BEST BEACH FOR: Body whompers, tide pool lovers, and Laguna’s 20-somethings.
- Things to Do
- Plan Your Trip
Visiting our protected Laguna Beach tide pools provide for a fun and informative way for everyone to learn about marine life as well as ocean conservation.
Unlike its neighboring cities to the north and south, Laguna Beach is known for its spectacular tide pooling. These special ecosystems in Laguna Beach are part of our Marine Protected Environment and therefor thrive since they are protected against fishing, touching or harvesting.
Tide pools are found in intertidal zones, which are areas where the ocean meets the land: from steep, rocky ledges to long, sloping sandy beaches. These formations create isolated pockets of sea water filled with a wide variety of ocean life.(source)
A marine reserve or "no take" MPA is a highly protected type of MPA where removing or destroying natural or cultural resources is prohibited. Marine reserves are rare in the United States, with about 3 percent of U.S. waters in these no-take areas. Reserves protect whole ecosystems, allowing them to return toward a more natural and balanced state. (source)
Despite their ability to adapt, life here in the tide pools is susceptible to human impacts. Collecting, trampling and harassment o these species has a dramatic impact on the survival of these special sea creatures and the preservation of this unique habitat. (source)
From the deep, secluded pools at Thousand Steps to the easily accessible rock shelf at Crescent Bay, the city has no shortage of marine life just waiting for you to explore. Anemones, hermit crabs, sea stars – there’s a whole world just below the water’s surface.
Visit the various pools at low tide and keep an eye on the swell – getting caught on the rocks with waves crashing can be dangerous. It’s also worth noting that you can’t take anything from the beaches of Laguna, as it’s a marine protected area. This is an adventure in which you’ll walk away with memories and leave nothing behind.
If you’re looking for beaches that are easy to access with tide pools, Crescent, Diver's, and Rockpile beaches all have plenty for you to marvel at. For first-timers or anyone eager for extra info, the pools at Main Beach and Treasure Island are easily accessible and often have docents on hand to guide your exploration.