Shell Beach & Boomer Beach

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Shell & Boomer Beach are located along the boardwalk next to Ellen Browning Scripps Park, just south of the La Jolla Cove.
Don't miss Shell Beach & Boomer Beach on your family fun vacation to La Jolla, San Diego! Come bodysurf, snorkel, and check out the tide pools during low tide!
Why you'll love this beach
Why you'll love this beach
Experience La Jolla’s Hidden Gems at Shell Beach & Boomer Beach
Shell & Boomer Beach
Overview
Save on Gear
Things to Do
Popular Activities
Get There & Parking
Featured Activity
Know Before You Go
Stay Nearby
Similar Beaches

Highlights

Things to Do
Tips
How to get there
Parking
Things to Do
Tips
How to get there
Parking

Overview

The Beautiful Cliffs and Sand at Shell BeachSpearfisherman Getting Ready to Go Out at Boomer Beach

Shell Beach and Boomer Beach are popular among locals and tourists alike, but for two very different reasons. Located in The Jewel of San Diego, also known as La Jolla, these two beautiful beaches are often overlooked.

If you’re wondering which one is best for you, it depends on what you want to do! If you're an adrenaline addict looking to get your heart pumping, Boomer Beach is the place for you for some bodysurfing fun.

However, if you're looking for a calm walk along the beach searching for unique shells during low tide, then Shell Beach would be the perfect fit.

Enjoy The Calm Of Shell Beach

Shell Beach is perfect if you're looking for a suitable place to get your feet in the sand and find shells to collect. However, the beach is pretty small, so it's best to visit at low tide, so you have more room as the bluffs essentially wall off the coast at each end.

To access the beach, there is a set of stairs from the grassy park area down to the warm sands of Shell Beach. There's also an excellent path to walk around the bluffs that will lead you through the park. Here, you can spot the nearby Children's Pool Beach and the seals that dot it’s coastline.

Local Tips
Beach Access to Boomer Beach
Although Boomer Beach does not have official beach access you are allowed to access Boomer Beach via the walking along the small sandstone cliffs. You are not allowed to lay on the sand at Boomer Beach but you can enter the water to bodysurf, snorkel, scuba dive or even spearfish.

Exploring Boomer Beach

Boomer Beach is a well sought out beach for people who love to go bodysurfing or snorkeling. Consider renting snorkel gear for the entire day before you arrive! However, there are no boards allowed, which means no body boards or surf boards on this beach.

This beach is on the western end of Ellen Browning Scripps Park, and to access it, you will need to make your way down the bluffs as there are no stairs. But that's the beauty of this place! It's more secluded and remote, so you don't have to worry about the typical California beach crowds, as most people opt to visit La Jolla Cove Beach, right next door.

Even though this beach is more secluded, know that you will still have the park up on the bluffs where you will have access to picnic tables and bathrooms.

Save on Paddle Boarding!

2-Hour Stand Up Paddleboard Rental
Stand Up Paddle Board Rental
Using your Go Pass, head out for a 2-Hour Stand Up Paddle board Rental. Paddle around Harbor Island and keep an eye out for dolphins and other local wildlife. No matter your skill level, you will enjoy a beautiful day out on the water.
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Local Tips
What activities does the Go City San Diego pass include?

There’s a variety of activities included with the Go City San Diego pass such as: The San Diego Zoo, Safari Park, LEGOLAND, SeaWorld, Hiking Tours, Whale Watching, Museum Tours, Speed Boat Adventures & more!

For the most popular attractions and water-sport rentals as well as the biggest discounts, consider the All-Inclusive Pass.

Use our exclusive discount code GVSD5OFF to save an extra 5%!

Things to Do

Scuba Diving
Scuba Diving
Snorkeling
Snorkeling
Sunbathing
Sunbathing
Swimming
Swimming
Tide Pooling
Tide Pooling

You Will Love Shell Beach & Boomer Beach

There are three things that all the beaches of San Diego have in common, and that's sand, saltwater, and sun! However, there are a few extras that make these two gems special.

