The Unexpected Luxury of Newport Beach | My Family Travels
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Join me as I describe my adventurous journey to the state of California with my family and friends! My family, along with another family who is close to us decided to take a trip to Newport Beach in California. www.newportbeachca.gov/ We searched for a beach house to rent and came up with what seemed to be a beautiful little place. It was stated to be close to the beach and comfortable for seven individuals http://www.vrbo.com/65676 . We thought "perfect!", and even asked to add another person for a fee. However, when we arrived at "The Beige Beauty" it was 648 square feet total; a two-story home. You can only imagine the shock that came over us as we realized we had to fit two families of four into this "unexpectedly small" yet "said to be luxurious" place. We decided the best thing to do was make the best of it.

After some confusion, we settled in and, let me tell you, had the most amazing week of our lives. The size of the space our family shared literally brought us "closer together". It gave us the opportunity to cooperate and learn to share the space we had. We visited an array of places that anyone who visits California must be sure to check out!  First is The Wedge, an area of water where fifteen foot waves crash! What an exciting site it was to see each wave splash onto shore, making my heart jump! It is conveniently located near Balboa Island, a part of Newport Beach. 

Speaking of Balboa Island, what a magnificent, peaceful, and family-friendly place. To get to Balboa Island, we took a five minute bike ride to the ferry, which takes you across a small waterway to get to the island. On the island there are innumerable cute boutiques to be explored, and great fun to be shared with the family. My family and I visited a delicious shop called "Too Sweet" http://www.toosweetbalboaisland.com/caramel-candy-apples.html, where my mom and I shared a succulent caramel apple. I strongly recommend it. We also visited multiple clothing stores and the "Balboa Candy Store". It has every sweet treat imaginable! I had a big sugar daddy sucker and it lasted a while. Those are so hard to chew! All of the shops are conveniently located near one another down Marine Avenue on Balboa Island. 

Following our tasteful day on Balboa Island, we decided to take a slightly longer bike ride to the nearby Huntington Beach, a twenty-five minute bike ride from our beach house. We bought my dad his traditional shirt from Jack's Surfboards and ate at the most amazing Mexican food restaurant. It is called El Ranchito http://www.avilaselranchito.com/newport_beach.php, a restaurant originating from a family who decided to share their culture through their outstanding food! I shared fajitas with my dad, while my mother and sister ate enchiladas. The prices are great and the memories are even better. 

We spent our other days on the beach of Newport itself. Great memories were made that week, and on the last day we even reminisced over coffee at the local Starbucks, difficult to find because it is a blue sign rather than the traditional green. What I took away from this vacation means a lot to me. Due to the small beach house, I left much closer to my family. I will never think of the house as an annoyance because the great memories will last forever. My family and I made the best of the "unexpectedly small house" that we now believe to have been a luxury.  

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