Millions of dollars are spent every year around Southern California to attract tourists from out of state — and out of the country. This is, after all, one of the world’s most popular playgrounds. And when you live here, you tend to forget how blessed you are to have all this scenery and entertainment right at your beck and call.

Case in point . . . I live right down the street from Huntington Beach. Surf City, USA. Birthplace of The Beach Boys music and the epicenter for fun, fun, fun in SoCal. But funny thing, I don’t make an effort to get down there very often. And one of these days very soon, when I’m living far, far away from the beach, way inland, I’m going to regret it. I just know it.

So a few weeks ago, when I was invited to the Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach Resort & Spa for a quick overnighter, I decided to enjoy this experience in my neighboring town as a tourist would. Like a single mother from out of town, with two busy children, who needs a welcome break.

And I enjoyed it IMMENSELY, let me tell you!

The really GREAT thing about the Hyatt in Huntington Beach is that the beach is. Right. There.There’s a handy-dandy walkbridge from the hotel that arches over Pacific Coast Highway and lands you smack-dab on the sand. But I didn’t need to dip my toes in the ocean to appreciate it. I was perfectly content to stay put at the Hyatt, where nearly all the rooms have an ocean view. I’m pretty easy to please, and was thrilled just to be sitting out on my veranda with my Nelson DeMille novel, listening to the surf roll in and looking out toward the ocean occasionally as if to pinch myself, “Yep, Lynn, you really are in paradise!”

If you’ve logged on to TravelingMom.com it’s probably because you’re looking for summer travel ideas for your family, I’m guessing. Well, I HIGHLY recommend a trip to Southern California, specifically, to Huntington Beach. And if you’re in a resort state-of-mind, the Huntington Beach Hyatt Resort & Spa is THE place to stay in Surf City. It’s so relaxing, and there really is so much to do.

It’s even more family-friendly now with the recent opening of Slyders, the only water park on the Orange County coast. Slyders has three water slides, two fire pits, a poolside bar and grill to make lunch hour easy and convenient for moms with hungry kids, and private cabanas with flat-screen TVs and Internet access for us workaholic bloggers who can’t be too far away from our keyboards.Best part is, it’s free to all hotel guests!

You may want to make your reservations between July 4th and August 29th, which is when the Hyatt will offer its very popular Blues & BBQ on Saturday night. While you’re slurping on yummy, messy ribs and fancy umbrella drinks, you’ll be entertained by a Who’s Who of blues musicians from Southern California, with the ocean as your backdrop.

The Huntington Beach Hyatt has everything your family needs for a memorable and relaxing vacation in Southern California, including Camp Hyatt for the kids. And it’s not too far from Disneyland and Knott’s Berry Farm, either!

For a full rundown on all their activities and amenities, log onto huntingtonbeachhyatt.com

If you go to Hyatt and book at this hotel, Traveling Mom will receive a referral fee.