La Jolla Cove

La Jolla Cove - USA
© John Uhrig

Tucked away at the foot of the sandstone cliffs north of San Diego, La Jolla Cove is one of the most photographed beaches in SoCal, so it’s fair to say it’s exceptionally beautiful. The Spanish phrase “La Jolla” means “jewel” and this cove is a gem.

Facing north it has an exceptionally clear deep blue waters with visibility up to 30 feet in depth making it popular for swimming, snorkelling and scuba diving. Marine life is prolific as the cove is part of the protected La Jolla Underwater Ecological Reserve. Fishing and removing objects (including coral and seashells) is strictly prohibited.

Swimming here is pretty safe and there is a permanent lifeguard service. At times there’s small surf although most waves are blocked by the rocky point.

For picnics and ball games, there’s a grassy park area on top of the cliffs and two sets of steps lead down to the sandy cove. If you’re into tide pooling and scrambling over rocks, head to the south end of the cove where there’s a sea arch for wading through to explore rock pools and sea caves.

Good amenities include restrooms, showers, benches and picnic tables. There is free parking nearby but it is often full. Head out along Coast Boulevard to find a spot and walk down from the bluffs on La Jolla Coast Walk Trail where birds and seals can often be spotted.

Dogs are permitted on the beach before 9am and after 6pm but must be on a lead.

Nearest town/city

La Jolla


CA 92037

Lifeguard service



  • Diving & snorkelling
  • Swimming/bathing

La Jolla Cove surf report


  • Shower

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Current weather (Fri Jul 19th 10:00)

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19°C / 66°F

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