A Beach Lover’s Dream: The 5 Best Beaches in San Diego

There’s a lot to love about San Diego – including having some of the best beaches in the country. No visit to San Diego would be quite complete without a trip to the beach. There are beaches you can swim at, beaches you can sun at, and beaches with unique wildlife. Check out our five top picks for San Diego beaches.

1. La Jolla Cove

La Jolla Cove may be a tiny beach, but it’s truly gorgeous. Sandwiched between sandstone cliffs, visitors are treated to blue-green bay views, snorkelers have plenty to explore, and scuba divers can check out some of the most unique sea creatures in California. This area is part of the La Jolla Underwater Park Ecological Reserve and has unique fish such as the Garibaldi.

2. La Jolla Shores

You’ve only got to head north about a mile from La Jolla Cove to get to La Jolla Shores. This is a several mile long beach that’s beloved for having a gentle surf. As a result, it’s a top choice for people who are just learning to surf, people who enjoy stand up paddle boarding, and parents with young kids. It’s also the only beach within the limits of San Diego that has a boat launch.

3. Swami’s Beach

Located south of Encinitas, about 25 miles from San Diego, Swami’s Beach is a top spot for surfers. For those who aren’t quite ready to brave the waves, people watching is prime from the bluff-top park. Sit there and take in some of the scenery Southern California has on offer.

4. Carlsbad State Beach

For those who want nothing more than to take in a stunning California sunset, GoCar Tours has you covered. Head out to Carlsbad Beach to see the sun slide into the Pacific Ocean. This is a spot that families and surfers alike enjoy. There are numerous places to get a great view here, from the bluff at the north end of the beach to the grassy park that runs along the seawall.

5. Del Mar City Beach

Picnic lovers swear there’s no better spot than Del Mar City Beach. It’s got two parks beachside, great swimming, and even some surfing waves. Runners and walkers also take advantage of the dirt trail along the bluff on the southern side of the beach. No matter what you head there for, you’re sure to find some sun and fun at this famous beach.