The Ocean Beach cliffs are one of the best kept secrets in San Diego. There is no place in California like the Ocean Beach walking cliffs because the experience is truly part romantic, breathtaking, Zen and artistic. Enjoy walking/hiking for several blocks on a bed of rocks that are amazingly flat and lie just above where the ocean waves break. Tide pools and beach petroglyphs – rock engravings are everywhere. Literally thousands of creative drawings and words are carved into the walking cliffs. The grooves in the rocks make excellent tide pools – naturally occurring living aquariums where you can see all sorts of sea life. The Ocean Beach walking, flat rock cliffs can be slippery so always where some good shoes and take the camera because you are guaranteed to get some amazing pictures of blue waves crashing, fun rock drawings and the natural tide pools.
Access to the cliffs is from the sidewalk area around the Niagara Avenue beach, only a few steps beyond the Ocean Beach Pier. The cliffs stretch a couple blocks and you can enter or exit the cliffs in a few different places by using the stairs up to the street. The cliffs are most spectacular on a sunny day, as watching the waves breaking along the rocks provides a spectacular view. The Ocean Beach walking cliffs are made up of soft rocks in which writing words and drawing small pictures is easy to do with any hard tool. Many of the rock pools with their trapped sea water provide you with a glimpse of sea life including small crabs, clams, mussels, plants and other small living creatures. The view to the south lets you see the cliffs of Sunset Cliffs and the view north lets you see the Ocean Beach Pier and the land beyond including the hills of La Jolla.
One of the most unique features of the Ocean Beach Cliffs is the rock art petroglyphs since the surface of the cliffs is perfect for easily creating rock engravings.
When you explore the tidepools in Ocean Beach during low tide you will have an opportunity to get personal with small marine life including shore crabs that move about, colorful anemones, an occasional small octopus, sponge-like dead man’s fingers. All of these sea creatures can delight kids while teaching them about marine life.