10 Best Beaches In Monterey, CA [for 2023]
Monterey in California is known for its spectacular beaches and is also home to a rich variety of marine life and birds. It has been attracting visitors from all over the world for years with its beautiful beaches and wild coastline.
Here you will find white sand cypress trees and pine trees, where you can enjoy relaxing, and there is much more that you can enjoy here. Its rugged beauty and high dunes offer spectacular views.
If you are planning to visit the Monterey Peninsula, you will find plenty of beaches to choose from. Here we have compiled a list of the best beaches in Monterey for you, take a look at our list.
Please it is a good idea to double-check your requirements before your trip and be sure to follow all local guidelines to keep yourself and others safe! Thanks.
1. Carmel River State Beach
Photo by Christian Holzinger on Unsplash
If you are a nature lover, then Carmel River State Beach can be a good option for you and it is also one of the good beaches in Monterey. To reach this idyllic area, you’ll need to follow Highway 1 south for 15 minutes, and past the charming Carmel-by-the-Sea’s Comstock Cottages.
At Carmel River State Beach, you’ll enjoy wonderful views as well as relax in the spectacular natural environment. Most people come here to see the habitat of the birds. Here you will also see Terek sandpipers and California brown pelicans as well as gulls and many more butterflies which makes it even more amazing.
2. Asilomar State Beach
Photo by Mick Haupt on Unsplash
Asilomar State Beach, located in downtown Pacific Grove, is a one-mile strip and is a unit of Asilomar State Park. Here you get to see huge cypress trees, if you like to walk, then you have a 1-mile path through the dunes open for pedestrians. There is much more here, such as native plants, and several tide pools, which make it even more spectacular.
Asilomar State Beach is considered a wonderful haven for humans as well as animals, you can spot some gray foxes running around in the winter months. Asilomar’s park staff offers cultural and natural history tours that make it an even better option.
3. Lovers Point Park Beach
Photo by Joshua Sazon on Unsplash
Lover’s Point Beach is located in Pacific Grove and is one of the best beaches in Monterey. Lover’s Point Beach is where one will enjoy watching the sun rise over the blue waters. This peaceful place is surrounded by cypress trees and rock formations.
The beach also shares a waterfront with Lover’s Point Park, where you can enjoy a walk, and there is also a children’s swimming pool and snack bar. Here you can enjoy sports on the beach volleyball court and visitors can also enjoy having a picnic.
Even though the water in Monterey is very cold, you will nd people trying scuba diving, swimming, or kayaking here. The water here on the white sand beach is very clear and beautiful and it is a great spot for photography.
4. Monterey State Beach
Photo by Wojtek Witkowski on Unsplash
Monterey State Beach is one of the best beaches in Monterey and is also the largest beach in Monterey. Here you will find volleyball courts, picnic tables, and barbecue pits and it is one of the favorite places for tide watchers. There are three separate beaches that are about a mile apart and it is one of the only Monterey beaches that have been recognized as safe for swimming.
Monterey State Beach shares the coast with Monterey Bay Waterfront Park and the Monterey Bay Recreational Trail which makes it even more spectacular. Monterey State Beach can be a great option to visit with friends. Kayak, canoe, and bike rentals are easily available here, which you can enjoy.
5. Del Monte Beach
Photo by Cristina Glebova on Unsplash
If you are looking for an uncrowded beach in Monterey, Del Monte Beach may be the best option for you. It is a favorite place of the local people, where they enjoy having picnics or coming for walking.
Del Monte Beach is very secluded and has a well-maintained boardwalk trail through beach dunes and also offers benches and picnic tables, making it one of the best beaches in Monterey.
Kite flying is also very popular and surfers will be seen in the waves, but swimming is not advised due to dangerous rip currents. You can enjoy looking for shorebirds and marine life here.
6. McAbee Beach
Photo by Daniel Salcius on Unsplash
McAbee Beach is a small yet spectacular beach, located in the heart of the Cannery Row area. At high tide, it is a small piece of sand, but at low tide, there is a little more room to move around and you can see the sand spreading over an extended area.
Here you will also nd people taking part in kayaking and scuba diving during low tide. You can also enjoy local cuisine here at restaurants around Cannery Row and, a short walk away, visit the famous Monterey Bay Aquarium, which makes it an even more wonderful option.
7. Carmel Beach
Photo by Richard James on Unsplash
Carmel Beach is known for its beautiful white sands in Monterey and is also considered one of the most beautiful beaches in Monterey. Carmel Beach is surrounded by cypress trees and wild owers making it an even more wonderful option.
This beach is often full of people taking morning walks and in the afternoon most of the families will be seen playing in the sand. It is also a great place for sunbathing and is also a favorite beach of the locals.
Walking is one of the most popular activities on Carmel Beach and you will also enjoy the beautiful views here. Carmel Beach is one of the dog-friendly beaches in Monterey.
8. Point Lobos State Natural Reserve
Photo by Holly Mandarich on Unsplash
Point Lobos State Natural Reserve, considered one of the top beaches in Monterey, is located at the northern tip of the world-famous Big Sur. It is also known for its crystal-clear waters as well as spectacular views.
This is one of Monterey’s prime sightseeing spots, so get your camera ready for photography, it’s also a great place for nature study enthusiasts. You can also enjoy a picnic here.
One of California’s richest marine habitats, this rare plant, an archeological site, is also known for its unique geology and abundant wildlife. There are about eight different beaches in this reserve, including Headland Cove, Gibson Beach, Hidden Beach, Moss Cove, Sea Lion Cove, Weston Beach, Whalers Cove, and China Cove.
9. Spanish Bay Beach
Photo by Manuel Inglez on Unsplash
If you are looking for a beach with natural beauty in Monterey, then Spanish Bay Beach could be a great option for you. This spectacular beach sits along the famous 17-Mile Drive between Moss Beach to the south and Asilomar State Beach to the north, and it also offers amazing views of the expansive Pacific Ocean.
Here you can enjoy a walk, sunbathe, and enjoy sand sports, or it is also considered a great place to have a picnic. Remember Spanish Bay Beach is not safe for swimming, the cold water and rip currents are not ideal. But it does offer spectacular sunsets and Spanish Bay Beach is one of the best beaches in Monterey.
10. Salinas River State Beach
Photo by Mysaell Armendariz on Unsplash
Salinas River State Beach, located on the northern side of the Monterey Coast in Moss Landing, is a quiet beach with a long sandy beach. This beach is a great place for birdwatchers, where you will nd western snow plovers, American kestrels, red-tailed hawks, California brown pelicans, white-crowned sparrows, and many more.
At Salinas River State Beach, you can enjoy fishing or just relax in the tranquil surroundings. But remember; Salinas River State Beach is not safe for swimming, with cold water and rip currents not ideal.