When we first contemplated this entry of the best places to swim in Newport Beach, we considered simply posting a photo of Main Street Village’s Junior Olympic size swimming pool and calling it a day. After all, what better place to swim than your own backyard? And not just because of the pool — don’t forget our cabanas and hot tubs.
But then we remembered we are right next door to beautiful Newport Beach. Home to both (the obvious) beaches and (the not-so-obvious) top swimming pool programs in the world. So instead we think that this is a great opportunity to remind you of the beaches almost in your backyard, plus an option for the more athletically-inclined competitive swimmer.
Let’s start with the namesake, shall we? With sands that stretch for five miles along the Balboa Peninsula (named, we’re pretty sure, for the Spanish explorer and not the fictional boxer), there is plenty to explore beyond the surf. So in addition to swimming, you can also take advantage of the bike paths. And a bicycle might be the way to go, as parking is limited.
Just across the eastern tip of the Balboa Peninsula, you can find the Corona del Mar State Beach — protected as part of the California State Park system. And we’re glad it is, as this half-mile of beachfront parkland framed by cliffs is simply divine. Not just for swimmers, this oasis is popular with surfers and divers as well.
A bit of a drive, as it is in Laguna Beach, we decided to throw this one in as a beautiful place to swim — but only underwater with appropriate gear. AKA scuba diving. A bit secluded, this idyllic cove can experience difficult swells. But surfers and divers alike fall in love with what Moss Point has to offer.
Really, there’s just two to mention here that goes beyond what our pool has to offer, and one is only if you have kids:
Operated by the City of Irvine, this is a great place to go to brush up on (or even start to learn) swimming skills.
Have kids? This place focuses on the pool from a purely athletic perspective, training youth to be stronger swimmers and better water polo players (no, this does not entail your kid yelling “Marco!” with her eyes shut while others respond “Polo!”).