Long Beach California Guide And Information

Generally, when people are listing the ideal beach vacations, Long Beach isn't on that list. This is so, even though Long Beach is California's fifth largest city and occupies 52 square miles. It boasts a thriving population of about 481,000.


In fact, some people would say it's because it's so big that it's not listed as the perfect beach destination. However, people's misconceptions might be ill-founded. In fact, there are so many attractions and things to do in the Long Beach area that one would scarcely have time to get bored if he vacationed in this part of the world. Let's take a look at just a few of the things to do and see in Long Beach.


• The Queen Mary. This is a historic White Star ocean liner with a rich past. It has served as a troop transport during World War II and is even listed as a historic place on the National Register. There are several tours of the ship that you can take; one of the more popular ones is the "Ghosts & Legends" tour. On The Queen Mary, you'll find several restaurants, a hotel, even a shopping complex. For information, call 562-435-3511.


• The Aquarium of the Pacific is believed to be one of the nation's largest aquariums. It has 19 major habitats, with almost a thousand species inhabiting them. Call 562-590-3100 to find out more.


• The Scorpion (A Russian Foxtrot Submarine). This is an actual Cold War Soviet sub, with self- guided tours available, and a retired submarine officer there to answer questions. The passages and hatches are quite small, so those who are claustrophobic will want to avoid this attraction. For details, call 562-432-0424.


• Long Beach Museum of Art. This is a small art museum, but features a lot of 20th century art, mostly by California artists. Call 562-439-2119 to find out more.


• Gondola Getaway. This is a romantic boat ride for couples, through the canals of Naples. They even provide cheese and crackers. Call 1-562-433-9595 for more information.


• Recreation Park Golf Course. Yes, there's plenty of golf available in Long Beach, and this is one of the best spots to find it. It features 18 holes on its rolling terrain with various types of trees on the fairways. Call 562-494-5000 to learn more. Another good one is Skylinks Golf Course, which features a Scottish links-style course. Call 562-421-3388.


• Belmont Plaza Pool is an Olympic-style and size indoor swimming pool that is much-used for major swimming events. However, when there's no event going on, the public is invited to use it. To find out more, call 562-570-1805.


• The Long Beach Performing Arts Center features weekly performances by the International City Theatre and the Long Beach Symphony Orchestra. To find out their current schedule and prices, call 562-436-3661.


There are, of course, literally hundreds of restaurant possibilities in Long Beach, so it's impossible to justice with a listing here. Suffice it to say that there are Mexican, Italian, German, Chinese, Japanese, and even American establishments just waiting to serve you.