Costa Mesa – A More Relaxed California – Explore


I only managed to spend a short amount of time at the beach in California so I stuck to the nearby Huntington area and it has everything you’d want.  A pier, waves fit to surf on, sandy beach, volleyball nets, good eats and loads of sunshine.  It was only a 15 min drive to where I was staying in Costa Mesa so it made sense to head over there.

huntington beach pier

While I was there I was surprised to see a baby seal sitting on the beach.  I thought it was a pretty special occurrence but have since learned that over 1000 pups have been abandoned on Californian shores.  It’s quite a problem and nobody really knows what’s causing it.  Rescue centers are struggling to keep up with all the stranded pups. The beach was dotted with “Don’t touch the seals” signs and while people were curious about this little guy – they did keep their distance.  I don’t know what happened after I left but I’ll always wonder if he went back out to sea or not. Look at that heartshaped little nose.

baby seal on the beach

Sigh, can I go back?  Please?  It was fairly early on a Sunday morning but the beach was not crowded in the least.  The sun was warm, the sand was clean and I sat to watch the volleyball players and surfers for a while.

huntington beach vollyball

One more beach photo because Ahhhhhhh.  Seriously, let’s go.

huntington beach surfers

Aside from the beach there was some really fun shopping areas.  They were more than just places to spend money with lots of unique and fun places to eat and open spaces to grab a bottle of water and have a sit too.  I really enjoyed exploring the OCMix which was about 15 min from the hotel. Also nearby was a restaurant supply store and little farmer’s market.  You could easily spend an afternoon poking about here.


1) SuzieCakes – I had a beautiful wee cherry pie. 2) Peinture – all the refurbishing goodies you could ever want. 3) The garden spaces were gorgeous – there was actually a couple holding their wedding reception in one of them.  4) Organic Modernism – If I wasn’t traveling via air I would have done some serious shopping here.  GORGEOUS.


There were two other similar areas close by but I didn’t get to explore too much as they don’t open until later on weekends and time was super tight for me.  If you go, check out the CAMP and the LAB which were across the street from each other.  They were super kitchy with inspirational advice painted in the parking lot, knitted cozies on the lamp posts and menus distributed via mail box.  I’d hoped to grab lunch there but it just didn’t work for me time wise.

Did you miss the previous post? Check it out! Read more about shopping South Coast Plaza and how you can win a trip!



  1. I’ve never been to Cali… Sounds like a wonderful trip. Anywhere near a beach is good to me. Lovely photos…. I hope the little guy got somewhere safe.

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