Torrey Pines State Beach runs for three miles between Carmel Valley Road and the Glider Ports at Torrey Pines Scenic Drive. The north section where the highway runs adjacent to the beach is the choice for swimming and other traditional activities.
Torrey Pines State Park (adjacent to torrey pines beach) is a 1750 acre reserve dedicated to preserving its namesake, the Torrey Pine tree (which grows only here) and other indigenous wildlife in its native environment.
Hiking trails take visitors through the reserve among the Torrey pines (one of the rarest varieties of pine in the world), wildflowers, and other plants and animals with panoramic views of the ocean.
The hike from the top of Torrey Pines State Park (starting at the visitor?s center) to the beach below is one of the most rewarding in all of southern California. Bring your bathing suit so you can take a swim!
This beach has bathrooms, showers, lifeguards and a safe spot for kids to play by the lagoon.
Torrey Pines State Park and Beach are both administrated by the park system. Bathroom facilities and lifeguard headquarters are found at the north end of the beach near the Penasquitos Lagoon. There are additional facilities at the park entrance and headquarters, with additional lifeguard supervision along the beach in the summer. Guided nature tours are offered in the park on Saturdays and Sundays. For info call: 858-755-2063.
From the 5 FWY exit Carmel Valley Road west to Torrey Pines Road south (aka Pacific Coast Highway). There are four parking options. The first is the large-capacity lot on the left side of Carmel Valley just before reaching the coast. Option two is the roadside parking along the southbound shoulder of PCH. Options three and four are both within the State Park at the south end of the beach. An entrance fee ($4.00 per vehicle) is collected at the gate which is open from 8am until sunset daily. The lower, beach level lot is directly beyond the gate, with additional parking around the park headquarters and trailheads at the top end of the road.
Tips & Suggestions
Some of the park trails are long and strenuous, others short and easy. Fitness-minded runners love the workout but not all visitors do. Ask the rangers for advice. No alcohol or pets are allowed in the park and food may be consumed only at the beach - not on any trails.
There is no permanent lifeguard supervision anywhere below the bluffs at Torrey Pines. Lifeguards and park rangers sporadically patrol the beaches, but it is a swim-at-your-own-risk zone and a zone that can be risky indeed, especially toward Blacks Beach with its notoriously powerful surf and strong currents.