No matter when you make your way to Newport Beach, there’s always something fun and exciting on the calendar. The following are some of the top annual events to make sure you experience!

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January and February

While it’s not an event to enjoy only at the beginning of the year, whale watching is at its peak between January and February in Newport Beach, making an outing well worth adding to your itinerary. Whales migrate through the Newport Beach waters between December and April, but January and February can bring amazing sightings. If you book with a tour company that offers hydrophones onboard, you can listen to whale songs below the waves as you observe grey whales and blue whales following their annual migration paths.


Film fanatics will want to be sure to plan their trip to Newport Beach for April when the annual Newport Beach Film Festival comes to town. More than 350 films are showcased at this event, created by creative minds from around the globe. There are opportunities to enjoy shorts, animations, documentaries, features, and more.


Movie mania continues into May with the Newport Dunes Movies on the Beach series. Each Friday and Saturday evening at dusk, guests are invited to make their way to Newport Dunes Resort and enjoy an open-air film for just $10 a person. It’s a fun and inviting family event to enjoy while you’re in tow.


If Independence Day fun brings you to Newport Beach, you’ll be right on time to enjoy the annual fireworks show. The city puts on a spectacular display on the 4th near the water complete with food, raffles, carnival games, tournaments, and music as well. It’s a great way to celebrate the nation in style.


When you’re looking to enjoy a flavorful stay, head to Newport Beach in September so your trip coincides with the Annual Taste of Newport experience. This is a three-day event that showcases over 30 restaurants and includes live entertainment and wine tastings too. Over 75,000 people typically take time to enjoy this Fashion Island-based festival making it a vibrant and exciting experience from start to finish.


Enjoy time on the sand in Newport Beach in October when you take part in the annual Sandcastle Contest. Hosted by the Commodores Club of the Newport Beach Chamber of Commerce, this unique event brings thousands to the shoreline to create incredible sculptures and try to earn top prizes. It’s as fun to participate in as it is to observe and is held at the Corona del Mar State Beach each year.


As the holidays begin to roll in, Newport Beach lights up in style. Tree lighting ceremonies kick off as early as November with a top event being the tree lighting at Fashion Island. Make your way to the Bloomingdale’s Courtyard around 6:00 pm on lighting night to see the tree come to illuminating light with over 17,000 sparkling adornments.  Santa typically shows up to enjoy the fun too while the holiday performances make it all even more entertaining.


Don’t miss out on the annual Newport Harbor Christmas Boat Parade when you’re here in December. This free-to-the-public event showcases boats lighting up the harbor in true holiday form for five nights as they make their way from Collins Island out over the water.

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