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The Top 5 Museums Near Newport Beach, California

The Top 5 Museums Near Newport Beach, California

Enhance your trip to Newport Beach by visiting one of the great museums near Newport Beach. Team


2 min read

August 25, 2023

Newport Beach, a picturesque coastal city in Southern California, is often recognized for its stunning beaches, upscale shopping, and vibrant nightlife. Yet, just beyond its sandy shores lies a treasure trove of cultural and historical sites that offer a deep dive into the region's rich history and art. Here's a look at the top five museums near Newport Beach that are worth a visit.

Orange County Museum of Art (OCMA)

Located just a short drive from Newport Beach, the Orange County Museum of Art stands as a testament to the rich artistic culture of the region. OCMA features an impressive collection of modern and contemporary artworks, spanning from the early 20th century to present day. With its dynamic exhibitions that range from painting and sculpture to digital and installation art, OCMA provides a comprehensive view into the ever-evolving world of art.

Balboa Island Museum

Balboa Island, a charming enclave within Newport Beach itself, boasts its own museum that celebrates the history and heritage of this beloved destination. Situated in a historic building on Marine Avenue, the Balboa Island Museum offers visitors a glimpse into the island's storied past. With exhibits covering everything from the development of the island to its famous residents and popular traditions, this museum offers a deep dive into what makes Balboa Island truly unique.

Marconi Automotive Museum

For automobile enthusiasts, the Marconi Automotive Museum is a must-visit. Located in Tustin, just a short drive from Newport Beach, this museum houses an impressive collection of high-performance cars and motorcycles. Founded by businessman Dick Marconi, the museum showcases a plethora of exotic cars, including Ferraris, Lamborghinis, and rare vintage models. In addition to being an automobile paradise, the Marconi Automotive Museum also supports various charitable causes, adding a philanthropic edge to your visit.

Lyon Air Museum

Situated on the west side of John Wayne Airport, the Lyon Air Museum offers a fascinating journey into the world of aviation. With its impressive collection of World War II-era aircraft, military vehicles, and memorabilia, this museum is a testament to the innovation and bravery of those who took to the skies during tumultuous times. The meticulously restored aircraft, ranging from the B-17 Flying Fortress to the Douglas C-47 Skytrain, provide visitors with a tangible link to the past, making history come alive.

Sherman Library & Gardens

While it might be unconventional to categorize the Sherman Library & Gardens as a museum, this 2.2-acre property is truly a living museum of plants. Located in nearby Corona del Mar, this botanical oasis features a wide range of themed gardens, from tropical conservatories to succulent-laden landscapes. The on-site library is home to a collection of historical materials focusing on the Pacific Southwest, allowing visitors to delve into the region's past amidst the serene beauty of nature.

In conclusion, while Newport Beach might be best known for its sun-soaked shores and luxe lifestyle, the city's proximity to a variety of museums offers both residents and visitors a chance to enrich their understanding of art, history, and nature. Whether you're an art aficionado, history buff, or simply looking to explore, these museums near Newport Beach promise enlightening experiences for all.

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