Summertime Rolling: Bay Area & Central Coast Beaches

A friend and new California transplant asked about beaches in the Bay Area. Though the coastline doesn’t compare to the sunny, warm, and fog-free paradise of Southern Cali, here in the northerly reaches of the golden state,  sun-worshipping on the coast is hard to come by but the views are gob-smacking gorgeous. From Morro Bay all the way up to the national border, the land literally falls off steep jagged cliffs. Cypress pines or towering redwoods cling to the last bit of earth before the Pacific comes roaring in with constant crashes and booms. Though the sea-scape is breath-taking, there’s only a certain window of time, where an admirer can gape at the horizon before the wind kicks up and chases you away.

Be warned, because of the cold clime, rough rip currents, a shelf that drops away suddenly, and the threat of great whites, make swimming a dare devil act. With that said, here’s a list of rough and ragged corners of heaven on earth:

San Francisco (these beaches are likely to be foggy and cold year round save for autumn)

  • Ocean Beach
  • Crissy Field


2-3 hour drive south (the further south the better swimming)

4-5 hour drive south

And no trip along the California coastline would be complete with a jiving soundtrack:

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