Date Ideas in Long Beach CA

10 Budget-friendly date ideas in Long Beach CA

Long Beach has it all – from scenic views and gorgeous weather to affordable places that you can visit with your family and kids. When it comes to date night ideas, Long Beach CA doesn’t disappoint either.

Date Ideas in Long Beach CA

Here are ten budget-friendly date ideas in the Long Beach area.

Beautiful places to visit for free with your date

If you like nature and walks, then one of these three options might be the best date idea for you and your partner.

One of the most romantic places to take your date in Long Beach CA is the Earl Burns Miller Japanese Garden. You get an amazing, romantic experience, completely free! The garden has a Japanese motif and includes a pond with koi fish that you can feed. You can sit in the tea house and enjoy the tranquility around you. With a variety of gorgeous flowers to please your eyes, it’s no wonder the place is one of the most common locations for weddings.

The garden is located in the campus of California State University. It is open Tuesday-Friday, from 8:00 am to 3:30 pm and Sunday from noon to 4:00 pm. Unfortunately, it is closed on Saturdays and Mondays, so take this into account when planning your date.

El Dorado East Regional Park is another great option to spend time with your date. At daytime, the park offers many other attractions, in addition to the great landscape. You can call and reserve a picnic area, book a train ride or rent a pedal boat. The park stretches over 388.2 acres and includes playgrounds and fishing lakes as well. You can go cycling with your partner along the wonderful bike trails the park offers.

There’s an entrance fee you need to pay for your vehicle but it varies from $5 to $8 depending on the day.

Rancho Los Alamitos Ranch and Gardens is another free place you can take your date and learn some Long Beach CA area history while you are at it. It is one of the last working ranches, where you can enjoy beautiful gardens, old trees and escape from the hectic life of the city. You can also learn about the Bixby family who owned it. The ranch is open for visits Wednesday through Sunday 1-5 pm.

Best Long Beach street walks for dates

Another clever idea for a date is to visit some of the most interesting streets in Long Beach CA. Here is our selection of three unique places to visit:

If you don’t mind an unconventional date and you love flea markets, then the Long Beach Antique Market is the place to visit. More than 800 sellers gather together at the Long Beach Veteran’s Stadium every third Sunday. For an entrance fee of $6 from 6:30 am to 2:00 pm or $12 from 5:30 pm – 6:30 pm, you can find vintage furniture, toys, glassware and many more items.

If you like unique stuff like vintage clothing or furniture, then the area of East 4th Street centered around Cherry Avenue is the place to go with your date. The stretch is known as “Retro Row” because of the numerous vintage shops located on it. Most of them open at noon and close at 7:00 pm. If you get tired of walking, you can have a drink at Art du Vin or see a movie at the Art Theater.

Another great walk is along the Pine Avenue, especially at night. There are many restaurants and bars, where you can grab a drink. The night is anything but silent, since most of the restaurants turn into de-facto nightclubs, where you can dance. In other words, Pine Avenue is a great way both to start and end your date.

Great date ideas that are not for everyone

Here are a couple of *really unconventional date ideas.

  • Country Line Dancing at the Cowboy Country

If you love country music, the Cowboy Country is the right place for your date. This is a country music dance club that even offers lessons at 7:00 and 8:00 pm. The price for this entertainment is also quite affordable – only $3 on Wednesday and $5 on Friday and Saturday (the club works only on these three days). Besides, the entry is free from 6:00 to 7:00 PM.

  • Battleship USS Iowa Museum

Located in neighboring San Pedro, the Battleship USS Iowa Museum is great for WWII artefact lovers. The fee is less than $20 and you can also enjoy several special events such as Movies Under the Guns, where they play free movies on board the battleships.

A fancier date within your budget

For those who can’t imagine a date without a restaurant, we offer two interesting options. They are a bit more expensive, but are still budget-friendly.

  • The Queen Mary

The Art Deco theme is a rather romantic suggestion for a date, as is a drink or dinner aboard a ship. Queen Mary and its Observation Bar are a great way to enjoy the view while listening to different styles of music on Fridays and Saturdays – jazz, blues, Latin, etc. In addition to that, one of the top 100 most romantic restaurants in the U.S. is also to be found aboard Queen Mary. That is Sir Winston and you won’t regret taking your date there. The good news is that parking is free with restaurant validation after 6PM.

To end the night, explore the decks of the ship and enjoy the great view of downtown Long Beach CA.

