway from the beach are cafés, a motel, a tattoo shop, an Army/Navy store and the Frog House surf shop. The Santa Ana River jetties is also among the easiest OC beaches to get in and out of for early-morning jogs and sunset strolls.