Best Waterfront Restaurants in Orange County

Driftwood Kitchen Restaurant in Laguna Beach, CA
Photo: Driftwood Kitchen website

Sunny Orange County boasts miles of beautiful beaches to enjoy. Along the sand and surf, there are also waterfront restaurants that combine mouthwatering food with scenic views like none other. How do you sort out the best from the rest?

Here are five of the best to keep on your radar when you’re looking for a great meal with an amazing view:

The Deck

Burgers at The Deck Restaurant in Laguna Beach, CAPhoto: The Deck Facebook Page

Located in Laguna Beach, this waterfront restaurant is “decked out” when it comes to fresh seafood, refreshing cocktails, and of course, ocean views. What’s more relaxing than enjoying a cocktail and a meal by the water?

Besides fresh seafood plates like steamed clams and mussels, The Deck also offers meat dishes like The Mediterranean Branzino Filet. This meal is served with a celery root puree and a shaved fennel and arugula salad. Pair it with a signature cocktail like The California Cooler and you’ve got yourself a winner. The Deck is open Monday-Sunday from 11a.m. -10p.m.

Driftwood Kitchen

Just a few steps down from The Deck in Laguna Beach is Driftwood Kitchen. Breathtaking views of the Pacific are always on the menu here along with a variety of breakfast, lunch, and dinner favorites. Start your morning off right while you watch the waves crash and enjoy a Laguna Beach Omelet, made with crab, purple haze goat cheese, and avocado skillet potatoes. The breakfast menu is available daily from 9a.m. – 11a.m.

Stop by for dinner and choose one of the many fresh seafood dishes like the New Bedford Sea Scallops. Driftwood Kitchen is also open for lunch daily as well as Sunday Brunch. It’s always a relaxing time with great food and ocean views.


Watertable Restaurant in Huntington Beach, CAPhoto: Watertable Facebook page

Whether you’re a guest at the Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach Resort or are simply looking for a restaurant with a waterfront view and amazing food, Watertable is it. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are covered here with a menu full of “West coast comfort food with attitude.” What exactly does that include?

Start with a roasted tomato and spinach omelet for breakfast. For dinner, try the Chilean Sea Bass or Lobster Tail cooked the way you like with the sauce and side of your choice. The menu’s versatility is the best! Watertable is located right along the Pacific Coast Highway at the Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach Resort.


Duke's Restaurant in Huntington Beach, CAPhoto: Duke’s Facebook Page

Here’s a fun fact about this Huntington Beach waterfront restaurant. Huntington Beach is best known for its surfing and beach lifestyle, and it was here that Duke Kahanamoku introduced surfing back in 1925. Shortly after that, Huntington Beach became known as Surf City USA. Fast forward a few decades, and the surf’s still up!

Add Duke’s waterfront restaurant to the mix with its Hawaiian style menu and it’s a win-win for everyone. Some of the unique menu items include a Miso Grilled King Salmon. This dish comes with sustainably raised jasmine rice, arugula and squash salad. Be sure to make this stop along the Pacific Coast Highway Tuesday-Sunday for lunch or dinner.

Beachcomber Cafe

Beachcomber Restaurant of Crystal Cove beach in California
Photo: Beachcomber Facebook page

The Beachcomber is located in the heart of Crystal Cove, one of the most beautiful beach areas in Southern California. In order to get to the restaurant, you’ll need to park in the Los Trancos parking lot located on the east side of the Pacific Coast Highway. From here you can either take the 10-minute walk or hop on a shuttle for a small fee.

Once you get to the Beachcomber look for items like the Real Deal Clam Chowder and Lobster Linguini Pasta; if you’re in the mood, try their fabulous Bloody Mary! Enjoy scenic beach views whether you visit for breakfast, lunch or dinner; you can’t get any closer to the beach than this!

Orange County is full of so many great restaurants that the hardest part is choosing just one! Take this list with you the next time you’re in the neighborhood and want a taste of Orange County.