  • The Sky Room

One of the great restaurants in Long Beach CA is The Sky Room, located on 40 S. Locust Ave, near Pine Avenue, on top of Breakers Hotel. As you can guess from its name, the restaurant offers magnificent view of the city. In addition to great food, you can also dance to live music playing mainly Latin or Swing on weekends. Note that this is a fancy restaurant so avoid casual wear and dress up for your date.

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Awesome hikes around Long Beach CA | Hiking Spots

8 Awesome hikes around Long Beach CA

Long Beach CA offers a number of beautiful hikes. Whether you live here or are just visiting, take some time to take in the sights.

Awesome hikes around Long Beach CA | Hiking Spots

Dominguez Gap Wetlands

The Wetlands are situated in Long Beach along the LA River. The trails are great for hiking, biking, bird watching, and horseback riding. If you want to bring your dog with, you can. You don’t have to go to the zoo when you can find animals such as red-tailed hawks and turkey vultures at Wetlands.

This Dominguez Gap Wetlands is actually a 2008 river project. $7 million were invested with the aim to restore the important ecological functions of water quality improvement, wildlife habitat, and aquifer recharge to the urban lower Los Angeles River.

Forrestal Ecological Reserve

32201 Forrestal Dr Rancho Palos Verdes, CA 90275

Forrestal Ecological Reserve is located about 12 miles away from Long Beach CA. It is a 25-minute drive to get to the reserve by car and it takes about an hour and a half by bike. Rocky hills on one side and the ocean on the other, it is a great place to go hiking, enjoy nature, and even take some cool pictures.

Ocean Trails by Trump National Golf Course

1 Ocean Trails Dr Rancho Palos Verdes, CA 90275

As the name suggests, it is located just by Trump National Golf Course. It is a coastal hiking destination with a breathtaking view. Hiking is not the only great activity you can enjoy. Other activities include paragliding and enjoying the beautiful picnic spots on the trail. Spring would be a great time to visit this place to enjoy more greenery and even see the whales if you are lucky.

Gum Grove Park

Crestview Ave & Avalon Dr. Seal Beach, CA 90740

Gum Grove Park has a relatively flat landscape and is pretty small (about a mile in length) so it is a great place for an easy hike. If you plan on going there with your dog, watch it closely as there is a chance of coming across coyotes. There are even signs all around the park asking to not feed the coyotes.

Bandini Canyon Trail Park

N Bandini St Los Angeles, CA 90731

This Park is another coastal hiking destination, located about 7 miles away from Long Beach CA. The trail and views are amazing.You can enjoy the view of the sea and cliffs, while hiking the sandy trail. There are some cactuses on the sides, so be careful, especially if you are hiking with kids.

The park dates back to1931, when Mr. George Peck, real estate developer and benefactor, donated most of the Park’s 4.8 acres. The land has been designated as open space since this time.

Willow Springs Park

2745 Orange Ave, Long Beach, CA 90806, USA

If you do not have a way to get out of town or simply do not have the time to spare, this park is for you. The trails are great and the surroundings are rocky and sandy. Small animals such as rabbits can be seen. Plus, the park is open 24/7.

Admiral Kidd Park

2125 Santa Fe Ave, Long Beach, CA 90810, USA

If you are taking kids along on your hike, this is the perfect place. Admiral Kidd Park is situated between two schools. It offers sports fields & courts, a recreation center with youth programs and a playground.

The park is open everyday between 6AM-5PM.

Wrigley Heights Dog Park

3401 Golden Ave, Long Beach, CA 90806, USA

Bring your dog here for a run or simply let it play with other dogs.

Wrigley Heights is open every day between 6AM-10PM

If hiking isn’t your thing, there are lots to do and amazing places to visit in Long Beach, California.

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Things to do in Long Beach CA

Things to do in Long Beach, CA

If you plan on visiting Long Beach or if you just moved to the city but you are not sure what the city can offer you, take a look at our list of interesting activities in Long Beach, CA.

Things to do in Long Beach CA

Aquarium of the Pacific

Roughly 1.7 million people visit the Aquarium of the Pacific annually to see over 11,000 animals, watch the 150 sharks at the shark lagoon, and learn interesting facts about the different marine species during the lectures and educational programs held there. Besides observing the marine animals you will get to take part in art exhibitions, art shows, festivals, lectures and see real-time ocean data on a huge globe. The Aquarium of the Pacific is very environmental-friendly and has been awarded for being the nation’s most energy-efficient business for 2009.

