There were not a lot of things I knew about Dana Point before visiting the city.
There are a good number of mega luxurious resorts there (Ritz Carlton, Monarch Resort).
You can get on a boat that takes you to Catalina Island from one of the docks.
The city is famous for its marina and sailing crews (I think).
Ohh, and the city is located in Orange County, south of Laguna Beach.
Since, in my case, curiosity triumphs feeble facts, I ended up visiting this city during a crisp fall morning.
I felt like a committee pulled a lot of strings to show the city’s best face. On the day of my visit, somebody painted an abstract masterpiece with the clouds, decided to give the ocean the most vivid blue hue, and elevated the temperature above the average.
Then, residents were having a blast everywhere. People were practicing yoga, paddleboarding, kayaking with their dogs, and filling every chair of the outdoor cafes.
It was a pleasure to walk next to the shoreline passing thru the Dana Cove, the Marina, and the Doheny State Beach. We pumped our heart rates ascending to the Bay Lantern Park (for great views from above).
Doheny State Beach
Bay Lantern Park
In all honesty, yes, I have wanted to visit this place for a long time but I came to take a look at the elephants. What elephants you may ask? The City of Dana Point was selected to host Elephant Parade’s first visit to the United States.
Elephant Parade is an open-air art exhibition of dozens of real-life size Asian elephant statues painted by renowned artists and/or people who stand out in different fields. The statues are exhibited for a determined amount of time throughout the chosen city. Once the exhibition period is over, the statues are auctioned. Part of the profits goes to The Asian Elephant Foundation.
In 2006, a father and son were inspired by the story of Mosha, a baby elephant who stepped over a land mine and was given a prosthesis. The pair founded Elephant Parade not only to help elephants with special circumstances but to help an entire species that is on the verge of extinction.
I really wanted to take a look at the exhibition since I have been in love with the nobility and intelligence of elephants since I visit a camp in Thailand years ago.
I know I barely scratched the surface of Dana Point. There are still miles of coast to discover (but next time the elephants are not going not going to be there, sniff, sniff).
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