San Clemente Beach

The coastal city of San Clemente California is ideally located between the larger cities of Los Angeles and San Diego on the southern edge of Orange County. Families will enjoy vacations to San Clemente because of its easy-going appeal, and surfers will find a San Clemente beach to be a perfect fit as well. In fact, San Clemente is considered to be the best surfing destination in Orange County, and a number of surfing publications are based here, including Surfing Magazine and Longboard Magazine. Some 66,000 people call San Clemente California home, and they are a privileged bunch. In addition to fine beaches, residents here enjoy great year round weather, and for those who like to fish, the 1,200-foot long San Clemente pier offers its own bait and tackle shop. At the base of the pier is a restaurant and bar where you can relax with a drink or enjoy a savory meal.

San Clemente Hotel
San Clemente Hotel

Most of Southern California has an abundant amount of things to do and beautiful weather, and this lovely beach is no exception. Spending time on a San Clemente beach is the most popular endeavor for those enjoying vacations to San Clemente, and there is no less than 20 acres of sandy shoreline to take advantage of here. The main San Clemente beach is the San Clemente City Beach, which slopes down from the bluff-top city. While the waves here are good, it’s not the best San Clemente beach for surfing, as it is often full of fellow beachgoers who like to swim in the warm Pacific Ocean waters. The San Clemente City Beach opens to the public at 4 a.m. and doesn’t close until midnight, so you can definitely enjoy a full day here. For those who are driving to the beach, pay parking is available in a lot that sits atop a bluff. This parking lot overlooks the pier below and there is a path to get down to the sand. Street parking is also available on streets in the area, so if the lot is full, you can hopefully find a vacant spot in the surrounding neighborhood. There are lifeguards on duty at this main San Clemente beach, and in addition to food concessions, there are public restrooms, showers, volleyball and basketball courts, and beach rental stands where you can nab a surf board, a beach chair, or a beach umbrella. Unfortunately for dog owners, no dogs are allowed on this beach.

San Clemente Beach
San Clemente Beach

For those who really want to enjoy surfing when taking vacations to San Clemente, the mile-long San Clemente State Beach is an ideal place to go. It’s found just south of the San Clemente City Beach, and is open daily between the hours of 6 a.m. and 10 p.m. For a few bucks, you can park here all day, and should you want to forego the area hotels and do some camping instead, there is a campground at the San Clemente State Park that offers 157 campsites. 72 of these campsites have RV hookups. Because there is a bus stop at San Clemente State Beach, you won’t have to drive over if you’d rather not do so. Various trails wind their way through the San Clemente State Beach area, and while dogs are not allowed on the beach, they are permitted on the “hard trails”, provided that you keep them on a leash that is no longer than 6-feet in length. Making a fire on the beach here come sundown is a joy that many beachgoers enjoy, but just make sure to stick to the provided fire rings. As for the facilities at San Clemente State Beach, there is a lifeguard station, some public restrooms and showers, and picnic tables. Interestingly enough, San Clemente State Beach is a free Wi-Fi zone, so you can bring a laptop if you have one and do some internet surfing when you’re not catching waves in the Pacific Ocean.

Another San Clemente Beach that you will want to consider visiting while taking vacations to San Clemente is the San Onofre State Beach, which like the San Clemente State Beach, is a top surfing spot. There is also a campground in the state park here, though the beach is only available for day use. Parking is available at San Onofre State Beach, and the parking lot is just steps from the inviting sand. Often times, when hanging out at San Onofre State Beach, you can spot whales or dolphins swimming by, which is a real treat. On the southern edge of this beach is a stretch of sand where clothing is optional, so if you like to go natural, you can always opt to head there. San Clemente California has something for everyone to enjoy, which is why it’s such a popular destination for area residents and tourists alike.

For surfing, whale watching, or beach strolling on your California vacation, San Clemente California is one of many perfect destinations in this state.

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