A day in Huntington Beach and Cypress, California

Sandwiched between two major attractions, the city of LA and Disneyland, there are a number of suburban cities that seem quiet in comparison. You may find yourself booking a hotel in one of these more relaxed atmospheres to escape the hustle bustle of major tourism. If you are staying in a city like Huntington Beach or Cypress, you may learn that these areas have a draw of their own! Here are a few activities for these ‘in-between’ areas:

When I hear ‘California’ I think beach, surfers, and sunshine. So naturally when visiting, I want to spend a lot of time in the waves and on the sand. I found Sunset Beach [Street parking along Pacific Ave and intersections of numbered streets such as 19th St or 7th St in Huntington Beach] in the town of Huntington Beach and returned day after day. The wide beach is over a mile long so it isn’t hard to find a quiet spot to yourself. Keep your eyes peeled, because you may be sharing the beach with plovers and dolphins!

sunset beach 1 sunset beachA quick five minute drive will bring you to the Bolsa Chica Ecology Reserve [3842 Warner Avenue Huntington Beach, CA 92649] where there are miles of beautiful wetland trails to explore, you can hardly believe you are parallel to a highway.

Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve 9The details of the flora are interesting and different in this environment.

Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve 11 Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve 13If you are a bird lover this preserve is a dream!
Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve 8 Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve 7 Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve 6 Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve 1 Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve 3 Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve 2There were so many different species of birds all actively fishing, singing, and interacting up close along the trails! The hike was certainly never boring. The ecosystem contains a variety of animals other than birds. I was able to spot a rabbit, lizard, and crabs.

Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve 5 Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve 4 Bolsa Chica Ecological ReserveI spent hours walking these well maintained trails and it was a highlight of my trip to California. This preserve is a true gem.

After hours of sun I was ready to head back to my hotel in Cypress and get some fish tacos for dinner. California Fish Grill [10569 Valley View Street, Cypress, CA 90630] is a local chain which serves up fresh and healthy seafood options. The atmosphere is casual and the service is fast. Head there on taco Tuesday for a great deal, although everyday is pretty affordable here. I tried some Cajun seasoned grilled white fish tacos with crisp toppings, and made sure to load up with toppings at the salsa bar.

california fish grill 1This is definitely a popular place filled with happy chatting customers.

The Drug Works Café and Pharmacy [12567 E Carson St Hawaiian Gardens, CA 90716] is a cozy little Korean café, great for spending some time after dinner. People were comfortably sitting at tables with their laptops chatting over amazing looking lattes and at the bar eating perfect looking little multicolored desserts. We ordered a macaroon, mochi ice cream, and an acai bowl for a little sugary feast.

cafe drug works 4Full and content we lingered in conversation enjoying the quiet relaxed ambiance of this unique location, what a wonderful day.

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