Tours are an ideal way for anyone to learn more about a new locale without resorting to drastic measures such as running for mayor. Get acquainted with the California coastline the easy way with today's Groupon: for $18, you get two adult tickets to a 90-minute Christmas-decorated homes tour of Newport Bay from The Fun Zone Boat Company in Balboa (a $38 value).
The Fun Zone Boat Company regularly discounts tickets for children aged 5–11 ($7) and seniors older than 55 ($14). Children 4 and younger are free. Tours take place December 8–13 and December 19–23 twice a day with 5:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. departures.
For more than 60 years, The Fun Zone Boat Company has been shepherding passengers along a lively narrated Pacific Ocean voyage that caresses the California coastline while passing colonies of sea lions and the houses of Hollywood celebrities. During 90-minute Christmas-decoration tours, the captain and his crew of guests glide slowly past the homes formerly owned by celebrities such as Shirley Temple and George Burns and decked out in festive light displays. From the water, the vibrant, shimmering lights strung on mansions and their surrounding grounds create glowing likenesses of oversize gingerbread houses, bedazzled Christmas trees, and conga lines of fireflies. Guests may bring blankets, snacks, and drinks from home to keep cozy and nourished while spotting yachts still decked out in holiday decorations from the annual Parade of Lights. The M.V. Queen is a wheelchair-accessible boat and can be requested in advance, and all boats are equipped with restrooms.
Fun Zone Boat Company
In 1948, Fun Zone Boat Company’s predecessors began to whisk passengers on speedboat rides and lend out boats and paddleboards to visitors and locals in Newport Beach. Today, the business’s fleet of red, white, and blue vessels chugs up and down California’s coastline on guided tours and charter trips. Plush benches and open-air decks afford unobstructed views of sea lions lounging on Bell Buoy and Catalina Island in the distance. The boats’ captains also serve as guides, and pepper tours with anecdotes about celebrities’ mansions and diamond-studded sand castles. Charter trips double as an entertaining setting for catered corporate functions and birthday parties for 49–149 guests.