Planning a Laguna Beach weekend getaway? Look no further than this pre-planned 3-day guide to Laguna Beach. The laid-back vibe of Laguna is contagious. Home to gorgeous beaches and delicious restaurants, I promise you will fall in love with this California coastal town. So read on, and plan your perfect Laguna Beach weekend getaway.
HOW TO GET TO LAGUNA BEACH
If you live within driving distance it should be a fairly quick and easy drive. I live in Arizona, and it took about 5-6 hours to drive to Laguna, which in the dead of the summer, I was happy to drive anywhere to escape the Arizona summer heat.
If you are flying from another part of the country, the easiest airport to fly into is John Wayne Santa Ana. John Wayne is located about 20 minutes from Laguna Beach.
Other flight options can be found through LAX or Long Beach. This will be about an hour’s drive to Laguna Beach depending on traffic.
You can either use a ride-share service or rent a car from the airport to get to Laguna. However, with this itinerary, you will not need a rental car. Laguna Beach offers a Trolley service that routes through the town. You can also easily walk. Traffic and parking can be a nightmare as well, so honestly, it is easier to get around on foot.
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WHERE TO STAY
Laguna Beach has a limited selection of hotels, and if you plan to visit during the summer months, they tend to book up quickly. Here are all the hotel options in Laguna. I listed a few of my favorite hotels below as well!
Surf and Sand Resort
Overlooking the Pacific Ocean, Surf and Sand Resort is located in the heart of Laguna Beach and offers its guests private beach access.
Laguna Beach House
Located in the heart of downtown and within walking distance of many of the main beaches and restaurants. The space is cutely decorated with an airy surfer vibe. Laguna Beach House Hotel also has a hot tub and pool for guests to relax in.
Hotel Joaquin is a boutique-style hotel with only a few rooms. The lobby is absolutely gorgeous! There is a full-service restaurant and bar on-site, as well as a stylish cabana-style pool with ocean views.
WHAT TO PACK
Check out my full packing guide to Laguna here. Laguna is a beach town, so dressing casually to restaurants and shorts and flip-flops during the day is just fine! However, even if you are traveling here during the summer months, bring a jacket and dress in layers, the evenings do get chilly.
LAGUNA BEACH WEEKEND GETAWAY – DAY ONE
Check-In. After checking in, explore the town of Laguna! There are so many cute shops, you can easily walk around the town and take a peek into most of them. One of my favorite streets to explore is Forest Ave.
Dinner: Sapphire. Sapphire serves delicious food with lovely outdoor seating. Make reservations in advance!
LAGUNA BEACH WEEKEND GETAWAY – DAY TWO
Breakfast: Orange Inn. This colorful cafe serves breakfast and world-famous date smoothies!
Beach Day: Treasure Island Beach & Victoria Beach + Pirate Tower
TREASURE ISLAND BEACH
Pack a day bag and head to the beach! Take the trolley or drive to Treasure Island Beach. Before you even walk down to the beach, walk along the walkways atop. The views are spectacular. Once you have soaked up all the views, walk down to the actual beach. Treasure Island Beach is a large sandy beach with arches, caves, and tide pools to explore. Spend the afternoon exploring and relaxing on the beach.
VICTORIA BEACH + PIRATE TOWER
If the tide permits, you can actually walk to Victoria Beach from Treasure Beach (towards the right). If it is high tide, go back to the parking lot and take the trolley to Victoria Beach.
The Laguna Beach Pirate Tower is one of the most unique attractions in California.
Take the Trolley to Victoria Drive and walk around down through the tunnel on Victoria Drive. Then take Dumond Drive until you reach the beach. Walk right, towards what looks like a cliff, go around the ridge and you will reach the famous Pirate Tower. Once you have arrived, admire the tower!
Apps & Happy Hour: The Deck. Sit beachside on The Deck and enjoy cocktails and appetizers while gazing out into the ocean.
Sunset Stroll: Heisler Park. I absolutely adore Heisler Park, the views and gardens are spectacular!
Late Dinner: 230 Forest Avenue Restaurant & Bar. Offering a cozy yet trendy dining room, serving delicious seafood.
LAGUNA BEACH WEEKEND GETAWAY – DAY THREE
Breakfast: Laguna Coffee Company. Home to the tastiest baked goods, paninis, and espresso drinks. All coffee drinks are made with house-roasted beans!
OPEN DAY! Either go to one of the many beaches, wine tasting, or hike to the Top of the World. I listed all the activities in more detail below. Tell me in the comments which activity you decided to do!
Dinner: Nick’s Laguna Beach. Open and airy seating serving upscale comfort food. Make sure to order the hard-boiled eggs, fried asparagus, and the prime rim sandwich. All so delish! Make reservations well in advance.
Dessert: Gelato Paradiso. Voted the best gelato in the area, the long (typically quick) line is well worth the wait.
MORE LAGUNA BEACH ACTIVITIES
- Wine Tasting. Laguna Canyon Winery is Orange County’s premium winery and public Rock n’ Roll tasting room. Grapes are sourced from select vineyards in Napa and Sonoma.
- Canyon Acres Trail Head to the Top of the World
- Main Beach: Located in the main center of Laguna, this beach is often crowded due to its location but still beautiful. It is located where the famous lifeguard tower is.
- 1,000 Steps Beach: There are about 200 steps to get down to this beach, still quite a lot, but better than 1,000! This is another expansive sandy beach with insane houses perched alongside the cliff.
- Crescent Bay: North of Laguna lies Cresent Beach. It is a great place to see wildlife and enjoy tidepools.
- Heisler Park Beaches: Noted for its beautifully landscaped grounds and stunning views of rocky coves and beaches. There are a few beaches you can reach from here, including Picnic Beach and Rockpile.
- Marine Room Tavern
- The Saloon
- Skyloft Laguna Beach
- The Sandpiper Lounge
- The Seahorse Bar at Pearl Street General
Coffee / Breakfast:
- Zinc Cafe & Market
- Driftwood Kitchen
- The Stand Natural Foods
- Cafe Heidelberg
- Banzai Acai Bowls
- Andree’s Patisserie
TRAVEL TIPS FOR LAGUNA BEACH
- Make reservations at all restaurants and bars if possible. The town is very small and touristy. I made reservations almost two months in advance at some places.
- Book your accommodations in advance as well.
- No need to rent a car, Laguna Beach is very walkable. However, if you choose to rent a car check out rentalcars.com for the best deals!
- Laguna Beach Trolley. All the info and a downloadable app can be found on their website.
I would repeat this trip in a heartbeat and luckily, you can copy this exact Laguna Beach Weekend Getaway! If you need any help planning your trip, please contact me or leave a comment below. Looking for more USA destinations? Check them all out here!