7 Best Beaches in California – [Location + Best time to Visit]


It was California and it’s beachgoers that made a beach vacation the most ‘in thing to do’. Gradually going for a vacation on a beach was something that began to be considered classy. People have begun to reconnoiter and have often zeroed in on to California as the most preferred beach destination.

That ain’t wonder because most beaches that are activities galore are present in no other place as much as they are in California. After much scouting, we have come down in favor of these beaches in California.

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Pfeiffer Beach – Big Sur – visit the beach for the picture-perfect photograph, rocks, and the color of sand:

Pfeiffer BeachWhen we hear of a beach, we often think of swimming! Well, not all the beaches are tamed and some are naturally fierce. Pfeiffer beach certainly is categorized under a beach that is not safe for swimming but perfect for pictures, adorning your swimsuit and getting wet at the shore.

Observe the purple-colored sand and go home with an activity, trying to understand how the sand was purple? The beach also seems to have heavy current and mostly a high tide, which is perfect for that slow-motion shot with you in the foreground.

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Location: It is located in Big Sur city in California.

Famous For: The beach is famous for the Keyhole Rock. The natural arch that is formed at the base observes the last daylight as it can pass through it.

The sunset at the beach is stupendous as claimed by professional photographers who often display their passion towards the field by clicking heartwarming pictures of the sunset. The north end of the beach has unique purple sand that comes from manganese garnet rocks in the cliffs and is also said to be formed because of the rainfall.

Entry Fee: $10 is the entry fee that  you pay to get to this contemporary beach with hues and rocks

Best Time To Visit: The best time to visit is between September to November; however, since Big Sur is mostly sunny throughout the year, the tourist season begins in April only.

How To Reach: Once you are in Big Sur, and at the Sycamore Canyon Road, you are at 1.1 miles on the south entrance to Pfieffer Big Sur State Park. You may drive here and park the vehicle at the beach parking which is charged at $10 each day. Trailers and RV’s are not allowed, as the driveway to the beach is rather narrow.

Where To Stay: If you are adventurous, opt for camping at the Pfeiffer Camping Grounds, Hyatt Residence Club Carmel, Highland Inns, Pine Inn, and Carmel Mission Inn are some of the lovely places that are comfortable and budget too.

Capitola Beach – Sands and beautiful Seaside vibes await you:

capitola beach
Image Credit Flickr

This beach has mesmerizing and colorful seaside vibes with little colorful structures that would perhaps remind you of Roman culture. These add to the romance with the beach and you go crazy clicking pictures.

Don’t get entangled in that only, the beach also allows you to surf and is a perfect place for soaking up the summer sun. You are most likely to see a lot of urban agglomeration waiting for a dip or just retreating before they go back to their routine lives. 

Keep harping on the beach and you will get to soon the birds at the lagoon formed by Soquel Creek behind the beach. More exploration will unravel the fishing pier, called the Capitola Wharf. Relentlessly, looking out for good, you will be definitely credited with goodness!

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Location: The beach is located in Capitola, which is a city in Santa Cruz County. The beach can be found on the coast on Monterey Bay.

Famous For: The beach is famous for being the oldest, largest and the trendiest beaches on the West Coast.

Entry Fee: There is a metered Street Parking, so if you have driven here or have a vehicle, you have to pay according to the number of hours you stay at this beautiful beach. Per hour price that you have to pay is $1.00

Best Time To Visit: September and October are the best times to visit since the weather is favorable. The temperatures are rather warm and less foggy

How To Reach: There are a number of ways by which you can reach this beach. First one being the bus, which you can board from the Santa Cruz Metro Center-  Lane 4 and get down at the Capitola Mall on Lane 2. From here, an approximate walk of 20 minutes will be required to reach Capitola beach.

Another way and the quickest way to travel is by a taxi. It takes all of 7 minutes to reach the beach from Santa Cruz at a cost of $27 -$33.

Where To Stay: Some of the places that are a stone throw away from the beach are Capitola Venetian Hotel, Capitola Hotel, Capitola Beach Suites, and Monarch Cove inn

Santa Monica Beach – Perfect blend of urban and natural way of spending time with family

santa-monicaThe beach is visible from a distance as you can spot the giant Ferris wheel with hoards of people enjoying their vacation, or just the sunny weather. With the beach covering 245 acres and 3 miles, there are many shops that you can explore and buy whatever you want.