  • Address: 100 Aquarium Way, Long Beach, CA 90802-8126
  • Opening hours: from Sunday to Saturday from 9 am to 6 pm
  • Prices: $29.95 for adults, $17.95 for children, and $26.95 for seniors

Long Beach Waterfront

Here you can enjoy a beautiful view, have a delectable meal at the many modern restaurants, do some shopping at The Pike shop located at Rainbow Harbor, do some cycling or just take a walk and enjoy the view. You can visit the Yard House, the luxurious ship Queen Mary, or Parker’s Lighthouse which is on three levels, offers a two-story wine cellar and delicious seafood.

  • Address: 54th Place and Ocean Blvd., Long Beach, CA

Catalina Express

Up to 1 million people annually take part in the Catalina Express tours because they offer an unforgettable experience for the visitors and residents of Long Beach. The boat offers many benefits like panoramic viewing windows for you to take beautiful photographs and on-deck seating for a full experience. The fleet has eight vessels with Catalina Jet being the biggest having the capacity to carry roughly 500 people.

  • Address: 320 Golden Shr, Long Beach, CA 90802-4243
  • Prices: starting from $30 to $160

Shoreline Village

This place has so much charm and beauty that it is a must to visit it at least once. Here you can rent a fishing boat, yacht, or catamarans; in case you are new at sailing, you can enroll in some of the sailing lessons.

When you go to Shoreline Village, make sure to visit the Pelican Pier Pavilion where you can ride a carousel, play video games, air hockey, skeeball and more. The Pavilion is open Monday to Sunday from 12 pm to 11 pm. You can have your family photograph taken at Smile for the Birdie where you can pet, hold and learn more about their exotic birds. Working hours are Saturdays and Sunday from 12 pm to 7 pm.

  • Address: 401-435 Shoreline Village Dr, Long Beach, CA 90802-4549

Long Beach Convention & Entertainment Center

Events hit this magical place every week! There will be an Imprinted Sportswear Show this January 18th, International Salon & Spa Expo on January 27th, and the list goes on through the year. The center is 400,000 square feet big and in addition to its three multi-faceted exhibition halls – where conventions, trade shows, meetings or special events take place –there are a number of other facilities, including the Terrace Theater, the Rainbow Bridge, The Cove (Southern California’s premier street party venue), and a beautiful ballroom.

  • Address: 300 E Ocean Blvd, Long Beach, CA 90802-4825

Earl Burns Miller Japanese Garden

You can enjoy the beautiful weather and nature around you in this peaceful and relaxing 1.3-acre garden. If you need a short break from the busy city, this oasis is one of the best places to do just that.

  • Address: 1250 N Bellflower Blvd, California State University, Long Beach, CA 90840-0004
  • Working Hours: Tuesday through Friday from 8 am to 3:30 pm
  • Prices: free of charge

The Walter Pyramid

This is an iconic image of Long Beach and you must visit it, be it to watch a game or just to take a picture of the building. It is a multipurpose arena, currently, home to the state’s men and women’s basketball and volleyball programs. Seminars and other are also held here often. You could be one of the 200,000 annual visitors at Walter Pyramid. Those who have visited this place say the atmosphere is phenomenal.

  • Address: 1250 N Bellflower Blvd, California State University Long Beach, Long Beach, CA 90840-0004
  • Tickets: prices start from as little as $7 to $35

Long Beach Playhouse

If all the walking, cycling, and sightseeing have made you a bit tired and you need a calm night out with friends or family you can visit Long Beach Playhouse. Here you can watch plays like Mark Twain Tonight, Pack of Lies, Peter and the Star catcher, Flight, My Fair Lady, among many others. In near proximity, you will find good places to grab something to eat as well for a perfect end of the night.

  • Address: 5021 E Anaheim St, Long Beach, CA 90804-3214
  • Tickets: prices start from $14 to $27

There are so many memorable events and places to visit in Long Beach, CA! Honorable mentions are Naples Island, El Dorado Nature Center, Rosie’s Dog Beach, Belmont Shore, Pike and Rainbow Harbor, Museum of Latin American arts, Long Beach Museum of Arts, Bluff Park, Marine Park.

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Best Neighborhoods in Long Beach CA

Best Neighborhoods in Long Beach, CA

Long Beach CA is everything you want to find in a city – easy commute to neighboring cities, beautiful and clean beaches, nice and affordable houses, good infrastructure, countless job opportunities, active nightlife, decent schools, and more.

