August 18, 2017

Best of Dana Point: Top Spots for Icy Treats

For our last installment of best Icy Treats in Southern California beach towns, we are exploring that little hub of goodness settled between Newport Beach and San Clemente: Dana Point. Home of places to visit, like Salt Creek Beach, and endless things to do, like whale watching, kayaking, and exploring Dana Point Harbor, Dana Point is one of our favorite places for everything from seafood to ice cream to the best smoothies around! If you are planning your next Dana Point vacation or San Clemente vacation, we have got the best line up of icy treats to make your summer trip cool and fun!

Scoop Deck Ice Cream Shop
34531 Golden Lantern
Dana Point, CA 92629

If you are going to visit one icy treat location on our list, let this be the one! Carrying exceptional Lapperts ice cream from the islands of Hawaii, Scoop Deck offers well-done ice cream in a variety of flavors. We love this spot as one of the top things to do in Dana Point and things to do in Orange County because it offers a classic, yet unique dessert experience and also because you can enjoy your ice cream outside on their harbor front patio! Try the Cookie Monster flavor, Blueberry Cheesecake, Kona Mocha Almond, or Pink Salted Caramel for an extra special treat.

Scoop Deck is also attached to Coffee Importers coffee shop, making Scoop Deck an ideal place to stop for an afternoon pick me up. Get the kids some ice cream, hit Coffee Importers' espresso bar, or put the two together and order a cafe crema - french vanilla ice cream topped with espresso and whipped cream - then enjoy your coffee beside the harbor!

The Hive & Co.
2 Ritz Carlton Dr
Ste 104
Dana Point, CA 92629

For our friends with dietary restrictions, or just a craving for a cleaner treat, The Hive & Co provides the best of the best vegan and gluten free ice cream sandwiches! With adorable yellow walls, cute chalkboard signs, and causal order-and-go vibe, this pit stop is perfect for the whole family and offers both ice cream sandwiches and delicious popsicles for a mid-day snack. Try their famous coconut bliss ice cream sandwich (reviewers call it dangerously delicious, and the best ice cream sandwich they've ever had), or any of the endless fruity popsicle flavors!

The Hive & Co is located right next to Salt Creek Beach, so it's a perfect choice if you're visiting that area. And, if all of that wasn't awesome enough, Hive & Co is also a small boutique featuring unique jewelry and other artisan goods. Find a gift for someone special, or buy something for yourself, support the local community and enjoy the perfect treat at this local favorite!

Aloha Acai Bowls
Serving San Clemente and surrounding area

One of our best suggestions for daytime adventures with the family is finding a local food truck to enjoy. Aloha Acai Bowls travels around San Clemente and Dana Point and offers a solid menu of classic acai bowls-one of the most popular icy treats among Southern California natives. Find them at the North Beach market, Orange Farmers Market, or other surrounding community marketplaces for a chance to snag one of their delicious and refreshing bowls. If you happen to be lucky enough to spot Aloha Acai Bowls, we suggest trying the T-Street or the Lower’s, for the peanut butter and banana lover!

The Aloha truck is only active on the weekends, but if you're craving an acai bowl during the week there are other local options! Venture a little further inland and visit the highly rated Thrive Juice Lab in Laguna Niguel, or try the acai bowl at Coffee Importers .

Boneyard Beach Café
25300 Dana Point Harbor Dr
Dana Point, CA 92629

With their top notch burgers and garlic fries and beautiful beach views, Boneyard Beach Cafe is already worth visiting, but it gets better! Boneyard is also a hidden gem when it comes to frosty treats! This beach front restaurant offers Hawaiian style shaved ice and creamy soft serve, not to mention soda floats. You won't find fancy flavors or creative concoctions at Boneyard, but you will find a comfortable and tasty beach front experience! This is also the perfect place to grab-and-go, if you are looking for convenience amidst your busy day. We love the versatility of a restaurant like this, and recommend it for savory and sweet foods alike!

Take note: parking is through the state park at Doheny Beach so expect to pay $3/hour or $15 for the day. You might not want to pay just to visit a restaurant, but it's a great choice if you're planning to visit Doheny!

Nekter Juice Bar
32371 Golden Lantern
Ste G
Laguna Niguel, CA 92677

If you don’t live near a Nekter in your hometown, now is the time to try it! Nekter boasts delicious smoothies, acai bowls, and juices for Orange County dwellers and has branded itself as the place to be for heath nuts and young people all over the OC. Although it can be pricey, it is worth the one-time trip if you enjoy organic and fresh ingredients and are looking for a pick-me-up other than Orange County’s other sugary options. Try the Berry Banana Burst smoothie, the Tropical Cooler, or The Glow!

Rita’s Italian Ice
Lantern Bay Village
24845 Del Prado
Dana Point, CA 92629

Maintaining a consistent reputation for a family friendly and delicious experience, Rita’s Italian Ice pairs the creaminess of soft serve custard with the crisp flavor of Italian ice. If you are looking for an all-around solid dessert choice, Rita’s is it. Some of their classic flavors include the Mango with vanilla custard, Wild Black Cherry Ice, or Watermelon gelati! We are sure you will love their fun flavors, sweet soft serve, and reasonable prices!

Looking for even more icy treats?
Take a look at these top recommendations in some of our other favorite beach towns:

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