Highlighted by the beauty of the Pacific coast, Long Beach is a relaxing getaway destination, ideal to visit any time of the year. Discover some of the hidden locations that have become favorites for both locals and visitors alike.
1. Naples Island
Dotted with sailboats and gondolas along its picturesque canals, Naples Island offers a slice of Italian flair on the California coast. Though hidden away in a serene locale, this nautical getaway is situated next to Long Beach’s abundance of restaurants and shops. Rich with history and enchanting villas, Naples Island is the ideal location for a day of romance or a family outing. Visitors can enjoy a bike ride along the water’s edge, take a scenic cruise in a gondola, rent a stand-up paddle board or kayak for the afternoon.
2. Parkers’ Lighthouse
Known for its breathtaking views and its fresh mesquite grilled seafood, Parkers’ Lighthouse offers an assortment of Southern California seafood dishes and sushi. Guests can enjoy happy hour Monday through Friday, 3 – 7 p.m. in the main floor lounge or on the waterfront patio. For those looking for an upscale experience, Parkers’ is also the home of Queensview Steakhouse. The restaurant is located on the third floor and offers a 360◦ view. Diners can indulge in a menu featuring pork chops, prime steaks, lobster, scallops and more.
3. Retro Row
Home to more than 40 independent shops, Retro Row features an array of vintage and contemporary clothing, art, and furniture as well as locally owned wine bars, coffee shops and restaurants. While many of the shops don’t open until noon, you’ll still find a number of set designers and Hollywood costumers perusing the strip in search of the perfect pieces for film productions spanning the 1920’s – 1980’s. Make sure to check out the restored 1920’s Art Theatre, which features art house films, live concerts, and other cultural events.
4. Museum of Latin American Art
Located in the up-and-coming East Village Arts District, The Museum of Latin American Art (MOLAA) is the only museum in the country exclusively dedicated to contemporary and modern Latino and Latin American art. Its permanent collection houses more than 1,600 pieces of artwork. Since its opening in 1996, the museum has greatly expanded in size and now includes a stunning 15,000 square foot sculpture garden. When you visit, be sure to take time to explore the art studio, research library, and screening room.
5. Earns Burns Miller Japanese Garden
Situated on the campus of California State University Long Beach, the elegant Earl Burns Miller Japanese Garden harkens back to the Imperial Gardens of Tokyo. Featuring winding pathways, peaceful koi ponds, intricate bridges and sculptures, this living museum offers a unique way to learn about Japanese art and culture. Learn about traditional ceremonies at the Tea House, attend seasonal events, or reflect upon your visit at the Zen Garden.
6. Rancho Los Alamitos
A tribute to the ranching heritage of Southern California, Rancho Los Alamitos Historic Ranch and Gardens offers visitors a glimpse into the past. The ranch features four acres of lush gardens, meticulously restored barns, a working blacksmith shop and corrals. Children will love the animal residents at the farm — chickens, ducks, rabbits, and even draft horses call the historic site their home. Rancho Los Alamitos is open to the public Wednesday through Sunday, free of charge.