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Long Beach's playgrounds
Often described as quintessential Southern California seaside communities, Long Beach's Belmont Shore and Naples are known for their sandy beaches, calm lagoons, picturesque canals, elegant home-lined boardwalks and Second Street, a 15 block long shopping, dining and entertainment district featuring scores of restaurants, specialty shops, and boutiques.
Located just minutes east of downtown Long Beach, Belmont Shore (or the Shore as it‘s affectionately referred to by residents) and Naples have grown steadily over the years to become one of the region's most popular day and nighttime family destinations.
By day, visitors to the Shore can sunbathe or enjoy a cool swim at any one of the many lagoons in Alamitos Bay. For avid water sports enthusiasts, there are designated areas for windsurfing, jet skiing and water-skiing (equipment rentals are available). Those interested in more leisurely activities may want to simply stroll along Second Street, sampling its many shops and restaurants or take a scenic tour of nearby Naples. Like Venice, Italy—which served as the inspiration for Naples' master plan—the community was designed around an extensive canal system, giving the area a classical, romantic character. Romantic gondola rides in authentic Venetian gondolas and complete with serenading gondoliers allows visitors to capture the full romance of Naples Island.
Nighttime visitors to Belmont Shore and Naples can sample the area's varied nightlife, including numerous clubs, coffeehouses, and restaurants. Many of Second Street's retailers are also open during evening hours.
When it comes to shopping, visitors will find a variety of well-known retailers. Second Street is also well known for its shops and boutiques specializing in everything from swimming and surfing apparel and accessories to the latest European clothing and jewelry designs. Visitors are also encouraged to sample the area’s numerous coffee houses, restaurants, and pubs.
Just east of Belmont Shore and Naples lie two of Long Beach’s premier shopping centers—The Marketplace and Marina Pacifica Mall. Located in the southeast and northwest corners of Pacific Coast Highway and Second Street, respectively, the open-air centers include a number of high-quality retail shops, boutiques, restaurants and movie theaters. Whether shopping or dining at The Marketplace's many fine restaurants, its central waterscape provides a relaxing and inviting atmosphere. The nearby Marina Pacifica Mall includes many nationally known retailers as well as numerous smaller shops and restaurants.
Building on their reputations as activity centers, Belmont Shore and Naples host a number of special public events. The Belmont Shore Car Show, the largest one-day car show on the West Coast, takes place on Second Street each September, as does the annual Christmas Parade in December. Naples hosts its annual Boat Parade each December, where brightly decorated yachts and sailboats cruise the canals in one of the most spectacular parades of the season.
Whether it’s by land or by sea, Belmont Shore and Naples have their own distinct personalities and offerings for visitors.