Long Beach CA has something to offer to all types of people – whether you are single, a newlywed couple, are young with a big family or happily retired, — there is a neighborhood for you! There are a few things that you need to keep in mind when choosing a neighborhood, like graduation rate, crime rates, house prices, population and parks. Proximity to some popular attractions such as the Art Theatre of Long Beach CA, the Aquarium of the Pacific or the Japanese Garden may also affect your decision.

Best Neighborhoods in Long Beach CA

Here are 7 most attractive neighborhoods in the area.

BIXBY KNOLLS

Most of the residents in this neighborhood are wealthy families who want to escape the big city. The neighborhood is safe with a low crime rate; population is approximately 4,400, unemployment rate is only 4.4% and an average house costs about $730,000. Bixby Knolls offers its residents a variety of social events, art exhibitions, live music concerts, festivals, green parks, good nightlife, nice and clean beach trails.  If you are energetic and outgoing, you will not go wrong if you choose this neighborhood.

BELMONT HEIGHTS

Most residents here are married or engaged couples in their mid 30s and 40s. Crime rate is very low in this beautiful neighborhood despite population being high – there are approximately 11,320 people here. Unemployment rate is only 5.0% and house prices are about $650,000. This is a fun neighborhood, too, with a variety of spas, internet cafes, restaurants, shops, malls, parks, bars and more. If you are bird lover you will love the colorful parrots resting on the palm trees.

NAPLES-MARINA AREA

This top neighborhood in Long Beach CA deserves the nickname “Venice in America.” It is located on three mesmerizing islands with a population of approximately 8,400 people and house prices around $830,000. It is a middle class, artsy neighborhood with very low unemployment and drop-out rates. One can easily walk in the streets of this neighborhood at night – it is very safe. There are a lot of picnic and barbecue areas, volleyball courts, sandy beaches, boats, nice cafes and restaurants, shopping centers, parks, and more.

EL DORADO PARK

This neighborhood offers so many parks, shops, attractions, and restaurants! There are approximately 560,000 people living there, yet the unemployment rate is only about 4.7% and house prices are approximately $600,000. El Dorado Regional Park has basketball and volleyball courts, softball and soccer fields, a skate park, picnic sites, disc golf course, tennis center, golf course, duck ponds, barbecue areas, roller hockey court, fishing lakes, and fishing pond.

The housing market is stable, the weather is relatively sunny and there are a lot of things to do in the neighborhood and a lot of places to visit like El Doro East Regional Park, El Doro Nature Center, San Gabriel River, El Doro Park West, El Doro Park Golf Course and Lilly Park.

THE PLAZA

Population here is not very dense: only 23,000 and the home price is quite reasonable – approximately $500,000. Unemployment rate is low – 4.2% and as you might have already guessed this neighborhood is very peaceful and family-friendly. There is a lot to do in this neighborhood thanks to the variety of places you can visit: shops, cafes, restaurants, golf fields, parks, and shopping centers. There are also a number of high schools in the neighborhood.

LAKEWOOD VILLAGE

This neighborhood offers beautiful houses like townhomes, duplexes, condominiums, modern and Victorian houses.  Population here is around 7,500. One of the issues, however, is the unemployment rate which is slightly high – 7%. Nevertheless, there are a lot of job positions for those who seek a new career, as well as enough entertainment sources for those who have more spare time. On the plus side, house prices are quite reasonable – approximately $600,000. Lakewood Village offers a lot of shops, malls, restaurants, cafes, parks, gyms, libraries, and decent schools.

EAST VILLAGE

The majority of the people you will see in this neighborhood won’t be families or newly married couples but rather young singles. Crime rates are low here, job can be easily found and schools are quite decent. Since mainly young people live in this neighborhood one can find a lot of social and cultural events, antique shops, cafes, shopping centers, entertainment programs, clubs and bars.

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What you need to know before Moving to Long Beach

What you need to know before moving to Long Beach CA

Long Beach CA is growing and attracts more and more newcomers. Not just from the US, but from the whole world. If you are looking for a new place to call home, then Long Beach CA might be that place.

Here are a few things to keep in mind before you make your decision.

It’s a really big city

Did you know that Long Beach CA is the 36th largest (most populous) city in the US? Impressive, right? Here you can expect to find everything that’s common in large US cities – a vast variety of places to eat, vivid nightlife, art events for every taste, and busy street traffic. And then, there are those things that make this place unique and distinguish it from any other in the USA.

