Art, Gelato, & Sunshine- Laguna Beach Day Trip Itinerary


From its scenic coves to its charming downtown, Laguna Beach is what California Dreams are made of. This former artist colony has blossomed into a destination for travelers worldwide. While you could happily spend a week soaking up the sun on the beaches of Laguna, you can get a good taste in just one day!



Brunch at Urth Caffe

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This small LA chain recently opened its first location in Orange County in the former home of The Cottage Restaurant, which was a breakfast landmark in Laguna Beach. Judging by the huge lines that consistently lead up to its doors, Urth seems to be filling the big shoes left by The Cottage. While the long line is intimidating, it is not quite as bad as it might seem. The line leads to the front counter where you place your order, not to a hostess station where you then have to put your name on a list, and it moves pretty fast. Still, you’ll probably have to wait awhile if you come on a weekend. Enjoy a wide selection of organic coffee and tea, a breakfast panini, or huge delicious pancakes. It’s healthy! They’re organic!  Okay, they may be pesticide-free, but they definitely aren’t calorie-free. They are, however, delicious. You can sit on the ocean-view patio or inside the tastefully restored bungalow. 




Pop into the Laguna Art Museum

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If the current exhibit looks interesting to you, pop into the Laguna Art Museum (admission $7 adults/ 12 and under free). This small museum features Californian artists. Exhibits rotate regularly and are quite varied.

However, if the current exhibit doesn’t suit you, a museum isn’t the only way to get in touch with Laguna’s artsy side.




Gorgeous views with a side of art in Heisler Park

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Laguna is full of public art, and one of the most picturesque places to enjoy it is in Heisler Park. Stroll along the beautifully landscaped bluffs. Take time to check out some of the lovely sculptures that dot the park. If you’re lucky, you’ll see some of the Plein Air artists that often seek inspiration here.




Relax on the beach in Divers Cove

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As you walk along the paths, you’ll see stairs down to the beaches in a few places. You can stop at any of the beautiful coves to relax or look at the tidepools.  Divers Cove, all the way at the end of the park, is the loveliest of all.  True to its name, it’s a great place for diving and snorkeling with clear, calm waters. It also great for beach-goers who are looking to get away from the bustle of Main Beach.




Walk the boardwalk and people watch at Main Beach 

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Main Beach









When you’ve had your fill of relaxation head back toward Main Beach to walk the boardwalk and watch the chess, basketball, and volleyball players, tourists, and sun-worshippers. And, of course, you need to take your picture in front of the lifeguard tower.



Gelato break at Gelato Paradiso

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Peppertree Lane20160302_151409









There is an ice cream place right across the street from Main Beach, but it’s worth the short walk up PCH to Gelato Paradiso. It’s tucked away in the back of the cute Peppertree Lane building.  Follow the scent of freshly made waffle cones and then sample as many delectable flavors as you’d like until you find the perfect ones. We recommend Dark Chocolate Hazelnut and Raspberry.





Gallery hop and souvenir shop in Downtown Laguna












Laguna’s quaint downtown streets are home to mostly locally-owned art galleries, clothing boutiques, candy shops, and cute cafes.












Check out the mind-bending, surrealist art in the Kush Fine Art Gallery (See Yelp Reviews), the simple yet unusual home goods and clothing at Brass Tack (See Yelp Reviews), and the colorful craft items that seem to radiate happiness at Art for the Soul  (See Yelp Reviews).



Finish the day off with tacos at La Sirena Grill.

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Tucked away on Mermaid Street, just off of the main drag, this tiny “Mex-eco Eatery” is a favorite with locals who can’t get enough of their tasty tacos, burritos, and tortas. Reasonable prices, friendly service, and casual atmosphere make this a great way to end a beach day.


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