Newport Beach is a coastal city in Orange County, California, United States. Take a look below for 20 fascinating and amazing facts about Newport Beach, California, United States.
1. Newport Beach is known for swimming and sandy beaches.
2. Newport Harbor once supported maritime industries, but today, it is used mostly for recreation.
3. Balboa Island draws visitors with a waterfront path and easy access from the ferry to the shops and restaurants.
4. The Upper Bay of Newport is a canyon, which was carved by a stream in the Pleistocene period.
5. The Lower Bay of Newport was formed much later by sand that was brought along by ocean currents, which constructed the offshore beach that is now recognized as the Balboa Peninsula of Newport Beach.
6. For thousands of years, the Tongva people lived on the land in an extensive, thriving community. Throughout the 1800s, Europeans colonized the land and forcibly removed and assimilated the Tongva.
7. Present day Newport Beach exists upon the unceded homelands of the Tongva people, and they have a historical and continued presence as the traditional caretakers of the land.
8. The State of California sold acre-plots of land for $1 a piece in the Newport area. Anglo-American inhabitation in the area grew substantially following the events of 1870 when a 105-ton steamer named The Vaquero, captained by Captain Samuel S. Dunnells (against warnings posted by surveyors) safely steered through the lower and upper bay of Newport where it unloaded its cargo.
9. James Irvine, after hearing the astonishing news, quickly traveled from his home in San Francisco to the San Joaquin Ranch. Meeting in Irvine’s ranch house near current day UC Irvine with his brother, Robert Irvine, and friend James McFadden, they all agreed that the newly found port should be named simply, “Newport” thus where Newport Beach gets its name. James McFadden built a long McFadden Wharf in 1888.
10. In 1905, city development increased when Pacific Electric Railway established a southern terminus in Newport connecting the beach with downtown Los Angeles.
11. In 1906 (with a population of 206 citizens), the scattered settlements were incorporated as the City of Newport Beach.
12. Settlements filled in on the Peninsula, West Newport, Newport Island, Balboa Island and Lido Isle. In 1923, Corona del Mar was annexed and in 2002, Newport Coast, East Santa Ana Heights and San Joaquin Hills, were annexed.
13. In 2008, after a long battle with the city of Costa Mesa, Newport Beach annexed West Santa Ana Heights.
14. Newport Harbor is a semi-artificial harbor that was formed by dredging Newport Bay estuary during the early 1900s. Several artificial islands were built, which are now covered with private homes: Newport Island, Balboa Island, Little Balboa Island, Collins Island, Bay Island, Harbor Island, Lido Isle and Linda Isle.
15. Newport Harbor once supported maritime industries such as boatbuilding, shipbuilding, and commercial fishing, but today it is used mostly for recreation. Its shores are occupied mostly by private homes and private docks. With approximately 9,000 boats, Newport Harbor is one of the largest recreational boat harbors on the U.S. west coast.
16. Commercial maritime operations today include the Catalina Flyer ferry to Catalina Island, harbor tours, sport fishing and whale watching day trips and charters, and a few small commercial fishing boats.
17. Newport Bay is divided by the Pacific Coast Highway bridge, which is too low for most sailboats and very large boats to pass under. North of the bridge is referred to as Upper Newport Bay, or the Back Bay. South of the bridge is commonly called Lower Newport Bay, or Newport Harbor. However the Back Bay also has harbor facilities, especially the marina and launch ramp at Newport Dunes Marina.
18. The north end of the Newport Harbor channels surrounding Lido Isle has a number of small business centers and was at one time used as a home by the fishing fleets. On the North East side of the channel, the Lido Marina Village now acts as the local port to many “Newport Party Boats” that can be rented for events, as well as small merchants and local restaurants.
19. Beachgoers have flocked to Newport Beach since the Pacific Electric Railway started bringing them in 1905. Attractions include the city beaches from the Santa Ana River to the tip of the Balboa Peninsula, Corona del Mar State Beach, and the beaches at Crystal Cove State Park. Newport Beach is known for good surfing, especially between Newport Pier and the Santa Ana River. At the tip of the Balboa Peninsula, The Wedge offers world-class bodyboarding and bodysurfing. Newport Pier and Balboa Pier draw fishermen and sightseers.
20. Newport Harbor is the largest recreational boat harbor on the U.S. west coast, and a popular destination for all boating activities, including sailing, fishing, rowing, kayaking, and paddleboarding.