Boomer Beach offers onsite scuba gear rental and snorkel rentals as well! You can save on gear rental fees and admission prices to nearby attractions such as the San Diego Beach Tour, the famous SeaWorld San Diego, Belmont Park, and more when you purchase an All-inclusive Go San Diego City pass.

Use our discount code to score additional savings.

Search for Seashells

Whether you're looking to collect conches or cockles, Shell Beach is the place you want to be! Not to mention, collecting seashells is legal on these sands, hence the name.

Don't forget to bring a basket or a bag to put your newly found shells in to keep them safe. To have the best chance of finding the best ones, come at low tide, so you have a larger area to explore.

Ride the Waves Without a Board

What better way to immerse yourself in your surroundings than to try your hand at bodysurfing? While boards are prohibited, bodysurfing is not!

Time in the waves is a great way to start or end your day with the sea breeze in your face while your heart is pumping as you're gliding your way back to the sand!

Experience the Beautiful Tide Pools at Low Tide

If you're not much of a swimmer, but you love sea life and want to see what lives below the surface, Shell Beach is where you want to visit, especially at low tide!

When the sea recedes, countless sea creatures can be found in the pools that are left behind. Exploring the pools is especially fantastic for families looking for a unique experience.

Explore the Ocean Floor

Snorkeling is perfect for those who want to take a peek at what's going on under the water. Perhaps bodysurfing is a bit too much for you; then, snorkeling would be a perfect way to cool off and see some amazing sea life in its natural habitat.

While not as calm as some nearby La Jolla beaches like La Jolla Cove, snorkeling can make for a fun afternoon activity at both Shell Beach and Boomer Beach.

How to Get There & Parking

Street Parking
Street Parking

The access point to Shell Beach is at Ocean Street and Coast Boulevard in La Jolla, in Ellen Browning Scripps Park. Boomer Beach can be accessed to the northeast of Shell Beach, near the peninsula's tip near La Jolla Cove.

Parking is very tight but free! We suggest that you drive along Coast Boulevard until a spot opens up. There are constantly people coming and going, and spots open up all the time.

Alternatively, consider taking a rideshare service such as Uber or Lyft, both available throughout San Diego.

Featured Activity

La Jolla Underwater Park: Kayak and Snorkel Tour
La Jolla Kayak & Snorkel Tour
Jump on a kayak and follow an experienced guide to find the best snorkeling spot in the La Jolla Ecological Reserve! On this 2-hour tour, you can expect to see a variety of fish and other marine animals!
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Know Before You Go & Tips

No Alcohol
No Alcohol
No Camping
No Camping
No Dogs
No Dogs
No Glass Containers
No Glass Containers
No Smoking
No Smoking
No Trash Cans
No Trash Cans
Stairs to Beach
Stairs to Beach

What You Need To Know Before You Go

Be Careful When Swimming or Bodysurfing

La Jolla Cove is right around the corner from Boomer Beach with more protected seas.

The waters at these beaches are considered more of an open ocean environment that can be dangerous to some. Therefore, we highly suggest only strong swimmers venture out at these beaches for bodysurfing or swimming.

No Boards Allowed

No boards are allowed on either of these beaches. However, bodysurfing is encouraged at Boomer Beach! Please do not bring bodyboards or surfboards.

Snorkeling Is Best In Calm Waters

When the waves are a bit rough, it's hard to see the creatures and plant life under the water. Choose to come snorkeling on a calmer day for the best experience.

Stay a Night Near Shell Beach & Boomer Beach

La Jolla Cove Hotel & Suites is located within walking distance of both Boomer and Shell Beach as well as La Jolla Cove, Seal Rock, and many different local eateries. This is the perfect place to stay while you explore La Jolla and the nearby neighborhoods.

Shell Beach & Boomer Beach
is Known For:
Snorkeling
Snorkeling
Know This:
Stairs to Beach
Stairs to Beach
Tide Pools
Tide Pools
This Month's Forecast
67°F / 77°F
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69°F / 79°F
Sunny in August
Sep
67°F / 79°F
Sunny in September
Oct
63°F / 78°F
Sunny in October

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