Make sure when you come to the beach, you haven’t eaten much, as the place is a food option galore. With an influx of stalls selling delectable Lobster dishes, you will enjoy these immensely after a long day at the beach.

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Location: The beach is located on the west of downtown Los Angeles.

Famous For: The beach is famous for a variety of water sports and has a very popular surfing spot. This spot lies between Pacific Palisades and Venice Beach. The beach also has a Pacific park Amusement Park that keeps kids and adults busy alike.

Entry Fee: Although there is no entry fee to walk on the beach; however, nearby lots charge some parking fee. This fee is variable and depends upon the number of the LOT and the hours of operation. It could vary anywhere between $6 to $15 for one day.

Best Time To Visit: Although crowded during the summers, the beach is worthy of a visit only during the summers. You may avoid going to the beach on weekends and enjoy it on weekdays so you can get the sandy experience in full swing.

The months of May and June are not recommended owing to the no sun days and fog during these days.

How To Reach: Santa Monica is about 8 miles from LOS Angeles International Airport, so you can opt for car travel via the Lincoln Boulevard (if you are coming from the airport).

If you wish, you can also opt for Bus. You may take Route number 3 or Rapid 3 from the Los Angeles Bus Center which costs about $1.25 and drops you at Santa Monica

Where To Stay: Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel, Shore Hotel, Wyndham Santa Monica At The Pier, and Hotel Shangri La, are luxury accommodations near this very famous beach in California that are stalwarts in their profession and service. 

Coronado Beach – The crowned Beach of the United States:

coronadoDreamy sunsets, perfect weather with warm waves, flawlessly sandy, the beach is a popular visit for families and couples. Once you are here, you will find yourself immersed in the spirit of azure waters inclining you for a dip that you cannot ignore.

The backdrop of this beach is truly breathtaking with unique red-colored conical buildings (Hotel Del Coronado). The presence of mica in the sand makes the beach beam with golden light. With less to say and more to explore, the beach is exemplary and ideal for weekend getaways.

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Location: It is located in Coronado City in California, and is about 10 miles north of the Mexican border.

Famous For: Coronado beach is famous for its scenic beauty, and the fact that it was featured in ‘Some like it hot’, along with the famous Marilyn Monroe.

The name of this beach is yet another famous aspect which means, ‘The crowned One’ in Spanish and incidentally, the beach has been Crowned as the best beaches of the United States’.

Entry Fee: The entry to the beach is free. If you are driving, then also, the parking is free. If you wish to tour the beach on a ferry, you need to shell out $4.25 per person, one side.

Best Time To Visit: Visit this amazing beach between July and September. The beach during this time is sunny much unlike the months of May and June.

How To Reach: Reach the 5 freeway that lies to the south of downtown San Diego. From there take the Coronado Bridge which is toll-free and move towards the bay to Coronado Island.

After you cross the bridge you will be on 3rd Street. Once you take the left turn on Orange Avenue, continue following the red building called the Hotel Del Coronado. You will find yourself on Bay Road.

Where To Stay: Glorietta Bay Inn, Coronado Island Marriott Resort & Spa, Gaslamp Quarter Hotel, and Hotel Del Coronado, Curio Collection by Hilton. All these are luxury accommodations and you need to shell out hefty amounts to enjoy the luxuries that are absolutely worth it.

Treasure Island beach – Be here for a dip in clean water:

Treasure Island beach A dip in the mild temperate waters, snorkeling, and hiking on the rocks are some of the activities that can be conducted here. These activities are a vital feature of this beach, making it popular.

Moreover, the Coves that are naturally formed here make it even more favorable for the couples who wish to spend some time gazing at the dazzling sun.

The beach is one of the most sought after beaches in the United States! So be here and walk that concrete ramp that is unique around the beaches.

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Location: The beach is located in Wesley Dr, Laguna Beach.

Famous For: The beach is famous for tucked away coves which is where you will find most couples. It is also famous for the fact that the beach is pet friendly and you can get your dog here and unleash it within the fenced area.

Entry Fee: There is no entry fee to this beach, in fact, even the entry to the park near the beach is free. However, if you are parking at LOT 8 and LOT 7 off Wesley Drive and adjacent to Montage Resort respectively, you need to pay per charges.

