Ocean Beach in San Francisco, enough said. It’s one of my happy places. The Pacific Ocean lined city beach runs flush against the Richmond and Sunset districts as well as Golden Gate Park.
I had the chance to spend some more time there since my post San Francisco: Your First Ocean Beach years ago.
The scenes I captured in that post focused on the north end of the beach near the infamous Cliff House. The photos below come more from the south side of the three mile long beach. The scene was cloudy, cool, windy and misty right along the coast. I would have expected nothing less. It’s what makes this beach and San Francisco the most picturesque in my opinion. Thick fog in the early morning is extremely common in this part of the city as well.
Along with the beach I got up close views of the colorful, priceless homes that lie opposite the Great Highway. You will find plenty of beach, bike paths and places to roam along the frigid ocean waters. Well without further ado I present to you more of Ocean Beach in San Francisco.
It was another relaxing and refreshing Ocean Beach experience. It didn’t even feel like I was in the big city as I roamed.
- Make sure to dress in layers. It is usually much colder here than in the heart of the city.
- You’ll find plenty of parking on both ends of Ocean Beach.
- I just got my feet wet per usual. Swimming is not recommended due to the strong rip currents, tall waves and cold water.
Have you spent time along/on Ocean Beach and in this part of San Francisco?
In the San Diego area and looking to get away from the hustle-and-bustle of Southern California? Make the trek over to Coronado Island and then down California State Route 75 to Silver Strand State Beach.
The beach sits on the narrow strip of land that connects Coronado proper with Imperial Beach. You’ll find beaches on each side of the highway, along both San Diego Bay to the east and the Pacific Ocean to the west. All of the photos below are from the ocean side.
As you head onto the beach from the main parking area, look to the right down the coast and you’ll see the heart of Coronado and Point Loma off in the distance. The beach is away from town, so you will find it not nearly as busy as nearby Coronado Beach. No hustle-and-bustle here!
Turn to the left, now heading southward on the white and black sanded beach, and you will see the mountains and hills of Tijuana and Mexico which sits only ten or so miles away.
Starring out into the blue waters of the Pacific, your bound to see a military ship or two off in the distance.
As you walk the beach who knows what you’ll encounter. Amongst the many bits of seashells, I had my first ever encounter with a sand dollar. They are a frequent sight here. If you look down you might spot some moon snail, cockle and silver oyster shells as well, the last of which is how the beach got its name.
Seaweed, common on a lot of beaches, is on the light side here. This was one of the cleanest and biggest, non-decaying pieces of seaweed I have ever seen.
Tip: To access the San Diego Bay side of the state park and beaches, just park on the Pacific side and take one of the walking tunnels underneath the road. There is no parking available on that side.
What other beaches around San Diego and in Southern California would you recommend to get away from it all?
Are you around Los Angeles, looking for a quick road trip option to get a feel for what the Pacific coastline has to offer? The roughly forty mile stretch that starts in Santa Monica, goes through Malibu and ends at Point Mugu offers the road tripper a taste of that beauty and a lot more.
You can easily hop onto the PCH (also known as the Pacific Coast Highway and California State Route 1) either directly off westbound Interstate 10 or anywhere along Santa Monica State Beach.
As you head west you’ll pass by numerous vista and other random stopping points where you can soak in the coastline, walk the beaches and take one photo friendly shot after another. I’ll let the pictures tell the story.
After checking out the beautiful SoCal Pacific coastline, stick around for sunset and you might run into a scene like in Photo of the Week: A SoCal PCH Sunset.
I haven’t come across a better place to catch a sunset then along the Pacific Ocean and Pacific Coast Highway (the PCH) in Southern California. This shot is just west of Malibu near Point Mugu State Park (yep driving along the coast in this part of California involves driving west). 🙂
The Pacific Coast Highway (the PCH) has one picturesque and romantic spot after another along the California coastline. The Bixby (Creek) Bridge in Big Sur is one of the more well-known ones.
The bridge is a short 13-mile drive south on the PCH from Carmel. Coming from there, I proceeded to drive over the bridge and Bixby Creek, parking on the south end along the road.
The north end is where the tourists are all at so I had this side all to myself checking out the bridge, looking out towards the Pacific Ocean and peaking straight down at the beach and turquoise waters.
After hanging along the side of the road for a bit I drove back across the bridge and joined the rest of the visitors on the north side capturing the cliffs and coastline along with…
…one of the most photographed bridges you’ll find anywhere. The bridge opened in 1932 and is one of the world’s highest single-span concrete arch bridges.
I knew what it looked like beforehand because it has been featured in countless commercials, television shows and movies. It was even more beautiful seeing in person, a romantic spot for sure.
It’s along way down, make sure not to get to close to the edge when there.
What a great early evening hanging out at the 714-ft Bixby Bridge and along this part of the California coastline.
If your ever in the Monterey Bay area or planning a road trip on the PCH, make sure to include a stop at the Bixby Bridge in your travel plans.
What picturesque bridges have you come across in your travels?
Posted in California, day trip, Road Trip, travel
Tagged Big Sur, Bixby Bridge, bridge, California, Carmel, day trip, Monterey, pacific coast highway, Pacific Ocean, PCH, road trip