Huntington beaches are among the broadest, sandiest, most easily accessible beaches along the Southern California coast. Just park (for a fee), and you're there. These beaches are best known for their fantastic surfing, but they're also popular with families and beach lovers of every stripe.
For 8.5 miles, a paved multi-use path runs parallel to the beach and Pacific Coast Highway. In fact, the path starts in Sunset Beach and extends all the way down through the Newport Peninsula, for a grand total of about 12 miles. It's very popular with bicyclists and roller-bladers.
Another popular feature of Huntington beaches are the fire rings - about 1,000 of them. These large concrete encasements are available on a first come, first served basis. On summer weekends and holidays, you might need to stake your claim early if you hope to have an evening bonfire. Firewood is available from concessionaires and local supermarkets.
Huntington Beaches are listed from north to south.
This beach for dog lovers is located at the northern end of Huntington City Beach, between Seapoint Avenue and 21st Street. This is one of the very few beaches where you can take your dog in southern California.
Dogs are allowed off-leash, but you must maintain control of the dog, and you must pick up after it. There are some 60 dog bag dispensers to make the task easier, and you can also pick up cleaning utensils from employees at the beach.
Metered parking is available in lots along Pacific Coast Highway. Be sure to bring plenty of change; it's 25 cents for 10 minutes.
For more information see Huntington Dog Beach.
This is HB's world-famous surfing beach, site of numerous surf competitions. Most of the action centers around the Huntington Beach Pier (see below).
Surfing is taken very seriously indeed on the north side of the pier, where the larger waves are best left to experienced surfers. On the south side, surfing is not allowed during the summer months (blackballed, indicated by a flag with a black dot in the center), for the protection of swimmers.
But surfing and swimming are not the only activities. There are more than a dozen beach volleyball courts, and the paved path that parallels Pacific Coast Highway attracts bicyclists and rollerbladers.
Facilities include food and surf equipment concessions, sand volleyball courts, fire rings, outdoor showers, beach wheelchairs, and wheelchair accessible restrooms and access ramps.
The beach is located off Pacific Coast Highway from Seapoint Avenue to Beach Boulevard. Fee parking lots are at First Street, Huntington Street and Beach Boulevard. You'll find stairways to the beach between First Street and Beach Boulevard.
RV camping is allowed at the Sunset Vista Recreational Vehicle Campground, operated by the City of Huntington Beach. It's open from October 1 through early spring. The maximum stay is 14 nights per month. Reservations can be made in person or by mail. Call (714) 536-5286 for applications. The campground is located just south of the Pier, opposite First Street.
People who love people will love the area around the HB Pier and the nearby Pier Plaza Promenade. This is where the action is - sports competitions of various sorts, live concerts, a weekly farmer's market, special events, and people milling about between the beach and the shops and eateries in downtown HB.
The pier is an impressive structure indeed; at 1,850 feet it's the longest municipal pier in California. Rebuilt in 1992, it towers high above the surf, and there are benches and pay scopes for taking in the view.
Fishing is popular here, and free. There are snack bars; several stores selling souvenirs, kites and the like; a bait and tackle shop and a restaurant. The pier is floodlit at night for fishing and surfing. Facilities include fish cleaning stations, wheelchair-accessible restrooms, a state-of-the-art lifeguard tower, and daily postings of surf and water conditions. Fee parking is available at 5th St. and Pacific Coast Highway.
This broad, sandy beach extends for two miles from Beach Boulevard to the Santa Ana River. It's a popular spot for families. During the summer, surfing is blackballed for the safety of swimmers, bodysurfers and body-boarders. Surf-fishing and clamming, basketball, rollerblading, jogging, cycling, and picnicking are also popular activities.
A California Least Tern nature preserve is located at the southern end of the beach, and across the street is the Talbert Marsh.
Facilities include picnic areas and barbecues, beach volleyball courts, a basketball court, food concessions, outdoor cold showers, wheelchair-accessible restrooms, a two mile long multi-use path, beach wheelchair, and six wheelchair access ramps that reach almost to the water.
Fee parking lots and pedestrian access are located at Beach Boulevard, Newland Street, Magnolia Street and Brookhurst Street. Limited street parking nearby. Rangers and lifeguards are on duty all year.
For more information see Huntington State Beach.
This restored salt marsh is located across from Huntington State Beach. It's a good spot for bird-watching. There's a paved wheelchair accessible path with interpretive signs that connects to the Santa Ana River Trail. Parking is available off of Brookhurst Street.