San Diego, California is home to some of the best beaches in the U.S. Anyone who has ever seen this city’s beaches up close will agree. Not only do San Diego’s beaches offer the most incredible scenery, but they also offer a variety of beach activities for all ages. If you’re planning to visit San Diego this summer, or if you’re a resident, be sure to check out the 11 beaches listed below. They’re San Diego’s best beaches!
1. La Jolla Shores
La Jolla Shores is a mile-long beach with soft sand and calm waves. This San Diego beach includes a playground and several picnic areas - making it the perfect spot for families. It comes as no surprise that La Jolla Shores is usually ranked as one of the nation's best family beaches.
2. La Jolla Cove
La Jolla Cove, which is nestled between sandstone cliffs, is one of Southern California's most photographed beaches. Because of its lack of waves during the summer months, La Jolla Cove is the perfect spot for swimming, kayaking, scuba diving and snorkeling.
3. Children's Pool
The Children's Pool is a small beach area that's popular among scuba divers because of nearby reefs. Throughout the years, the Children's Pool has become a popular area for families to come and view harbor seals. This viewing area is closed to the public during harbor seal pupping season, which is December 15 through May 15.
4. South Mission Beach
Located at the southern end of the Golden Strand is South Mission Beach. If you're unfamiliar with the Golden Strand, it runs from Pacific Beach Point to the Mission Bay Channel. South Mission Beach is San Diego's widest beach and is a popular area for beach volleyball and basketball.
5. North Pacific Beach
North Pacific Beach, located north of Crystal Pier at Pacific Beach, is bordered by cliffs up to 75 feet tall and is home to Tourmaline Surfing Park - a favorite park among surfers, kite surfers and sailboarders. North Pacific Beach attracts a much younger crowd during the spring and summer months.
6. Pacific Beach
From Crystal Pier, Pacific Beach continues south before changing into Mission Beach. This popular San Diego beach attracts large crowds during the summer, making it one of the city's busiest beaches.
7. Mission Beach
Mission Beach, located between South Mission Beach and Pacific Beach, spans a little more than a mile and is one of San Diego's most popular beaches. In addition to sandy beaches, Mission Beach also offers dining establishments, street performers, night clubs and access to nearby Belmont Park - a popular amusement park.
8. Mission Bay Beaches
Consisting of more than 4,600 acres, Mission Bay Park is the largest park of its kind in the U.S. Approximately 19 of its 27 miles of shoreline are made up of beautiful sandy beaches. This amazing San Diego beach area is home to several species of birds and fish, and it's also a favorite area among sail boaters, swimmers and water skiers.
9. Ocean Beach
Ocean Beach, located in the coastal community of Ocean Beach, spans for one mile and is broken up by several rock jetties. At the north end of Ocean Beach is Dog Beach - the only 24-hour dog beach in San Diego. At the south end of the beach is Ocean Beach Municipal Pier. This is a favorite fishing spot among many locals and tourists.
10. Black's Beach
Black's Beach is a gorgeous beach that spans for two miles and sits at the bottom of 300-foot cliffs. It's very common to see hang gliders and paragliders soaring from these cliffs. Black's Beach is also one of the largest nude beaches in the U.S.
11. Windansea Beach
Windansea Beach is best known for its gorgeous scenery and surfing opportunities. Its best-known landmark is the palm-covered shack that sits on the shore. This landmark is famously known as the San Diego Windansea Beach Surf Shack.