Sunday, September 16, 2012

Dana Point, CA

This weekend we are on a little Byway getaway in Orange Country on the California coast (infamously known as the OC). We decided to get away from the desert and head to the beach. One of the beautiful things about living in Pioneertown is that you are only a couple of hours from Los Angeles and San Diego and all the beach places in between. We thought we would escape the desert heat, but the heat followed us here as we are in the midst of a record-breaking heat wave all over this part of California. In spite of the heat, we are having a great time being in this different environment.

We are staying in Laguna Beach for the weekend, but today friends took us down the coast to share with us one of their favorite spots in the area - Dana Point. Dana Point is about an hour south of Los Angeles and less than 10 miles south of Laguna Beach. It is a pretty drive down the coast on Highway 1. Dana Point is a town, but it is also one of the few harbors in the OC area. The harbor/wharf/cove area has ample free parking, fun beach/picnic areas, a place to launch boats and kayaks, and lots of little restaurants at the wharf.  The wharf is also a launching point for whale watching tours, sport fishing tours, and boats to Catalina Island. Dana Point has held an annual Festival of Whales in March, since 1972.

You will find the Ocean Institute here, with a replica of the tall ship Pilgrim outside. A tall ship festival is held here every September - the largest on the west coast of the US. The Pilgrim was Richard Henry Dana Jr's ship and Dana Point was named for him. He described the area as "the only romantic spot on the coast." I don't know the coast around here enough to judge that statement, but it is a very nice place and I would recommend a visit here if you are coming to the area.

We spent the afternoon at the harbor/wharf watching the boats, kayakers and pelicans along the docks, then walked around Dana Point Cove. Past the beach area one can walk quite far and the rocks and tidal pools are beautiful. Here are a few of my favorite photos from the day to capture the place. Its worth a stop on your Byway.

Pelicans hoping for some fish.

Pacific Ocean View from Dana Point.

Dana Point Cove.

Barnacles on the beach.

Favorite thing I found beach combing at Dana Point Cove.

Found on the beach in Dana Point Cove.

1 comment:

  1. Beat the Heat at the top of the Palm Springs Arial Tramway. If you go, stick your nose between the bark of the Butterscotch Pines at the top. MMmmmm...