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Fodor's Southern California 2014
Balboa Pavilion Review
Located on the bay side of the peninsula, the Balboa Pavilion was built in 1905 as a bath- and boathouse. Today it is home to a restaurant and shops; it also serves as a departure point for Catalina Island and harbor- and whale-watching cruises. Look for it on Main Street, off Balboa Boulevard. Adjacent to the pavilion is the three-car ferry that connects the peninsula to Balboa Island. In the blocks around the pavilion you can find restaurants, beachside shops, and the small Fun Zone —a local kiddie hangout with a Ferris wheel and ExplorOcean, an interactive nautical museum. On the other side of the narrow peninsula is Balboa Pier. On its end is the original branch of Ruby's, a 1940s-esque burger-and-shake joint.
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