Scripps Beach takes its name from the adjoining UCSD Scripps Institute of Oceanography in La Jolla. Although the iconic long concrete pier is not open to the public, you can use the sandy beach on either side of it.
This beach is much quieter than its better-known neighbour at La Jolla Shores as it is less accessible, but it is popular with locals. Surfers head for the designated area north of the pier while swimming and kayaking usually takes place towards the southern end.
To the north the cliffs get higher and the beach is rocky with plenty of rock pools at low tide. This area is known as Scripps Beach Dike Rock Area.
Accessed from La Jolla Shores Drive/El Paseo Grande, the beach only has street parking which is abundant. You need to walk down the wooden staircase to the beach either from the bend on El Paseo Grande or via the university campus north of the pier.
For refreshments there’s a clifftop café (Caroline’s Café) above the beach just south of the pier. From there you can walk north on the shoreline to reach South Blacks Beach which is clothing-optional. However, this route is only passable at low tide.
There is a lifeguard but the nearest restrooms and changing facilities are half a mile south at La Jolla Shores.
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