This is a top spot for nature lovers. Gibson’s Beach is the southernmost beach in Point Lobos State Natural Reserve and can be reached by car in around 10 minutes from Carmel. The scenic drive alone is well worth the time spent.
It’s a wide sandy stretch about a quarter of a mile long and access to the beach can be challenging, but the reward of seclusion and some nice wave action awaits anyone who is up for it. Like all of the Central California region, the water temperature is chilly, so be ready for a bit of a shock as you dash into the waves. The terrain around this area is full of rocky bluffs and small pocket coves.
Hikers and birdwatchers will find this area particularly attractive. Have your camera at the ready so you can take some jaw dropping photographs of the beautiful views and natural surroundings. It’s also a good idea to bring along a pair of binoculars so you can get a closer look at the seals relaxing on the rocks in the distance and maybe even catch a glimpse of a sea otter lying on the floating masses of kelp in the water.
Don’t forget to bring a packed lunch too, as there are no restaurants nearby, but there are facilities like picnic tables and toilets by the beach.
There’s plenty of parking nearby, but it’s a good idea to get here early as the car park fills up pretty quickly.
And if you have time, you can take the 20 minute drive up the coast and check out the Monterey Bay Aquarium, where you can get up close and personal with all the marine life in the area. Plus, you can load up on learning all about the oceans and the critters that call them home.
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