24 Hours in Laguna Beach

24 Hours in Laguna Beach

​With so many attractions packed into one small, beachside city, deciding where to explore first is no easy feat.

From its pristine shoreline to its vibrant art and shopping districts, make the most of your day in Laguna Beach with our handy, 24 hour itinerary.

Morning: Hit the beach

Diver S Cove

Boasting over 30 coves, BEACHES and parks along its seven mile-long stretch of pristine SoCal coastline, hitting the sand is a must on any trip to Laguna Beach. Kick-start your vacation with a swim at Fisherman’s Cove, tide-pooling at TREASURE ISLAND BEACH, surfing at BROOKS ST. BEACH, or snorkeling at DIVER’S COVE. Or simply lay out under the sun on MAIN BEACH – the beautiful beachfront park in the heart of downtown Laguna.

Prefer to hit the water with expert local guides? Take an ocean kayak or paddleboard tour with LA VIDA LAGUNA to explore hidden coves, and spot dolphins, whales, and more.

Lunch: Belgian treats at Brussels Bistro

Belgian waffles at brussels bistro

Open for lunch on weekends only, don’t miss you chance to try authentic Belgian dishes with an innovative twist at this popular BISTRO-BAR. From mussels and steak tartar to traditional Belgian fries with 10 different homemade dipping sauces, Brussels Chef Thomas Crijns will ensure you’re in tasty hands. Take a seat on the terrace or dine underground in an urban-cool setting – bottle of premium Belgian beer in hand.

Afternoon: Art and shopping downtown

Shopping in laguna beach

SoCal’s original ‘artist colony,’ Laguna Beach is home to more than 70 independent galleries, 400 working artists, and numerous festivals throughout the year. It also boasts more than 100 unique works of public art, scattered around its streets. Pick up a free map from the OFFICIAL VISITORS CENTER (381 Forest Avenue) and explore the murals, statues and benches found downtown.

Starting at MAIN BEACH and stretching to Legion Street, Laguna’s downtown is also a hotspot for specialty SHOPS and GALLERIES. Head to GORJANA, for beautifully-crafted jewelry; SIMPLE LAGUNA, for high-end men’s and women’s fashions, and LAGUNA ART MUSEUM for California art of all periods and styles.

Time to spare? Head further south to the HIP DISTRICT. As well as many of Laguna’s earliest buildings, you’ll find independent galleries and some of the most interesting stores in the city here. Use the free LAGUNA BEACH TROLLEY to get around. Be sure to download the VISIT LAGUNA BEACH APP for a real-time Trolley Tracker.

Evening: Scenic sundowners at Skyloft

Skyloft Laguna

Famous for its spectacular sunsets, watching the sun drop into the sparkling ocean is not to be missed in Laguna Beach. Head to SKYLOFT, a nightlife hub in the downtown village, and climb up to its rooftop terrace bar – the highest in town. Here you can enjoy spectacular views of MAIN BEACH and beyond, plus happy hour cocktails in a friendly environment. (Don’t miss the Georgia Peach Cobbler or Bourbon Mimosa.)

Dinner: Mesquite meats at Maro Wood Grill

Maro Empanadas

Where better to end your day in Laguna Beach, than at MARO WOOD GRILL – an Argentinian-inspired restaurant boasting the best mesquite wood-grilled meats in town. From grass-fed beef to organic chicken, watch your order being cooked over an open fire in front of you, and be sure to leave room for one of its award-winning desserts. From chimichurri and aioli empanadas to ice cream, its hand-crafted menu items make this a memorable final meal.

Entertainment: The Laguna Playhouse

Laguna Playhouse

Still got energy left to burn? Browse the diverse program at THE LAGUNA PLAYHOUSE for a spot of after-dinner entertainment. The oldest continuously operating theater on the West Coast, the likes of Bette Davis and Harrison Ford have graced the stage of this award-winning playhouse, and its intimate setting makes it a novel alternative to dinner and a movie.

Prefer live music and dancing? Boasting three venues in one, MOZAMBIQUE is as popular for its chart-topping live music as its spicy seafood creations. Venture upstairs to its lively lounge bar, for everything from reggae to 80s pop.

Extend your visit and STAY WITH US ON THE BEACH! Laguna Beach is the only southern California city with hotels on the sand. 

About the Author

Trip Advisor

Trip Advisor

TripAdvisor, Inc. is an American travel and restaurant website company providing hotel and restaurant reviews, accommodation bookings and other travel-related content.

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