Carlsbad is a city on the northern coast of San Diego County. There are eight beautiful beaches along its sprawling shoreline.
In spite of their breathtaking natural beauty, you typically won’t find the beaches of Carlsbad as overwhelmed by visitors as you might in some other parts of Southern California, making each one of them a great getaway spot for rest and relaxation.
Tamarack Surf Beach, also known as Carlsbad State Beach, is the perfect destination for a laidback day in the sun. There’s plenty of room to be active, as well: Tamarack Beach is a well-known surf spot, and the 4-mile-long Carlsbad Seawall makes for a scenic path for walking, jogging, rollerblading, and biking.
Swimming, sunbathing, surfing, kayaking, windsurfing, and scuba diving.
The Carlsbad jetties, located at the beach and near the South Carlsbad State Beach campgrounds, are popular areas for fishing.
Walking, jogging, cycling, roller blading, and dolphin watching along the seawall are also popular activities.
Restrooms, showers, lifeguards, water fountains, and picnic tables. Surf chairs for beach accessibility are available upon request.
Limited free parking available on Carlsbad Boulevard and nearby residential streets. Pay lots available further south at Ponto Beach.
Beach hours are 5 a.m. to 10 p.m. every day.
For those looking for overnight accommodations, Tamarack Beach Resort and Hotel sits a mere twelve feet away from Carlsbad State Beach at 3200 Carlsbad Avenue.
If roughing it is more your style, Tamarack Beach lies just north of South Carlsbad State Beach, a popular place for year-round camping. The campsites sit on top of bluffs overlooking the ocean. Campers can access the beach below via a number of long staircases.
Amenities include restrooms, showers, lifeguards, fire pits, and a camp store. Free day-use parking just south of the campground. Book early as sites fill up quickly.
Batiquitos Lagoon Nature Preserve is also nearby. The Lagoon is one of the last remaining tidal wetlands on the coast of Southern California. It offers trails and guided nature walks where you can observe the wildlife and learn about the wetlands.
The warm water jetties that can be found at Carlsbad State Beach are created by the Encinitas Power Plant, which uses water from the ocean to cool its machinery. When the water is sent back into the ocean, it’s notably warmer than the water it’s merging with.
Address: Carlsbad Blvd and Tamarack Avenue, Carlsbad, CA 92008
Season: Year round