In the harbor of Newport Beach in Southern California, Balboa Island is a man-made island lined with beautiful homes, upscale shops and restaurants.
There are no hotels on the island, so if you want to stay for a week or even a month, you must look into Balboa Island vacation rentals.
Besides soaking up the sun at one of the area beaches, there are several other attractions that visitors to the area can enjoy.
Balboa Island Ferry
Part of the fun of visiting Balboa Island is getting there. For over 100 years, the Balboa Island Ferry has been shuttling passengers and cars on the 800-foot journey across Newport Bay.
It used to be the only way to get to the island. Today you can still take the ferry or drive over the bridge connecting the peninsula to the island.
Balboa Fun Zone
Kids of all ages love the Balboa Fun Zone, one of the last remaining beachside amusement parks in Southern California. Located on the peninsula, the area has a towering Ferris wheel that offers daytime or nighttime rides. Other attractions include carnival games, an arcade and bumper cars.
Constructed in 1906, the Balboa Pier is now a popular spot for fishing. Visitors can also enjoy a burger or milkshake in the 1950s setting of Ruby’s Diner at the end of the pier.
Surf’s up at this famous part of the Balboa Peninsula beach. A rock jetty near Newport Beach Harbor entrance helps create 30-foot waves that surfers, boogie boarders, and body surfers rush to ride.
Balboa Island Museum & Historical Society (BIMHS)
History buffs will enjoy a visit to the Balboa Island Museum & Historical Society (BIMHS). In a vintage cottage on Marine Avenue, the museum showcases items and artifacts of the island’s history. It’s said to be one of the best small museums around.