If you’re looking for something to do in San Diego that is truly unique to the area, witnessing the grunion run may be just what you’re looking for!
Grunions are a type of fish native to Southern California that are similar to sardines. During grunion season, which lasts from March through September, San Diego residents with a valid fishing license are invited to partake in Grunion Runs. On nights around the full moon, hundreds or even thousands of grunions come ashore to mate and spawn, creating a truly unique sight that you can only see in Southern California after sunset.
During Grunion Runs, residents can grab as many of these fish as they desire, as the grunion can be prepared into a variety of tasty dishes. Even if you’re not participating, it’s still worth visiting the beach to see the Grunion Run in action, as it’s an incredible natural event that seems like something out of a nature documentary, right before your eyes!
Grunion Runs typically take place at various beaches on Coronado Island, Mission Beach, and Imperial Beach. Note that the use of flashlights is restricted on the beach during Grunion Runs, and no tools may be used to catch the fish to minimize the environmental impact.
For the ultimate grunion run experience, consider booking a few nights at the historical Hotel Del Coronado, located right on the beach on picturesque Coronado beach.