In the greater Los Angeles area, Long Beach stands out as offering a special mixture of metropolis and coast. To hear the crashing of the waves on the beach while just a block away from top-of-the-line urban entertainment options is what makes Long Beach such a remarkable place. From fascinating museums to eclectic neighborhoods, the area has so much to offer, and all just a stone’s throw away from the waters of the Pacific. If you like your cities infused with a bit of salty air, then you’ll love your stop in Long Beach. Here are seven of the top activities to take advantage of during your stay.
Check Out The “Queen Mary”
This elegant hotel comes in an unusual package: that of an art deco ocean liner. It sits alongside the dock in Long Beach, offering guests a unique lodging experience in impressive “state rooms.” There is plenty available even for a day visitor, including artwork, an impressive interior design, live entertainment, and gourmet dining. The boutiques offer excellent souvenir options, and the one-of-a-kind nature of the place makes it a Long Beach must-see.
Visit the Aquarium of the Pacific
From sea lions to stingrays, sharks to coral reefs, this aquarium provides a comprehensive look at the marine life found in the world’s largest ocean. The entirety of this massive ocean is accounted for within the walls of the aquarium, from the frigid north Pacific to the tropical south. Between the touch tanks and the live shows, you’ll get an interactive look beneath the waves you’ve been traveling on. With such a variety of exhibits and marine life, the aquarium does an excellent job of capturing the immensity and grandeur of the vaunted Pacific.
Peruse the Museum of Latin American Art
For the art-lovers, there is no better spot in Long Beach than this celebrated museum. By featuring contemporary Latin American artists, the MOLAA captures the unique spirit of Southern California. This is truly a region where societies collide and intermingle, and this cultural blending is on full display throughout the museum’s many galleries. As the only museum in the country to focus exclusively on Latin American contemporary art, it provides a unique opportunity that shouldn’t be passed up.
Go Shopping on Fourth Street
Long Beach has no shortage of shopping options, but for a different kind of experience consider checking out Fourth Street. It’s not called “Retro Row,” for nothing, and the funky mix of stores, restaurants, and galleries will take you back to an earlier era in SoCal history. The coffee shops provide atmosphere, while a visit to one of the many wine bars offers a great way to unwind.
Enjoy A Breakfast Burrito
Nothing represents the Californian fusion of American and Mexican cuisine like a classic breakfast burrito. The burrito is a northern Mexican specialty, while the egg filling brings the classic heartiness of an American breakfast. You can find them all over Long Beach, but The Breakfast Bar’s burritos are especially renowned. If you don’t arrive until the afternoon, don’t think you’ve missed your chance. These burritos tend to be large, and go down just as well in the evening as in the morning.
Check Out Shoreline Village along Rainbow Harbor
For an upscale shopping and dining experience in a truly gorgeous setting, take a ride over to Shoreline Village. From high-end boutiques to shops with more casual wear, you’ll find everything you need to supplement your wardrobe. The dining options are varied but share a commitment to quality and taste.
Feel the Furry Love at Rosie’s Dog Beach
Southern California has no shortage of beaches, but for a different kind of fun in the sun visit this stretch of sand catering especially to dogs. If you’re missing your own pets left at home, then a stroll among playful pups might bring back that special feeling only dogs can create. If a game of fetch sounds better than a fancy restaurant or a museum, then this might be the perfect getaway for you. Just don’t forget the dog biscuits if you want to win the favor of your temporary canine companions.