A Weekend in Huntington Beach, Surf City USA®

(credit: courtesy of Visit Huntington Beach)

With 10 miles of uninterrupted, wide golden sand beaches along the Pacific Ocean, Huntington Beach provides an iconic beach getaway on the West Coast. Just 35 miles south of Los Angeles and 95 miles north of San Diego, the dynamic coastal city has near-perfect outdoor weather (between 60-90 degrees) and almost year-round sun with 281 days of sunlight per year. It officially received its moniker of Surf City USA® in 1991 and plays host to professional sporting events such as the U.S. Open of Surfing and offers numerous spots for locals and travelers to test their metal on the Pacific Ocean waves. From a wide expanse of beautiful and spacious beaches, a growing restaurant scene and a few unique activities, here is how to maximize a weekend in Huntington Beach.

There are several options for where to stay, but the expansive beachfront Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach Resort And Spa stands out from all the other hotels. Presenting Pacific Ocean views and Spanish-inspired architecture, with 517 guest rooms (including 57 suites), the hotel is just steps from 10-Mile Beach, Huntington Beach Pier and Pacific City. Book your stay at their massive 2,500 sq. ft. Presidential Beach House Suite located on the fourth floor of the hotel presenting a kitchen with butler’s pantry, walk-in master closet, jetted tub, and a living room with cozy fireplace.

Now on to planning the itinerary…

(credit: courtesy of Visit Huntington Beach)


Whether driving in from a local Southern California city or one of the nearby airports, from the moment you arrive you are immediately immersed in the unique experiences that the city has to offer. 

If arriving in the mid-morning, swing by Pacific City, Huntington Beach’s oceanfront shopping, dining and entertainment destination. Located across from the iconic Huntington Beach Pier, it offers 191,000 square feet of boutique and national retail tenants as well as a collection of first-to-market restaurants and exceptional eateries, and Lot 579, a unique artisanal food hall.

Just six miles away in Bella Terra, another outdoor shopping mall in the city, swing by Puesto Huntington Beach for lunch. Offering a contemporary and approachable take on authentic Mexican cuisine, this beautifully designed (and massive) restaurant presents Mexico City-style tacos made with house-made blue corn tortillas, scratch salsas and a great margarita list. 

After a day of shopping and eating, book yourself a treatment at Pacific Waters Spa, the expansive 20,000 sq. ft. spa at Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach Resort And Spa. Reminiscent of a warm, elegant Spanish-style estate, this spa offers a full menu of treatments and a lovely patio to mingle and hear the not-so-distant waves. 

(credit: Good Vibes)

Walking distance from the hotel, Good Vibes is a plant-based restaurant offering up a delicious menu and a great spot for a casual dinner. From their Shanghai Dumplings to their Carne Asada Crunch Wrap or the Surf City Burrito, be sure to order one of their fresh juices and save some room for a selection of fresh baked goods for dessert. 

Just steps from the restaurant, explore Downtown Huntington Beach with blocks of shops and an always-vibrant atmosphere. It is here you will find the following attractions: Huntington Beach Pier, Surfing Walk of Fame and the Surfer’s Hall of Fame. To get around, the City of Huntington Beach launched a free all-electric transit service that services the Downtown area called Circuit, operating Mon-Sat from 10am-10pm and Sun 10am-9pm.

(credit: courtesy of Visit Huntington Beach)


Take advantage of the beachfront location and start your morning with a private surfing lesson with McKinnon Surf & SUP Lessons. For those that are looking for an active but more grounded experience, Toes on the Nose brings private and group yoga sessions to the Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach Resort & Spa guests. This hour-long class is led by knowledgeable instructors who tailor this unique beachside yoga experience to your level of practice. After your class, book a beach cruiser rental and stroll up and down the strand taking in the beautiful views. 

After your busy beachside morning, head back to the hotel and grab a late breakfast or brunch at Watertable. Offering ‘Morning Glories’ such as Avocado Toast, benedicts or eggs that can be substituted with JUST egg and sweet ‘Sugar and Flour’ items like the Strawberry French Toast, sit outside and enjoy the views during a tranquil meal. 

(credit: courtesy of Visit Huntington Beach)

Spend the early afternoon out on the water with Prince Charters and book one of their charters for between two and four hours. Cruise the calm waters of Huntington Harbour in style and you can either bring your own food and beverages or purchase beer, wine, hard seltzer, champagne and sangria on board or contact them for catering options. 

When you get back on land, head over to Bella Sophia Chocolates for a truly delectable chocolate tasting. Located in the Pacific City mall, they make everything handmade in small batches from Hand Rolled Truffles to Gianduja Ghost Bites to multiple mixed boxes and kits to please your sweet tooth. 

After a full two days in Surf City USA®, check out the sunset before you are on your merry way whether driving up the scenic Highway 1 to Los Angeles or down to Orange County to catch your flight.

Jarone Ashkenazi

Jarone Ashkenazi is a seasoned writer who covers: travel, luxury items and other lifestyle topics. View more work at Connect with him on Twitter at @JaroneAsh ...(Read More)

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