Walking Tours of Upper Newport Bay. Contact: State Department of Fish and Game. Telephone: (213) 590-5126 or Friends of Newport Back Bay.
Boating is the major activity. Large luxury cruisers leave continuously for Catalina Island of other points west and south. The harbor is often filled with colorful sails as sailboats skim along the waterways. Many regattas are held within the harbor's confines. The annual Ensenada Race, usually held the first week of May, is the largest off-shore sailboat race on the west coast with over 500 boats participating each year. Water skiing, swimming, surfing and skin diving are popular activities in the Newport area. Two piers and the back bay ecological preserve known for its diverse population of aquatic birds offer many recreational opportunities and scenic views.
Commercial facilities include boat yards, dry docks, nautical supply shops and yacht sales to service the needs of the average boater. Sightseeing and excursion boats as well as half day and full days fishing trips are continuously scheduled. Small fishing dories, motor boats, sail boats and paddle boards can be rented from private concessionaires. Specialty shops, including clothing, jewelry and gift shops are all situated near the harbor. Restaurants running the full gamut of style and cuisine, line the harbor's edge. The Newport Dunes in Upper Bay offers a launch ramp, calm water swimming beach and first class R.V. campground.
Many people enjoy celebrating July 4 at OC Parks, and with the holiday falling on a Saturday this year, even more people may visit. Planning your visit ahead of time and knowing the rules can help make for a more enjoyable holiday.
Most importantly, fireworks are not permitted at County parks on July 4 or any other day.
Expect increased crowds at parks, particularly regional parks. Parking lots may fill early, and once they do no additional vehicles will be permitted in the park. All shelters will be available only on a first-come, first-served basis and one person must be present at all times to hold the shelter. No reservations are accepted for July 4.
The clocks sprung forward early March 8, marking the beginning of Daylight Saving Time and OC Parks’ spring-summer operating schedule.
Starting March 8, the spring-summer hours for regional parks are 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. That includes Carbon Canyon, Clark, Craig, Mason, Mile Square and Yorba regional parks. Irvine and Laguna Niguel regional parks open at 6 a.m. and will close at 9 p.m.
OC Parks is pleased to introduce new parking passes that will allow visitors to use a single card to park at all County regional and wilderness parks and/or beaches.
The new “smart cards” replace the entry cards and stickers that were previously used for annual parking. Unlike the previous OC Parks passes, which were fixed to a calendar year (January through December), these smart cards are valid for 12 months from issue date and can be renewed annually. Moreover, for wilderness and beach locations which previously required a sticker affixed to a visitor’s windshield, these passes can be used with any vehicle. The price for the new cards remains the same as 2014.
Making Orange County a safe, healthy, and fulfilling place to live, work, and play, today and for generations to come, by providing outstanding, cost-effective regional public services.
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