Mission Beach

When you imagine a traditional California beach, you are probably thinking of Mission Beach, with its old-fashioned amusement park, lively boardwalk, and white sands.
Why you'll love this beach
Why you'll love this beach
Visit Mission Beach for the Surf, Amusement Park, Boardwalk and More
Mission Beach
Overview
Explore & Save
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

Windskating on the Beach in Mission BeachSurfboards on the Beach in Mission Beach

What is your definition of heaven on earth? For lots of people, it’s the two miles of continuous white sand beach on the Pacific coast known as Mission Beach. This beloved beach town is just south of the busier Pacific Beach and ends where the ocean meets Mission Bay.

What makes this town so much fun is that there’s always something going on, so you’ll never find yourself bored during a visit.

Not all beaches in San Diego are good for both surfing and swimming, but again, Mission Beach is not like all the rest. In fact, you can try out lots of outdoor activities here, both on land and in water. This is more of a residential beach than its neighbor to the north, with more single-family homes and vacation rentals instead of lots of restaurants, stores and bars dotting the landscape.

You may notice a family-friendly feel at Mission Beach because it is a place where you can spend all day, picnicking, hanging out on the shore, playing in the water, and surfing.

Adding to the family atmosphere is Belmont Park, an old-timey amusement park right on the beach that offers other newer attractions such as laser tag and escape rooms.

In addition to everything else that Mission Beach has on tap, you also have that near-perfect weather of San Diego to make every day as good as the last.

It’s absolutely worth your time to plan at least one day to spend in this beach community during your visit to San Diego.

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Things to Do

Beach Volleyball
Beach Volleyball
Bikes Allowed
Bikes Allowed
Running
Running
Sunbathing
Sunbathing
Swimming
Swimming

The Best of the Best

Lifeguards Year Round

First things first; let’s talk about the beach itself. With lifeguards all year round, swimming is usually a safe bet here, as is boogie-boarding. Rental shops are close by to get equipment and offer other fun activities such as stand-up paddle boarding and kite boarding.

Surfing at Mission Beach

Additionally, surfing is big at Mission Beach, although it may be more frustrating for experienced surfers at times. Because surfing is good for all skill levels, surfing schools like to offer lessons to beginners here.

For those with more advanced skills, sharing the waves with novices who don’t understand the etiquette can be challenging. The best waves tend to be in the early fall, and the early morning hours typically have less wind, so if you are competent with your board, you may want to avoid the busiest hours of the day.

The Beach at Mission Beach

On the sand itself, you can find plenty of people laying out, enjoying the fresh air and sunshine. Beach volleyball games pop up here and there, and in wintertime, you might be able to spot a water plume or two from migrating whales in the open water.

The Best Boardwalk in San Diego

Rather than an outdated wooden boardwalk, Mission Beach has a paved path that’s frequently packed with runners, walkers, joggers, cyclists, and even skateboarders and inline skaters. Clearly, there is no shortage of ways to move when you spend time in this beach community.

Belmont Park

And no trip to Mission Beach would be complete without spending at least a few hours at Belmont Park. This amusement park has traditional rides, including a classic wooden roller coaster, bumper cars, miniature golf and a carousel. Likewise, it has dining options from snacks to restaurants, shops and bike rentals, and a full calendar of special events throughout the year.

Stay Nearby at the Bahia Resort Hotel

The Bahia Resort Hotel is located right on Mission Bay Park in Mission Beach. It is just a stone's throw away from Belmont Park and the main beach at Mission Beach.

The resort also has a lot to offer guests; onsite activities include shuffleboard, tennis, swimming, exploring the tropical gardens and climbing at the children’s playground. Other resort options include seasonal volleyball, live music, ice cream socials, kids’ activities and movie nights at the pool.

How to Get There & Parking

Free Parking
Free Parking
Lot Parking
Lot Parking
Neighborhood Parking
Neighborhood Parking

Getting to Mission Beach

Are you ready to make your way to Mission Beach? You can find it at the main intersection of Mission Boulevard and West Mission Bay Drive. Take I-5 to the West Mission Bay Drive exit, and then continue straight until you get to Mission Boulevard. If you see a wooden roller coaster, you’re in the right place, near Belmont Park.

Parking in Mission Beach

The most parking in Mission Beach is near Belmont Park in South Mission Beach. This is also the most crowded part of Mission Beach. Parking it usually pretty easy here except on hot summer days and summer holidays, arrive early if it is one of these days.

If you would like to get less crowds come from the north end of Mission Beach. If you are coming from Pacific Beach just follow Mission Blvd south until you cross PB Drive. Once you see the Catamaran Resort Hotel & Spa you are in Mission Beach. Parking on the north end of Mission Beach can be very challenging. There is only one street that runs through the entire community so parking is limited to Mission Blvd.

There is daily street cleaning along Mission Blvd during the week, so look at the signs to avoid expensive parking tickets. There are 2 areas that have more parking, Santa Clara Point & El Carmel Point. Both of these points are along Mission Bay. If heading south on Mission Blvd, turn left on Santa Clara to park on Santa Clara Point. To get to El Carmel Point turn left on El Carmel, once you see the bay on both sides of you it is time to get lucky and find a spot!

Featured Activity

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Know Before You Go & Tips

Boardwalk
Boardwalk
Lifeguards
Lifeguards
No Alcohol
No Alcohol
No Camping
No Camping
No Glass Containers
No Glass Containers
No Motorized Vehicles
No Motorized Vehicles
No Smoking
No Smoking
No Trash Cans
No Trash Cans
Outdoor Showers
Outdoor Showers
Picnic Tables
Picnic Tables
Public Transportation
Public Transportation
Restrooms
Restrooms
Shade
Shade
Trash Cans Available
Trash Cans Available

Helpful Reminders

Find a Spot in the Sand

While Belmont Park is usually packed, the beach right in front of it isn’t, so you can claim a spot there.

Swimming & Surfing Zones

Swimming is only in designated zones, and you should look for signs to let you know if it’s a suitable place before you go in the water. If it is not a swimming zone it is a surfing zone. If you are unsure just ask a lifeguard.

Many Restrooms

There are plenty of public restrooms around the beaches. Just look for the lifeguard outposts, and if there isn’t one there, they can point you in the right direction.

Keep an Eye on your Things

This is a popular beach, with lots of people. Unfortunately, you can’t always trust that your personal belongings are safe if you leave them unattended.

Mission Beach
is Known For:
Surfing
Surfing
Know This:
Boardwalk
Boardwalk
Lifeguards
Lifeguards
Restrooms Available
Restrooms Available
Trash Cans Available
Trash Cans Available
This Month's Forecast
63℉ / 73℉
Partly Cloudy in June
Jul
67℉ / 77℉
Sunny in July
Aug
69℉ / 79℉
Sunny in August
Sep
67℉ / 79℉
Sunny in September

Stay Nearby

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