It’s close to the ocean

What you need to know before Moving to Long Beach CA

That’s probably not a surprise to anyone. Long Beach is located right on the ocean shore, stretching 10 miles along the coastline. What people often miss about this fact is that there is a constant ocean breeze, which keeps the temperatures relatively low. Even though Long Beach is about 22 miles south of Los Angeles, normally it is 10 degrees cooler than in LA. Most of the time, you don’t have to worry about the exhausting heat that LA residents face. In addition, the summer season is marked by frequent morning fogs, that sometimes don’t go away until noon. Don’t expect any rains before winter, though.

It is not a good place for surfing

Yes, the waves break about a mile before reaching the shore, which makes Long Beach CA a bad surfing spot. Surfing aside, Long Beach has 10 miles worth of amazing, sandy beaches where you can have a wonderful time with your friends and family, or by yourself. Virtually any water sport is being offered here – including sailing (the Congressional Cap in April), diving, water skiing (Catalina Ski Race in July), water polo, and many more. You can often witness people playing beach volleyball, or practicing yoga in groups of hundreds. And of course, the most popular thing to do on the beach is laid down on the sand and enjoy life.

At The Rosie’s Dog Beach you can let your dog run free

And that’s the only beach in the county where this is allowed, so if you’re a dog lover you are going to appreciate it a lot. The best thing is that everyone knows that this is the beach for dogs. What you will find here is plenty of like-minded people, and plenty of dogs for yours to play with. What you won’t find is people who frown upon your dog for throwing sand on their towel or scaring their 3-year-old kid. The beach is open all day long – from 6 in the morning till 8 in the evening. Don’t forget to bring your pet’s license. Needless to say, aggressive dogs are not welcome.

You don’t have to get yourself wet if you don’t want to

There is much going on outside of the water and away from the beach. Long Beach has a lot of park and recreation areas to offer, where you won’t get your shoes filled with sand. Basketball, baseball, football, volleyball, are probably the most practiced. (Running? Everybody is running here.)

The most popular sporting event is the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach and that is the single largest event here. It takes place in April and if you are a fan, you most definitely want to see it. If you’re not a fan, you should stay away from downtown LB. It gets unimaginably crowded and there is no chance you’d find a parking spot.

The Long Beach Marathon is held in October and attracts about 50,000 participants. Like we said, everybody is running.

Your mind and soul will be happy, too

It’s not just your body. You can easily satisfy the needs of your mind and soul. May be because Long Beach CA attracts people from all walks of life, the arts, music, and culture scene are diverse and unique.

If you are interested in fine arts, there are plenty of art museums where you can spend your time. The Long Beach Museum of Art, the University Art Museum, the Museum of Latin American Art, The Pacific Island Ethnic Art Museum, and many more. There is a whole district here called “the East Village Arts District” where dozens of art shops and galleries give an opportunity for local and foreign artists to exhibit their work. Street art is taken to a very high level – the city has its own Mural and Cultural Arts Program to support that type of art.

If you have a sophisticated taste in music you’d be happy to learn that Long Beach is not all about Snoop Dogg. (No disrespect for Snoop Dogg). But no matter what your taste in music is, LB got you covered. There is a school of music named Bob Cole Conservatory of Music organizing classical, jazz, and world music concerts every year. Then we have the Long Beach Symphony, playing classical and pop concerts at the terrace theatre several times a year. There is, of course, an Opera House. And various music festivals are hosted in the city throughout the year. You can hear local bands playing live in many pubs around the city.

It’s not all rainbows and unicorns

Water and air pollution here is a serious problem. The city is one of the most polluted in all of the United States. Partly, this is because it is located between two large ports – the one of Long Beach and the one of Los Angeles. Ships and the trucks serving them are to blame for huge amounts of diesel exhaust and then the wind brings the toxic gasses right to the city. Water quality mostly suffers during the wet season (winter), when heavy rains pollute the Los Angeles River, which discharges in San Pedro Bay. Beaches here often get D or F grades for water quality during those periods. Each year, there are several days when beaches are closed for swimming because of water pollution.

Still, it is a great place to be. Education, healthcare, infrastructure – everything to meet your needs. Far enough from LA to allow for a much more relaxed lifestyle. And close enough to go there on a day trip. Give it a try. You would love it!

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