Living in Southern California, I have photographed many of the beaches of North County San Diego through the years. But I have not gotten even close to shooting every one of them!
So, it has been my mission this year to shoot every beach on the 70 miles of San Diego coast.
Let’s get going!
Beaches of North County San Diego
On Jan 11, 2018, my daughter and I took a quick ride to North County San Diego to photograph a few of the beaches.
Before leaving, I mapped out the ten shores that we would be conquering. Our primary objective was to start at Wisconsin Street Beach in Oceanside followed by the beaches of Carlsbad and finally ending at Grandview Beach in Encinitas.
All in all, we covered 11.4 miles of San Diego’s 70 miles of coastline.
If there is one thing that I have learned on the adventure, it is that all of these beaches listed below are best to visit on a mid to low tide day.
I have prepared a list of all San Diego lagoons and nature centers that are along the coastline. I have also linked each site to its appropriate website.
Explore, have fun and learn at the same time!
Nature Centers and San Diego Lagoons
San Diego doesn’t just have the best beaches in the country; we also have some of the most significant coastal wetlands as well.
With over 70 miles of coast to discover in San Diego, there are also several coastal lagoons to visit as well. Be that you are in a mood for a hike or interested in the natural history of the area, you really can not go wrong!
I will be starting the list at the most northern location, Oceanside and will be making my way South, finally ending at the Mexican Border.
La Jolla Shores Beach has over 1 mile of sandy beach and is located between the Scripps Institute of Oceanography and La Jolla Shores Hotel at 8300 Camino Del Oro, in La Jolla, California.
This beach has some of the most gentle waves during the summer in all of San Diego, which in turn makes it an excellent beach for the family.
Discovering La Jolla Shores Beach
This beach, due to its calm waters is an ideal area for swimming or learning how to surf. Additionally, there is also a boardwalk attached to the beach, which makes biking, skating, and jogging favorite activities here as well here.
San Diego is by far one of the best places in the country to go on a whale watching tour. In this article, I would like to present to you a comprehensive list of all possible San Diego whale watching tours available in San Diego County.
Let’sSee SomeWhales and Dolphins!
There are several species of whale to encounter here, especially during the Gray whales’ migration season (Nov-April). The Blue whale (May-Nov) is another species that is commonly seen passing by the coastline of San Diego.
Along with whales, there are also four possible species of dolphins frequently seen on a San Diego whale watching tour. These include the Pacific bottlenose dolphin, Risso’s dolphin, common dolphin, and the Pacific white-sided dolphin.
Here I would like to set up a comprehensive list of the beaches of San Diego County, beginning with the most northern shore and making my way down the coast until the most southern beach sharing its border with Mexico.
For all those that live in San Diego, we are so incredibly fortunate to live in this gorgeous city. I mean, with an average daytime temperature of 69.8` F, what is not to love?
San Diego County has over 70 miles of unique coastline to appreciate and explore!
Experience San Diego Like a Local!
Having been fortunate enough to live in this area for over 30 years, I have explored almost every single mile, that is, except on the military beaches (San Diego has three of them. But I did get a few pictures from the outside looking in, and for that I am grateful.
About two years ago, I made a pact with myself to document as many of the beaches of San Diego County as I could. To make things as easy as possible, I will be listing each beach and including the following criteria-
Points of Interest
My Rating (1-5 with five being the highest)
(As you can see, restroom availability is a critical metric!)
I have written previously on many of these locations so I will also be linking each relevant post under Additional Information.
(Please have a look and share it with those that you love.)
Whether you go to the beach for the sun, water, or walk on the sand, the beaches of San Diego County have something for everyone.
La Jolla is a popular seaside coastal community located 20 minutes from Downtown San Diego. One of the very first places I take visitors from out of town is La Jolla. And once here, we venture off on a La Jolla coast walk.
Walking the Coast of La Jolla
There are so many things to experience in La Jolla, but it is an absolute must to walk the coast of La Jolla.
