Your Family-Friendly Guide to Balboa Village
Well, almost. Thanksgiving break is right around the corner, which means the kiddos will be out of school and eager for some fun. And while there’s no place like home for the holidays, it’s also nice to get out and about. Whether it’s an autumn afternoon at the beach or an evening ice cream run, we’ve rounded up six easy ways to entertain the kiddos this month. Head to Balboa Village on the Balboa Peninsula for a day of family-friendly fun that includes everything from bike rides to arcade games.
Ranked as one of the top things to do in Southern California, whale watching is a great family activity during the fall and winter months. May through November brings warmer waters and the opportunity to view blue whales, while gray whales can be spotted in the winter and spring. To see these majestic creatures up close, book a whale watching excursion with Davey’s Locker in Balboa Village! Their knowledgeable team of crew members will guide your adventure and provide interesting facts and characteristics of these beautiful sea creatures.
Cruise along the Balboa Peninsula and take in views of the Newport Coast! Seaside Bike Rentals offers everything from men’s, women’s and children’s bikes to surreys, tandems, beach cruisers and mountain bikes. This rental shop even has a selection of Pedego rentals if you’re looking to cover more ground. All of their bikes are brand new, and each rental comes with a free helmet and lock, so you can park and dine!
Head to Newport Beach’s time-honored Balboa Fun Zone for a fun-filled day by the bay. This family-friendly amusement area boasts an assortment of activities, including Ferris wheel rides, arcade games and more. Let the kids play, then head over to Balboa Bar-B-Que or Jane’s Corndogs for a mid-day snack! The Fun Zone is also home to several spots for a sweet treat—try Balboa Bakery & Donuts for some glazed goodness or Balboa Beach Treats for a scoop of ice cream or a frozen banana!
For an evening meal on the harbor, snag a table at Newport Landing! This seafood hotspot has been a Newport Beach staple for over 20 years and boasts an assortment of delicious food and drinks. Head upstairs to the Oyster Bar for tropical cocktails, local wines and a selection of shareable small plates. Happy hour runs every day from 12-6 p.m., and the menu features everything from steamed clams and tri tip sliders to oysters, ceviche and ahi poke nachos. Newport Landing also has a stellar kid’s menu with options like fish and chips, chicken tenders, buttered linguine pasta and more!
Satisfy your sweet tooth with an after-dinner trip to Cowafornia Ice Cream! This old-school ice cream shop offers scoops made with real California milk, house-baked cookies and hand-crafted coffee drinks (if you’re in need of a pick-me-up). The kiddos can choose between flavors like rocky road, cookie dough, salted caramel, rainbow sherbert and more. This is the perfect pit-stop before heading home!
Written By: Kaylin Waizinger