(Closed) Heard california had crappy beaches

posted 8 years ago in Travel
Post # 3
3618 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: November 2011

I’ve lived in Southern California my whole life so I”m not sure if that’s why I would agree that we have crappy beaches here. The “nice” ones still have gross FREEZING cold waters. You won’t find clear blue waters here…and the sand is super rough and hot and not fun to walk in.

Post # 4
1623 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

@cassandra102012:  What constitutes the “perfect beach” is entirely subjective. What qualities are you interested in?  Secluded areas to have sweet conversations? Amazing waves for surfing? A vibrant boardwalk experience for things to do beside swim and sun?  Do you prefer a place with lots of people or very few? 

Also there are multiple beaches you can drive to in any beach area. I grew up in a “beach area” and depending on my preference at the time I would just drive to the beach that most reflected what I wanted that day. The next day I could go somewhere else for a different atmosphere.  California and Florida are good in that there are many beaches nearby each other.  So you should not restrict yourself to any one beach.

As for staying with great-aunt….I’d avoid it if financially possible. In fact, Fiance saying that CA doesn’t have good beaches sounds more like an excuse not have to stay with his great aunt.

Post # 5
406 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2013

There are some great beaches and some crappy beaches!  It’s a huge state!  Where does his aunt live?

Post # 6
680 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

Lol, it’s true. I don’t have pics but… Just imagine brown water, brown sand, trash, and seaweed. The best beaches in So Cal(in my opinion) are in Huntington, near Laguna, and in San Diego. But even those aren’t like the beaches you see in movies. Our water is a grey-brown. I didn’t know there was such a thing as blue ocean water till I went to Honduras. I thought it was a myth! Lol 

ETA: I know nothing about beaches in Nor Cal. The “nasty” beaches are mostly located in big cities. Stay away from Long Beach and Venice for sure!

Post # 7
3373 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2011

I’ve been all around the country and I believe that the west coast of Florida has the prettiest beaches with warm water, nice clean sand. Destin, Tampa, etc. East coast of Florida is a bit choppier water. I always thought Hilton Head had nice beaches too.

I haven’t spent too many vacations in CA, but from what I’ve seen, they’re very crowded and polluted.

Post # 8
228 posts
Helper bee

Northern California beaches aren’t great. They’re cold and rocky, and I generally don’t recommend going there to swim. But as pp said, it’s s big state… In any case, if you want a nice beach, I would go to Hawaii. Not Waikiki, but somewhere less touristy.

Post # 9
1140 posts
Bumble bee

California isn’t the south pacific so unless it’s 100 degrees out, the water is still cold, it’s rocky and mainly people just lay on the beach and not really swim in the water unless you are surfing in southern cali with a wet suit on. I love hanging out in New Port Beach, Seal Beach, spent many summers there.

I wouldnt call them crappy…it sure beats where I am today…HORRIBLE mid west Missouri with no water.

If you want a nice beach, try Hawaii. Nothing wrong with Waikiki, especially if you have never been to Hawaii before. But for more seclusion,  I would do the North Shore (Turtle Bay) or the other less touristy islands such as Maui or Kona.

for the record I was born and raised in California and lived in Hawaii for two years. 

South Florida has gorgeous beaches but is spendy!

Post # 10
26 posts
  • Wedding: September 2009

Having lived in FL and Hawaii and currently in Cali I would have to agree that California beaches suck.


Sorry to Californians.  The water is super cold, the sand is granular, the waves are rough, it’s usually dirty (i’ve seen the weirdest things on completely desolate beaches), it’s windy.  It’s nice to walk or jog (with a jacket on) for maybe 20 minutes and I’m done.  I like to surf/snorkel but wet suits and great whites aren’t my thing.  Someone got eaten a month after we moved here.


Florida beaches are much nicer. The sand is like sugar, the gulf is nice and warm and calm, and you won’t have to deal with pollution. Summer is too hot. The spring is really nice and September-ish. Winter can be cold. Fishing, boating, jet skis, etc are great but snorkeling isn’t. The panhandle (Panama City area), the west coast (Siesta Key) are really nice. The east coast has bluer water, cooler, but the sand isn’t as nice. Miami is fun and the sand is imported but it can get pricey there.  I really enjoy Miami due to the food, culture, nightlife, and beaches.  Other beach towns are very sleepy. The Keys have no beaches to speak of.  They’re pretty boring unless you have access to a boat for fishing / scuba / snorkeling (awesome).


That said, Hawaii is the ultimate winner for me as far as beaches in the US. There is a beach for everyone – sleepy bays, beginnner waves, reef snorkeling, fishing trips, mountain hikes, every kind of entertainment you can imagine, beautiful resorts, great food, warm water, etc etc.  If you want more action it’s Oahu, less so then Maui, old school Hawaii then Kauai or big island. You could do them all really.


Another option is Puerto Rico. It’s still in the US with great beaches, sand , etc. it has great culture and food to enjoy as well as resorts.  Without the safety issues of some other islands down there. It’s the Hawaii of the Caribbean.



Post # 11
7288 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2011

I think florida is great! Try the west coast- white sands, blue waters etc and there are great deals. Also it depends on what time of the year you go. Yea, south florida like Miami area is crazy off the hook but thats cause its more of an affluent celeb type place, however, the whole state is surrounded by water on both sides! Tons of beaches, towns and sweet stuff!

Post # 12
9967 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2012

I have to put in a plug for North Carolina (and South Carolina) beaches.  Our water is blue-green and warm and the sand is lovely, soft and white.  You should come here!  Smile

I used to live in CA, too, and I’d have to agree that the beaches aren’t the most pristine, I consider them “rugged.”  Beautiful in their own way, but rugged.

Post # 13
1729 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

I live in Hawaii but before moving here, I’d been to beaches near San Diego / Oceanside and I thought they were great. The people I was with complained the water was way too cold (it was July) but I didn’t think so.

However, now that I live in Hawaii – I’d definitely have to recommend our lovely Aloha state – the beaches are gorgeous with clean water and nice sand. I live on O’ahu and the beaches all have a different personality, from the bustling Waikiki beach to the breezy, laid back Waimanalo beach, to the dreamy Lanikai beach, to the North Shore beaches with big waves (in the winter)…

Post # 14
1100 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

I live in Cali and we make tons of trips a year to the beach to camp on the dunes, BUT we go for the dunes, atv riding, bon fires, etc, we do NOT go camping at the beach for the beach lol the water is cold and dirty.  But it really depends on where you go, we just camp at this beach bc it’s one of the only beaches you can drive on/camp on.

You really won’t find a beach with warm water, I think most of us go to the beach lay out on the sand and bask in the sun.

Not sure if Hawaii is an option, but I also agree with it. Been there 3 times and will be going for our honeymoon, I love their warm water!

Post # 15
5843 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: May 2011

I’m biased being from Tampa but I don’t think you can beat a Gulf Coast beach. Sarasota/Destin is not going to be as expensive as Miami. The only east coast beaches I would consider would be South/Miami beach, I don’t care for Daytona.

Post # 16
672 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

Like what many other posters said, it depends what is “perfect” and what you want the beach for. I live 20 minutes from Malibu, and while I think it is gorgeous and I enjoy laying out on the beach, the water is FREEZING, so I never go in. There are gorgeous sunsets!

If you want a honeymoon with an amazing beach (#1 priority), I wouldn’t choose CA. But if you want a beach, and other things to do, I think CA is a good option. I would suggest San Diego or Laguna/Newport beach. Malibu is nice to visit for a day, but not much else around it


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