Tourmaline Surf Park

Considered one of San Diego's most laid-back surf spots, Tourmaline Beach Surf Park is a fun destination with a lot to offer visitors.
Why you'll love this beach
Why you'll love this beach
Spend a Laid-back Day Watching the Surfers at Tourmaline Beach Surf Park
Tourmaline Surf Park
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

A surfing only beach, Tourmaline Beach Surf Park is a beautiful stretch of sand and surf situated to the north of Pacific Beach, or just PB to locals, and just south of upscale La Jolla. Though a popular surfing mecca in San Diego, Tourmaline is actually known for its gentle, slow-rolling waves. Novice, intermediate and advanced surfers alike can all get their surf fix at this PB park.

Unlike the majority of the beaches in Southern California, Tourmaline Beach is a no-swim zone. However, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t grab your towels, a good book and a swimsuit and head down. The vast stretch of sand serves as a good spot to watch the surfers, windsurfers and kiteboarders against the horizon and a great place to socialize and interact with locals.

Go Surfing with Go Pass!

La Jolla - Surf Board Rental
La Jolla - Surf Board Rental
La Jolla is home to some of the world's best beaches for surfing, and with your Go Pass, you can enjoy this experience. Whether you are a rookie or a pro, get a full day Surf Board rental. The waters are perfect for those learning.
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Local Tips
What activities does the Go Pass include?

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

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

Things to Do

Kiteboarding
Kiteboarding
Paddle Boarding
Paddle Boarding
Sunbathing
Sunbathing
Surfing
Surfing
Tide Pooling
Tide Pooling
Windsurfing
Windsurfing

What’s the Hype?

The Surf

Though, on a good day, the waves at Tourmaline can reach between 4 to 5 feet in height, the swells are far from treacherous, and the conditions almost always serene.

There are three surf spots surfers can surf at here: Old Man’s, which are slow and mushy; Channels, which are small but fast waves; and Pumphouse, which offers classic beach breaks. You will find mostly longboarders in this area, though shortboards are not unheard of and certainly not unwelcome.

The waves at Tourmaline Beach are consistent and laid-back, as is the crowd. The crowd is mostly friendly and non-aggressive, and surfers are there for the same reason you are — to be one with the ocean and squeeze a daily surf-sesh in between everyday responsibilities.

Spend the Day

Whether you visit as a surfer or as an observer, you can easily spend an entire day at Tourmaline Beach Surf Park. It is not uncommon for visitors to begin their mornings in the water, spend the days socializing and picnicking, and in the tide pools at low tide. If you are lucky you might catch a glimpse of a Pacific Octopus or a starfish!

Walk the Beaches of PB

If you walk to the north, you will eventually enter Linda Way Beach Access. Though it lacks Tourmaline’s soft sand, it is replete with tide pools that are home to a myriad of sea creatures. If you walk southbound, you will come across Crystal Pier, a serene and favored fishing spot, and a perfect place to stroll and take in the scenery.

Stay Nearby and Explore More

Pacific Beach is the perfect place to stay at while visiting San Diego. The Beach Haven hotel is a great little hotel that is just next to the beach in North Pacific Beach walking distance to Tourmaline Surf Park. The spacious rooms, an elegant black and white interior design, large windows and natural sunlight all combine to create a home away from home during your stay.

How to Get There & Parking

Free Parking
Free Parking
Lot Parking
Lot Parking

Getting to Tourmaline

Tourmaline Beach Surf Park is located in the north of PB, off La Jolla Boulevard and at the end of Tourmaline Street. To get there from either the north or south exit the I-5 at Garnet / Balboa exit and head west to the beach. Take the right fork in the road on to Garnet and follow it all the way to almost the beach. Turn right on Mission Blvd and then continue until it hits La Jolla Blvd and turn left. Once you hit Tourmaline street hang a left down the hill into the parking lot.

Parking at or near Tourmaline

It has a free adjacent parking lot, though it is small and can fill up quickly during the summer months. However, turnover is high, as many people, as mentioned above, visit just to get in a quick surf session. If you have patience, you shouldn’t have to wait long for a spot to free up.

If you don’t have patience, you can always find street parking. Given the busy nature of PB, though, it may take you longer to find a spot and walk back to the beach than had you just waited for a spot to open up.

Featured Activity

La Jolla Surfing Lesson
Surf Lessons in La Jolla
Ride the waves in La Jolla, a premiere surfing destination! This 90-minute lesson is fit for both beginners & intermediate surfers, with a choice of private or public lessons. All necessary equipment is included. Surfs up!
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Know Before You Go & Tips

Disabled Accessibility
Disabled Accessibility
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
Outdoor Showers
Outdoor Showers
Public Transportation
Public Transportation
Restrooms
Restrooms
Trash Cans Available
Trash Cans Available

Things to Know

Be Respectful

Tourmaline Beach Surf Park is a laidback park frequented by a laidback crowd. Most of the surfers are easy going and just there to have fun, while beachgoers are there to socialize and soak up the sun. The main rules are: Don’t litter, don’t be a nuisance and show respect, for the sea life, the beach and others.

Facilities Available

As a sort of “attraction,” Tourmaline has all the standard amenities you might expect from a sunbathing beach. Those include restrooms along the sidewalks, lifeguards, public showers and benches.

Tourmaline Park is a dog-friendly park, during certain times. If you want to bring Fido, plan ahead and check to see which times dogs are allowed. Typically, dogs are welcome between before 9 a.m. and after 6 p.m., though those hours change with the seasons.

Look out for the Reef

Though Tourmaline is a laid back beach destination, it is not free of hazards. Tourmaline itself is made up of a sandy bottom, but if you stray too far north, you will enter PB Point, or False Point, the bottom of which is just the opposite.

PB Point is replete with underwater rocks and reef that cannot be seen at high tide. If you can’t turn your board, and if you’re not an experienced surfer, pay extra attention to not let your board stray too far north.

Summer Crowds

If you plan to surf Tourmaline during the peak months, know that it can get overcrowded. Remain vigilant while in the water, as it's not unheard of for a surfer to catch a wayward board to the head.

Hazards to Avoid

Finally, remember that Tourmaline is a natural park, and as such, you will come across wildlife. Some of that wildlife is not so friendly. Stingrays love to burrow in the sandy bottom of Tourmaline, so tread carefully (shuffle your feet to avoid stepping on them).

Tourmaline Surf Park
is Known For:
Surfing
Surfing
Know This:
Lifeguards
Lifeguards
Outdoor Showers
Outdoor Showers
Restrooms Available
Restrooms Available
Tide Pools
Tide Pools
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

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