Balboa Fun Zone#6 in Best Things To Do in Newport Beach
Price & Hours
The Balboa Fun Zone lives up to its name. The small park is full of fun activities for children, and with views of the Pacific, adults are sure to enjoy their time as well. This boat yard-turned-amusement park has been in operation since the mid-1900s. Over time, more and more activities have been added, and nowadays there are enough features to keep you busy for hours.
The main attraction is the Ferris wheel that overlooks the sea and provides panoramic views of the rest of the Balboa Peninsula and beyond. It costs $5 to ride, and children younger than 16 years old must be accompanied by an adult. The Ferris wheel is independently owned, so its operating hours differ from the rest of the park; it's open daily from 11 a.m. until 9 p.m.
Other kid-friendly features include arcade games and the Happy Swing – a large swinging ride that will make your stomach drop. There is also a Discovery Science Foundation outpost on the boardwalk called OceanQuest Newport Beach. Here, children can enhance their science education with exposure to different marine life exhibits and hands-on activities. To check out upcoming events at this facility, visit the official website. The whole area is free to explore but the Happy Swing, OceanQuest as well as other rides and attractions charge separate fees.
The food options here go way beyond your typical amusement park hot dogs and hamburgers: There are taco stands, sushi to go and Italian and Thai options, among many others. There are also a variety of shops around the park area, including boutiques, surf shops and eyewear stores. If you're looking for water sports, boat rentals or whale watching excursions, this is a good place to start. Parking and public restrooms round out the amenities at the park. Balboa Fun Zone is open year-round; it operates from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 11 a.m. until 6 p.m. Friday through Sunday. For more information, visit the Balboa Fun Zone website.
More Best Things To Do in Newport Beach
#1 Corona Del Mar State Beach
Corona Del Mar State Beach is one of the most popular shorelines in the city – and for good reason. Its calm surf makes it ideal for swimmers, and the half-mile-long stretch of sand means it's easy to find a spot to sunbathe. The beach is hugged by towering cliffs and provides a picture-perfect backdrop for a romantic date night or a family photo.
Near the parking lots, you'll find many volleyball nets for public use. The beach offers public restrooms, outdoor showers and an array of picnic tables. There are also fire pits for public use during normal beach hours (from 6 a.m. until 10 p.m.) available on a first-come, first-served basis; you'll have to bring your own wood and fire starters, though.
Explore More of Newport Beach
If you make a purchase from our site, we may earn a commission. This does not affect the quality or independence of our editorial content.