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Monday, December 21, 2009

57. Tide Pools at Abalone Cove

Explore nature at the beach = free yet quite romantic!
Abalone Cove Shoreline Park is a hidden gem in The City of Ranchos Palos Verdes right off Portuguese Bend. Here you can find 2 beaches (Abalone Cove and Sacred Cove), tide pools, bluff top viewing areas, 2 long yet easy hiking trails, and apparently fighting hermit crabs (see photo on right).
Sea anemones and star fish are also easily visible from the shoreline, but sadly abalone are nonexistent nowadays. A convenient parking lot is available for a mere $5 unless you can snag a spot along Palos Verdes Drive South and don't mind a 5-minute walk from the neighborhoods.

This place gets my vote for one of the best date ideas because it hits 5-in-1 categories: free, day date, romantic, outdoors and active. The park is open daily from Noon - 4 PM on weekdays and 9 AM - 4 PM on weekends, but is closed for some holidays. Make sure to stick around to enjoy the spectacular view of the ocean and Catalina Island during sunset, which is less than an hour after closing during this time of year. If you were not aware, the best time to go is during low tide, so that the most sea life will be exposed. The lowest tide of the year is expected on New Year's Eve around 2 PM. If you want to learn fun facts and don't mind the trek, take advantage of the FREE tide pool tours at Crystal Cove in Laguna Beach (next one is scheduled on 12/31, see Cheap Date Idea #44).

UPDATE 01/09/10: Point Vicente Interpretive Center offers a FREE monthly 2-hour activity, which includes tide pool tours of of Abalone Cove Shoreline Park. Any parking fees at PVIC are waived for 30 minutes before and after the event. Click HERE for a map of PVIC and more info. The schedule for 2010 include the following tide pool tours:
Feb 27th at 1 PM
May 22nd at 10 AM
Sept 18th at 9 AM
Nov 20th at 1 PM
Dec 18th at 12:30 PM.

UPDATE 04/05/10: "A Los Angeles Love" went on Cheap Date Idea #57 last month (read their blog post HERE).

Approximate cost of creative date idea = FREE + $5 Parking.
Actual value of the cheap date idea = Priceless.
Click here for map
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