A historic arts colony with a long-established gay community, Laguna Beach is Orange County’s leading LGBT city. Stay in such gay-friendly spots as the Surf and Sand Resort, a spectacular oceanfront luxury hotel that’s also home to the intimate (and LGBT-friendly) Aquaterra Spa. Swim and surf in secluded coves and sunny beaches (including such gay-popular stretches as West Beach and Mountain Road Beach), then browse for high-quality art in Laguna’s numerous galleries. For more great art, visit Laguna Art Museum, known for outstanding exhibits works by some of California most important contemporary artists. At night, catch performances at the acclaimed Laguna Playhouse, then dance and hang with the locals at Club Bounce—especially lively during Laguna’s busy summer months. For an unforgettable experience, try to get tickets to the annual Pageant of the Masters, an extravaganza featuring richly costumed live performers depicting characters in master artworks.
Whether it’s manicured beach towns or celebrated theme parks, all framed by oceanfront towns and luxury yachts, “The OC” stands out as one of the state’s most iconic destinations. The always-amazing Disneyland Resort, roughly a 1-hour drive south of L.A. and 2 hours north of San Diego, continues to be one of the best-loved theme parks in the world, while Knott’s Berry Farms and other OC attractions amp up the fun meter.
“Surfing is like golf. . . it keeps knocking you down. But when you stay with it and catch that wave. . . magic.” --actor Dennis Quaid
Shop at spectacular South Coast Plaza in Costa Mesa, or get the surfer look in Huntington Beach, aka Surf City, USA.
With nearly twice as many professional teams as any other state, California is big league all the way. But the state’s sports scene goes far beyond football and baseball, with a diverse line-up of...