Spring in socal has been beautiful lately so le boyfriend and I decided to go to Balboa for our date.  It's a great place to go if you are looking to relax, but have the option to do some exploring.  We had a great time grabbing some ice cream exploring the island before taking the ferry over to the beach.  

You can read about out what we did in Balboa below or scroll down a little further for an additional date guide to Balboa! 

>>Our Day

We started off our day on Balboa Island and was lucky enough to find parking in one of the streets on the island.  Just double check the posted sign to make sure you are parking during valid hours to avoid getting a ticket! We didn't even bother looking for parking on the main streets and drove straight to the residential area to find a parking spot.

We walked down Marine Ave where all the speciality stores and restaurants are located.  We got a hand dipped ice cream bar and enjoyed it while looking at all the amazing homes by the water around the perimeter.  It is where all the really gorgeous homes are located ;)

We took the ferry over to the Balboa Peninsula and did a quick stop at the Balboa Fun Zone before spending the rest of our day at the beach.  

>>Plan B

We started off our day on the island, but you can switch it up and start your day on the peninsula.  Click here for more information regarding parking and fees in this area.  

Stop 1
Balboa Peninsula

There are many things to do on the Balboa peninsula.  You can begin your day by simply taking  a walk throughout the area and admire the surroundings or you can rent a bike and explore the peninsula even further.  If you are feeling a little bit more daring, there is even a place to rent seaways!

Stop 2
Balboa Pier & Balboa Fun Zone

Balboa Pier Fun Zone
One side of the Balboa Fun Zone.

Stop by the Balboa Fun Zone where you can play some of the classic arcade games, ride the ferris wheel, pop into some gift stores, and grab a quick bite at at one of the old school pizza shops.  The area in general is a little old and a little cheesy so don't go with high expectations. Nonetheless, it's still a fun place to make a quick stop.

The Balboa Pier is located right by the main part of the beach.  It is not as crowded or action filled as the one in Santa Monica, but it has it's own peaceful charm. There are people fishing, but most are walking through and enjoying the surrounding views.

Stop 3
Balboa Beach

View of the beach from the pier.

When the temperature starts to warm up or you want to rest from the exploring, head over to the beach and find find a nice spot to relax.  Cool off in the water or by laying on the sand while listening to the crashing waves. I recommend wearing shoes on the sand at all times because my boyfriend and I found some tar on the bottom of our feet!

Stop 4
Balboa Island Ferry

One of the Balboa Ferry's crossing the water.

The ferry is short and fun ride over to the other side. The price was a very reasonable $1.00 per person/car each way. The ferry can transport 3 cars at a time if youths to head home from the island rather than having to take the ferry back to your car at the peninsula. They ferry only accepts cash so don't forget to take some bills with you.

Stop 5
Balboa Island

Balboa Island Sugar 'N Spice Ice Cream
Heath Bar dipped ice cream from Sugar 'N Spice!

Once on the island, make your way to their main street, Marine Ave.  It's where all the specialty stores and restaurants are located.  (A quick note: a majority of these stores/restaurants close early on the weekends).  Try a hand dipped banana or ice cream if you get a chance.  They are delicious! 

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