A Day in Laguna: Squad Goals

Regardless of how you spend your time here, we know Laguna is a prime place to have an epic day with your squad.

Even with only 8.8 square miles of land, there is a lot of ground to cover in Laguna Beach! There is an eclectic collection of things to do, places to see, and spots to eat and drink through for friend groups. With all the variety, we thought we’d create mini itineraries with some ideas so all you need to focus on is enjoying your quality time.

Sun Worshippers: Vitamin-D Drenched Day 

Lap of Luxury: Montage Laguna / Treasure Island Beach

If you and your crew want to indulge, this is the place to do it. Head down to Treasure Island Beach, a glamorous enclave that will feel like a mini private island. Afterwards, head up to the classically magnificent Montage Laguna Beach perched right above with pristine views of the Pacific coastline for lunch. You’ll find fresh Southern California-inspired eats at their poolside restaurant, Mosaic. Then make your way over to find serenity at the Montage Spa complete with an exclusive outdoor pool, fitness facilities, heated whirlpools, cold baths, steam room, sauna, and a peaceful relaxation lounge. But the state-of-the-art facilities are just the baseline here. They have thought of every detail to ensure you have an excellent experience. From poolside service where you can order a bubbly bottle of Brut with a custom Montage label, a replenishing supply of fruit-infused water, organic snacks, and sunscreen, to outdoor workout bicycles that overlook the ocean, welcome to the epitome of what they call, “west coast wellness”.

Buzzing Hub: Main Beach

When in Laguna, you physically can’t miss Main Beach. It’s also an ideal place for a large group that desires a variety of built-in activities. Want to people watch? As the largest beach in town, this Main Beach is the most popular and primed with personalities. Feeling sporty? Play basketball or volleyball with your crew with the multiple courts available. Wanting an aesthetic experience? Walk along the boardwalk, and capture camera-worthy memories in front of the famous lifeguard tower. The point being: you can pretty much do it all here. So make sure to arrive early and claim your spots on the sand before the crowds flow in. Main Beach also happens to be conveniently located one block away from downtown, where you can easily peruse through various shops and dining options.

Drinks: Keep the beach vibes alive and walk up from the sand to The Deck. This may not technically be a rooftop, but it sits right on the sand giving you pure oceanfront views.

Family-Style Meal: We love Brussels Bistro, this underground European café known for their Moules Frites, mussels that steep and steam in flavorful broth, get delivered to your table by the pot with crisp and golden fries. Order a few flavors by the pound and share. If you happen to be here on a weekend, a DJ takes over and this spot transforms into a nightclub after 10:30PM. Pro Tip: Ask about their ‘secret’ Moules Frites flavors – they are excellent. 

Treasure Hunters: Noteworthy Boutique Buys

Shopping is always more fun with friends because they can help you justify and enable memorable purchases you may not have made yourself. Shopping in Laguna Beach is even more fun because it is crawling with small boutiques filled with individualized pieces and whimsical novelties that your friend has suddenly stated you need (which by the way, you do). Our shopping spree starts at Buy Hand, a store focused on supporting humans and their handmade items. Next, The Shop and Amenah are a couple of our favorite shops for women, who’s clothing lines scream Laguna Beach fashion. For something truly one-of-a-kind that also embodies the art scene in town, the The Soul Project highlights three local artists and offers limited edition products featuring their work. For tasteful home décor and uncommon gifts, head to Vertigo Home where you can purchase a piece for your place that will remind you of your Laguna experience at home.

Rooftop Drinks: Skyloft is one of our favorite spots in town filled with an extensive list of fun cocktail options and great happy hour specials. This is the perfect pregame spot, but if it’s a Friday or Saturday and you stick around until after dusk, it also happens to be the place to go for live music and DJs.  

Family-Style Meal: Just as a lot of the shops in town sell high-quality, handmade products distinct to Laguna Beach, Nirvana Grille creates unique, contemporary California cuisine using high-quality ingredients from local purveyors. 

Art Lovers: Eye-Appealing Afternoon 

There are only a few ways to travel into Laguna Beach. One of those main ways is by driving through Laguna Canyon Road. As you admire the natural beauty of the canyons, you will come across the equally beautiful Hive Murals. Make a pit stop to appreciate these colorful creations that cover entire facades throughout The Hive. While you’re here, stop in for a craft brew at Laguna Beach Beer Company where you and your crew can toast to the day ahead. Hop back in the car (or one of our free trolleys), and head to the LAM (Laguna Art Museum). This waterfront gallery sits right along Pacific Coast Highway and has been open for over 100 years now, dedicated to featuring and representing the beautiful life, history, and culture in California throughout various decades. Laguna Art Museum also sits next to Heisler Park where you are likely to find artists painting pieces inspired by the scenery in front of them. After this, get lost in Laguna exploring the galleries, like Avran Fine Art and Lindsay Rapp Gallery, sprinkled throughout town – breathing artful life into the core of this original artist’s colony. 

Rooftop Drinks: With both the dreamy coastline and stunning canyons competing for your attention, it only makes sense to appreciate the natural canvas of Laguna from The Rooftop Lounge for some cocktails and views.

Family-Style Meal: Located in the same building as The Rooftop, walk downstairs for dinner at K’ya Bistro. We adore this playful tapas bar where they artfully fuse various cuisines. Everything served is meant to be shared, but everything is so tasty and inventive, your squad may start fighting on who gets last bite. 

Adventure Seekers: Exciting Exploration 

Water Tank Trail are both short enough for a morning or afternoon hike, and although a bit strenuous, have views that are worth the work. La Vida Laguna’s guided Electric Bike Tour is another incredible way to see all sides of Laguna in a day, where you’ll get to discover charming neighborhoods and main attractions in two hours. 

Rooftop Drinks: Treat yourself afterwards for a little happy hour sugar rush. Step back into the 1940s at Ruby’s Diner, which has a newly renovated rooftop patio where you can get wine, beer, and their classically creamy milkshakes. Enjoy the panoramic ocean views as you sip with no guilt after all that working out you just did. 

Family-Style Meal: For dinner, you can keep the vibes casual and walk up to Coyote Grill from some Baja-style Mexican cuisine. 

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About the Author
Caitlin Sakdalan

Caitlin Sakdalan

Caitlin Sakdalan is a social media influencer and food writer. Through her passion for food as an experiential connector of people and cultures, coupled with expertise in social and digital, she shares her extensive food knowledge and experiences to thousands of followers daily. Caitlin is one of Dovetale's "5 best Influencers to watch in 2017," and her photography is featured on Tasting Table, Yahoo, Huffington Post, and other online outlets. Follow her on Instagram @befatbehappy.

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