Visit Newport Beach

Back Bay

Upper Newport Bay


One of only a few remaining estuaries in southern California, Upper Newport Bay is a tranquil setting where fresh and saltwater meet and mix. Upper Newport Bay Nature Preserve and Ecological Reserve represent approximately 1,000 acres of open space. It is the home of nearly 200 species of birds, including several endangered species, as well as numerous varieties of mammals, fish, and native plants. The bay is an important stopover for migrating birds on the Pacific Flyway and up to 30,000 birds can be seen on any day during the winter months. Six rare endangered species can be found in this habitat including: the Light Footed Clapper Rail, Brown Pelican, Belding’s Savannah Sparrow, Black Rail, Peregrine Falcon and California Least Tern. The bay is also home to one endangered plant species – Saltmarsh Bird’s Beak. Activities: Kayaking (5.8 miles), Hiking (3.2 mile loop)

  • Kid Friendly
  • Pet Friendly
  • Pets Allowed
Yelp Based on 160 Reviews Yelp

Beautiful Beautiful Reserve. Hidden away in the urban setting. Walking trails with the wetland birds. Take a peek of the Reserve via my... More

This is probably one of my favourite places to enjoy a run. Away from the crowds, (which is nice --- especially during the COVID-19 pandemic), it's a great... More

Love coming here to run/walk/hike. There's plenty of parking spots, a variety of trails, dog friendly, bike friendly, family friendly. They have a nice view... More

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