Crystal Cove's 3.5 mile stretch is more of a day walker's beach than a swimmer's beach. Lots of people come by and pay the 10 dollar parking fee, just to don a fanny pack and bottle of water to walk all or part of the Crystal Cove length. Starting at the bottom, where the old El Morro Trailer Park people got booted out, a day hiker will see beautiful blue waters of Laguna Beach - I love how brilliant tourquoise blends into a bright royal blue out in the ocean. Occasionally a school of dolphins frolic nearby; sometimes a snorkler will swim around but no surfing is seen because the waves are consistently flat. Lots of rocks are in the water, and they become more numerous and striking the farther north one walks. Midway through this walk, hikers will see the Historic District, which is a crowded bunch of tumble-down, old homes. The Crystal Cove Society renovated some of the nicer beach cottages and regular people can rent these homes at reasonable rates - providing the tenets don't mind ghosts wandering those rental units at the dark side of Midnight! My friends stayed at the biggest rental cottage and after the strike of midnight, the kitchen cabinets started to open and close. The kitchen door flew open, and there wasn't much of a breeze outside! My friend got so creeped-out, but stayed hidden in bed, under a fluffy blanket and pillow. One of the gardeners there talks about a surfer kid who is seen wandering up the steep staircase late, late at night, when there is a full moon. But other than that, the place is quiet and no bad people even know where Crystal Cove is. Past the Historical cottages, the hiker will see more beautiful blue waters and at the northern-most end of the hike, there is a huge rock formation that resembles something right out of the Grand Canyon! There is a golf course there, and it's the point where Newport spoils the pure & wilderness of Laguna's Crystal Cove wilderness.\r
Pros: Off the path of familiarity - people just don't know about it.
Cons: Please don't go if you have a heart or breathing problem.