We went to a convention in Anaheim August 17-22 & had 2 days to 'kill' before we headed to Seattle for an Alaskan cruise so we decided to go to Huntington Beach instead of flying home cross country. Great choice!
We rented a car from Hertz in Anaheim & drove to Newport Beach where we had lunch at Rockin' Baja Cantina again. We ate there last year on a coastal drive from Long Beach to San Diego & we loved it. A lot of times places are not as good as you remembered them to be but this time it was even better. And we had the most delightful waitress, Jessica!
After walking down the pier & wandering through the shops we headed to our hotel in Huntington Beach, the Shorebreak Hotel.
The Shorebreak is one our new favorite hotels! The location is perfect, right across from the pier & close to restaurants & bars & shops. The hotel is fun & has a great vibe. I was a little concerned about it being dog friendly (we love our outside dogs) but our room & the common areas were all very clean & smelled fresh. Our room was quiet, the bed was extremely comfortable & the bathroom was HUGE! My husband loved the shower & wants to redo our bathroom to put in a similar shower! The bathroom was well stocked with amenities & even had a nice bath robe.
All of the staff made us feel like we were coming home even though this was our first stay there. Stephanie at the front desk really stood out though & is an absolute treasure.
We also enjoyed the free wine reception in the evenings.
There is a CVS in the building below the hotel & it was so convenient to stock up & they had great prices! Everything we bought was on sale. We bought a case of 24 waters for $3, a 2 liter Coke for a $1, a 1.75 liter of Canadian Mist for $12.99 & a small sunscreen for $2.50!
After checking in to the hotel we walked down the pier & watched the surfers. The waves were not very big that day but they were relentless in their pursuit of the perfect wave! The weather was beyond perfect!
We explored the area around our hotel & went to Gallagher's Irish Pub for the Comedy Show that night. They have a free comedy show every Thursday & live music Friday-Monday nights. They had three comedians that night & the first & third comedians were not very good but the second one was funny! I believe they have different comedians every week. We ordered nachos & were not expecting potatoes! It stated that their 'nachos' were made with potatoes on the menu. Guess we missed that part!
The next morning we had breakfast at the Sugar Shack. We were able to land a table outside & it was a another beautiful day to sit outside & people watch. We were a little underwhelmed with the food there though. It was not bad, just nothing special.
We wanted to rent bikes to ride down the boardwalk & they were about $25 per bike at the rental places on the beach to rent them for the day. We found bikes for $10 per bike per day at Bargain Bike Rentals right up the street from the hotel. The bikes came with a basket & a lock. Mike, the owner, was a great guy too. We got two bikes as soon as they opened & did not return them until 6 that night.
We took off on the bikes down the boardwalk & rode to Sunset Beach stopping all along the way to watch the surfers, dogs playing on the beach & people watch. What a wonderful day!
We rode back to our hotel & locked the bikes in the downstairs & walked to Aloha Grill on Main St. I had the blackened chicken & my husband had the Mahi Mahi & we both had tea. I don't know if we were just really hungry because we had been bicycling but it was one of the best meals we had during our 18 day trip & the bill was less than $30.
After lunch we went to BJs Restaurant where we had a BJs Famous Pizookie for dessert. We split the White Chocolate Macadamia Nut with Vanilla Ice Cream. OMG it was spectacular!!! It was the best dessert we had the whole trip!
We got back on our bikes & rode the opposite direction towards Newport Beach. It was late afternoon & the wind had really picked up. It was a nice easy bike ride until we turned around to go back & were riding against the wind & then it became work! lol. So word of warning, watch the wind direction before you ride to far! Mike warned us that morning but obviously we did not listen. I would not change a thing about that day though. Riding bikes down the boardwalk was one of the highlights of our entire trip.
After taking the bikes back we explored all the quaint little shops & bought a few things. Then we went back to BJs for pizza & beer. It was very good. Then we got 'talked into' having the Chocolate Ganache at Zimzalas Restaurant & Bar one night & it was yummy. Very unique!
We absolutely loved Huntington Beach. Our only complaint was that we only had two days there! Unfortunately we had an early flight to Seattle the next morning to begin the next adventure on our journey.