There are all kinds of things to do in La Jolla: such as hiking, beachcombing, biking, swimming, diving, snorkeling, kayaking, really the possibilities are endless here!
And do not get me started on all the fantastic photo opportunities available as well!
I have been coming to the beaches of Encinitas for over thirty years, and boy do I have enormous amounts of pictures to prove it! If I had to pick my favorite stretch of beaches on the 70 miles of coast in San Diego, it would have to be the beaches of Encinitas.
At the beach, life is different Time doesn’t move hour to hour but mood to moment. We live by the currents, plan by the tides, and follow the sun. Anonymous
Discovering San Diego Beaches
Sometime back, I remember reading that the beaches of San Diego are considered to be some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. So it was only logical that when I moved down here from Los Angeles to go to college, it was my mission to see if this theory was correct. Are the beaches of San Diego such a big deal?
Though I had been to a San Diego only once as a child, the one thing I remember is Mission Beach. That was as far as my association with San Diego beaches went, flat and sandy. Well, when I finally went out to explore the San Diego coastline, I was not let down, not by a long shot!
It is that time of year again! California’s official state marine mammal, the California Gray whale, is starting its way down South! Generally speaking, this is the best time for San Diego whale watching.
San Diego Whale Watching
Whales pass through San Diego year round but prefer to stay more than five miles offshore. Gray whales, on the other hand, tend to keep close to the shore when traveling South; as a result, this is a great time to see them from onshore.
Let us now take a look at a few fascinating facts about the Gray whale; also, I have also included a summary of some other possible whales you are most likely to encounter while on a San Diego whale watching tour
As I have said many, many times, San Diego has some of the best beaches in the country. Most are well known and are almost always busy, but there are a few that not many know about. Today I would like to concentrate on one of my personal favorites, Swami’s State Beach.
This hidden beach oasis is situated toward the southern end of Encinitas, California, which is about 25 miles north of Downtown San Diego.
SeaWorld, one of San Diego’s premier adventure parks, is situated on 21 acres in Mission Bay Park and is located just 5 miles north of Downtown San Diego. This marine zoological park first opened its gates in 1964.
It wasn’t until ten years later, as a child, I had the pleasure to walked through those gates for the very first time. I do not remember much, except for one thing: getting soaking wet from the Shamu show and wondering why in the world the water was so cold.
In college, I volunteered at San Diego State University, to help a research biologist input data from his Elephant seal study at Hubbs-SeaWorld Research Institute(HSWRI). I loved every time I walked through those doors. I felt like I arrived, even if it was only volunteering.
SeaWorld- Over the Past Thirty Years
My husband and I have lived in and around San Diego County for over 30 years, and we have enjoyed being SeaWorld annual pass members for at least 10 of those years. I love that my children not only had a blast on all the activities and rides, but they were also experiencing and learning many things regarding the marine ecosystem as a whole.
I want to share with you a few photos I have compiled over the years!
Every year, Coronado Beach makes the Top 10 beaches in the US. This beach is one of my children’s favorite, as well. Coronado Island in San Diego, CA can be seen across San Diego Bay from Downtown San Diego.
In particular, we enjoy the vast sandy beaches and adore going into the Hotel del Coronado; located less than a mile from our starting point.
Would you like to take a tour of Coronado Island in San Diego, CA? Well, you have come to the right place. Come and join me on an epic adventure, going back in time and staying in the present at the same time!
Sunset Cliffs Natural Park is over 18 acres of cliffs adjacent to the Western coast of Point Loma beginning at Ladera Street.
There is a sandy trail that runs parallel to Sunset Cliffs Boulevard that makes for a gorgeous walk. Whenever we have company visiting from out of town and want to show off our coastline, this is the where we go.
The Beauty and Wonder of Sunset Cliffs Natural Park
Above is a short video that showcases the beauty of the cliffs next to the water.