Like Pacific Beach to the south, North Pacific Beach attracts large crowds of beachgoers in the summer, and extends approximately one mile from the north end of the community of Pacific Beach to the south end of the community of La Jolla. Overlooking the beach are cliffs of up to 75 feet in height, with a cliff-top sidewalk spanning south end of the beach.
Families may prefer this northern quiet stretch of beach over its more rowdy southern neighbor Pacific Beach, with its lifeguard supervised swimming areas and facilities at the ends of Law and Diamond Streets.
At the north end of the beach is Tourmaline Surfing Park, which includes a public parking lot and limited facilities. This area is heavily used by surfers year round.
The Ocean Front Pacific Beach Boardwalk begins on the north end at Law Street Park and extends to Crystal Pier. Access to the beach is provided at several sections along the boardwalk. For picnicking and relaxing, two parks are adjacent to the beach: grassy Law Street Park atop the bluff providing great views; and Pacific Beach Park bordering the boardwalk and extending from Diamond Street to Crystal Pier.
The boardwalk is a lovely place for walking or bicycling, located primarily in a residential area, although several shops and restaurants are found near or at Crystal Pier, including the popular breakfast spot Kono's Surf Club Café.
- Lifeguard Protection:
- Lifeguards are staffed at this beach year round, generally from 9:00 a.m. to dusk. Check with lifeguards for specific staff hours.
- Rip Currents:
- Most California beaches experience strong rip currents. The safety tips section on the government's website provides an explanation of rip currents and some methods of freeing yourself if caught in a rip current. The best advice is to swim near a lifeguard.
- Regulated Water Activity Zones:
- This beach has separate water areas reserved for swimming and surfing. Check with lifeguards for details.
- Surfing is permitted at this beach.
- This beach is not recommended for scuba due to lack of undersea life, heavy water activity, and surf.
- Restrooms and Showers:
- Public restrooms and showers are located at the foot of Diamond Street and Law Street on the south end and at Tourmaline Surfing Park, on the north end.
- Disabled Accessibility:
- Due to the natural cliffs bordering this beach, disabled accessibility is limited. Pacific Beach at the foot of Grand Avenue, just south of Crystal Pier, would be a better alternative.
- Beach Fires:
- Containers for beach fires are generally provided during summer months and available on a first come, first served basis. The burning of rubbish is prohibited. Only wood, charcoal, or paper products may be used as fuel. Fuel for the fire may not exceed a height of more than twelve inches above the upper edge of the fire container. The fire must be extinguished before leaving the beach. Open beach fires outside containers are prohibited at all San Diego beaches.
- Standard San Diego beach regulations apply. Please check the government website for a full regulation list.