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Top 10 Beaches In Southern California

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If there’s one thing Southern California is known for, it’s incredible beaches! California has slowly been lessening its COVID-19 restrictions, and it’s a great time to visit! Here are some stunning beaches you won’t want to miss on your next trip to Southern California.

10 Stunning Beaches in Southern California

1. Coronado Central Beach (San Diego)

Coronado Island is known for its scenic, sparkling beaches. Perhaps the best known of these is Coronado Central Beach. With a visit here, you can look forward to not only relaxing on a gorgeous beach but also enjoying some shopping or dining at the historic Hotel Del Coronado, which sits on the southern end of the beach!

Coronado Central Beach

2. La Jolla Shores Beach (San Diego)

Located in the beautiful La Jolla neighborhood of San Diego, this beach has something for everyone. Families will enjoy checking out the tidepools or playing a game of frisbee on the lawns bordering the beach. If you’re looking for more adventurous activities you won’t be let down either – portions of the beach are popular surfing and kayaking spots! It’s also just across from La Jolla Underwater Park, a stunning ecological preserve full of seals, fish, and other marine life.

La Jolla Shores Beach

3. Santa Monica Beach (Los Angeles County)

Here’s a great option for families! Santa Monica Beach is a spacious, sandy 3.5-mile beach divided by the iconic Santa Monica Pier. In addition to being a popular spot for surfing and swimming, the area surrounding the beach has plenty of attractions as well. For families looking for the best swimming spots, heading further away from the Pier in one direction or another can be a good move!

Santa Monica Beach

4. Sunset Cliffs Natural Park (San Diego)

Those up for a bit of a climb won’t want to miss Sunset Cliffs Natural Park. Getting to the sandy portion of this one is a bit more difficult than the others on this list – it requires descending a fairly steep hill or wading through water. Still, this spot is well-loved by locals and tourists alike for its stunning views. Even if you’re not up for the trek to the sand beach, you can still enjoy said views from the tops of the cliffs. Tidepooling, watching the sunset, or viewing Sunset Cliffs Open Roof Sea Cave are all fun activities you can expect to enjoy at this beach as well!

Sunset Cliffs Natural Park

5. Zuma Beach (Los Angeles County)

If you’re looking for a great spot for surfing, tanning, or enjoying gorgeous scenery, this is the beach for you. This one doesn’t have as many close surrounding amenities as some of the other on this list, but the beautiful white sands and clear waters more than make up for it. While lifeguards are present at this beach, swimmers should use some caution, as riptides can occur off the shore in the area.

Zuma Beach

6. Leo Carrillo State Beach (Los Angeles County)

Leo Carrillo State Beach has a ton of memorable, interesting reasons to add it to your next trip! You can look forward to viewing a sea cave, discovering ocean life in the area’s tide pools, and cooling off in the Pacific Ocean. Better yet, leashed dogs are allowed on a marked portion of the beach, meaning your furry friend can join the adventure as well.  

Leo Carrillo State Beach

7. Nicholas Canyon Beach (Los Angeles County)

Those looking for a less crowded option in the Malibu area may enjoy Nicholas Canyon Beach. This serene, secluded beach is great for surfing as well as a variety of other water activities, including swimming and bodyboarding. If you’re looking for a relaxing beach stroll you won’t be disappointed either – you can look forward to a scenic coast and amazing views of the sunset.

Nicholas Canyon Beach

8. Diver’s Cove (Laguna Beach)

Looking for a spot to go snorkeling or scuba diving? Diver’s Cove’s name doesn’t lie! Located in Laguna Beach, it’s a great spot for viewing ocean life. In addition to its popularity with Diver’s, its small size and protected cove have also made it a popular choice for families with young children.

Diver's Cove

9. Huntington State Beach (Huntington Beach)

Head on over to Huntington State Beach for a relaxing day out or to catch a wave! Located in Huntington Beach – also known as Surf City USA, due to its immense popularity with surfers – this beach actually has a little bit of everything. Areas of the beach are restricted from surfing, making them ideal for swimming or wading. The beach also has several amenities including barbecue grills and firepits, making it a great spot for almost any kind of outing.

Huntington State Beach

10. Mission Beach (San Diego)

Located in San Diego, Mission Beach is home to gorgeous sunsets, soft sands, and almost 2-miles of oceanfront boardwalk. Visitors can expect to enjoy activities such as tanning and swimming. Additionally, the iconic Belmont Park, a retro amusement park, is just off the boardwalk at Mission Beach.

Mission Beach

Read More:

Travel Insurance That Covers Covid-19

Top 10 Family Friendly Outdoor Adventures in Southern California

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Disclaimer: Current travel rules and restrictions can change without notice. The decision to travel is ultimately your responsibility. Contact your consulate and/or local authorities to confirm your nationality’s entry and/or any changes to travel requirements before traveling.  Travel Off Path does not endorse traveling against government advisories


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