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How "Surf City USA" Earned Its Famous Nickname


While there are three other "Surf City USA"'s that fought for the coveted title throughout the years, Huntington Beach has reigned number one, especially in the hearts and minds of residents and lovers of Southern California.

Nestled on the Pacific Ocean just southeast of Los Angeles in between Long Beach and Newport Beach, Huntington Beach (fondly known as HB) has been home to the U.S. Open of Surfing since 1959.

About Huntington State Beach

In 1942, the city established Huntington State Beach to protect this Orange County treasure officially. The State Beach spans 2 miles from Newport Beach north to Beach Boulevard until Huntington City Beach starts. Surfers, water lovers, and adventurers alike flock to the Surf City of the West Coast for incredible ocean views, sunbathing, and some of the best waves in the country.

Huntington Beach is the ideal place to kick back for a vacation. Situated on the famous Pacific Coast Highway, the official State Park beach offers volleyball and basketball courts, fire rings for beach bonfires, and a paved multi-use trail from Huntington Beach to Bolsa Chica State Beaches.


Huntington Central Park

A sprawling 350 plus acre-park just a few minutes from the coastline, Central Park presents a wide array of outdoor activities for those who visit. There is a nature center, four playgrounds, frisbee and disc golf courses, restrooms, trails, a dog park, and on-site dining options.


Famous Beaches of the Area


There are five main beaches to enjoy when you visit Huntington Beach, including Huntington City Beach, Sunset Beach, Huntington Dog Beach, Huntington State Park, and Bolsa Chica State Beach. The 1,850-foot long Huntington Beach Pier can be found at Main Street and the Pacific Coast Hwy. The pier is open to the public (and free!) every day from 5 AM to midnight. Dogs, bikes, skateboards, and smoking are not allowed on the pier.

Huntington Harbour 

For even more to see and do on your trip to Surf City, USA, make a stop at the picturesque community of Huntington Harbour. Built in the 1960s, the Harbour is home to 5 human-made islands, over 500 bayfront homes, and an exciting array of outdoor recreational activities. Rent a private charter, enjoy a crisp beverage at one of the dining establishments, or go paddleboarding from the sandy beach.

Surf History in Huntington

While those in Santa Cruz or Surf City (New Jersey and North Carolina) argued HB's claim to be Surf City USA, those who are actual surf historians would disagree. If you want to learn more for yourself, be sure to check out the International Surfing Museum, the Surfers' Hall of Fame, and the Surfing Walk of Fame.

Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve

Located across the way from lifeguard stand 20, Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve is a 1,300-acre coastal estuary aimed to preserve the fragile ecosystems of the wetlands, salty and freshwater marshes, dunes, and more. With over 200 aviary species identified here, this Ecological Reserve is famous for birdwatching, photography, hiking, and guided tours.


Important Information for Your Visit

Whether you are coming for a special event like the U.S. Open of Surfing or to take the kids to Disneyland in Anaheim, or are simply coming to enjoy beach days while staying at the Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach Resort, Huntington Beach has a little West Coast magic for everyone. For more FAQs and to plan your trip in more detail, peruse the Surf City Visitor's Guide.

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READ MORE:Explore the 10 Best Beaches to Surf in North Carolina

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