Best Time To Visit: Although the tourist season isn’t at its peak during the fall and spring months, for this beach these seasons are favorable. So May, June, September, and October are the best months to be here. The weather is mild and good for a dip and water activities

How To Reach: The quickest way to reach this beach is by Towncar, Shuttle, Taxi or you drive on your own. All these options take approximately 30 to 25 minutes to reach the beach from Tampa International Airport.

Where To Stay: Seaside Laguna Inn & Suites, Montage Laguna Beach, Laguna Beach, and Lodge are the most beautiful places to stay around the beach. You will find yourself in complete comfort at these places with great services

Newport Beach – Adventurous and luxurious features are trending at this beach in California:

newport beach Millions of visitors each year, Newport Beach has its very own distinct Sunset. It is the superlative degree of beautiful where you can see the dusk breaking into the night with blue shoreline diminishing into the grey night. During the day, you can thoroughly enjoy the sand, ocean, boardwalk, and the pier. 

If you are an enthusiast who loves the outdoors, you will admire the cycling trail, long walks, hiking routes and of course some sailing. Besides enjoying the natural elements of the beach at Newport, you can indulge in aspirational hobbies such as wine tasting, cultural arenas, and cruises that are designed for you to view the magical sunset.

There will not be a dull moment at this amazing beach in California and perhaps, it is this reason why you are reading about it here!

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Location: This beach is located in Orange County, California

Famous For: Being famous for surfing and for sandy beaches, the sunset here also is dreamy and mesmerizing which calls for lots of pictures. It is also famous for swanky and classy restaurants, and shopping areas.

Entry Fee: There is no entry fee to walk here, you need to pay a fee for the activities you indulge in

Best Time To Visit: The best time to visit the beach is between March and May and then from July to September which are the warmest months of the year. Nevertheless, the temperatures are always favorable as this is a temperate zone.

How To Reach: Take the 5 or 405 freeways south to the 55 freeway south towards Newport Beach. Continue staying on this 55th until it ends. Perpetual movement on this road and you will find yourself at the Balboa Blvd. Walk your way from here to the Balboa Peninsula and you will begin to see the shoreline.

Where To Stay: Enjoy some spa, luxurious pool and a regal stay at The Resort At Pelican Hill, Ramada by Wyndham Costa Mesa, Newport Beach Marriott Hotel & Spa, and Newport Beach Hotel, a Four Sisters Inn.

La Jolla – Crescent shaped beach line that is very attractive:

la jolaWhen the blue shoreline meets the radiant skies, you will know you are at the shores of La Jolla Beach in California. The color of the water here is rather light and perfectly matches that of a sunny sky.

The beach is perfect for swimming and also pets seal pups and seals which come under a prohibited area and visitors cannot touch and pet them.

When the weather conditions are great, you may plunge to snorkel and go for scuba diving too. The famous beach has had many stars who have lived here at some time of their life, making it all the more famous in California.

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Location: It is located in San Diego, in California

Famous For: Let’s talk of the great things first, the beach is famous for the Scripps Institute of Oceanography and the Salk Institute. However, what is not so pleasant, but you must know is the fact that the roads here are congested and are mostly packed with cars.

Entry Fee: Yes, the parking and the entry to this beach are free. However, there is a children’s pool, if you are visiting that, charges are applicable. This children’s pool is closed from 15th December to 15th May.    

Best Time To Visit: Spring is the best time to visit, as the plants in the nearby gardens are in full bloom. The spring months are April and May. Also, September is a good time to visit as the weather still remains great whereas the tourists have gone back. So you will find the beaches not as crowded in September.

How To Reach: The best and the quickest way to reach the beach from the San Diego Airport is by hiring a taxi that takes about 17minutes and $50 to $60. Alternatively, you can travel by Coaster, Old Town Trolley Tours, and even the water taxi.

Where To Stay: La Jolla Cove Hotel and Suites, The Shoal La Jolla Beach, The Bed and Breakfast Inn and ITH Beach Bungalow Surf Hostel are some of the places where you can stay.

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Oh ! what a beachy journey it has been! The beaches in California are all on the west coast but still differ from each other in attributes, features, and entertainment. But no matter what, these beaches are wonderful in their own way, offering amazing places to stay, enjoy and take many pictures to cherish the beach holiday in California.

At the onset of your journey to California, you will now take the not so off beaten path and visit the beaches first prior to heading to the urban and city life.

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