Natural Bridges State Beach: A Beach & A Sunset You Will Never Want To Leave

Oh Pacific Coast Highway, why are you so amazing? This small beach located 2 minutes off Highway One in Santa Cruz holds a rock arch that would even put Pfieffer State Beach to shame. It is a majestic and beautiful full arch about 15 feet out in the water that haunts you with its beauty and beckons you to take more and more pictures. If you haven’t seen it then you might as well stop reading this post and go now.

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Details

  • 10 dollars to enter the park
  • Closes at sunset

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The beach itself is about a 5 minute walk from the parking lot and there is street parking outside of the lot if you are able to find it which will save you the park fee. I am always a fan of paying the fees though as it helps to keep the parks in business.

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I recommend heading to the overlook first to get a good view of the beach below. This is also a great place to watch the sunset if you are looking for one.

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After checking out the overlook head down the sand to the beach below and either set up your spot for a full beach day or just head over to the rock to gawk at it.

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The rock itself is about 40 feet long and 25 feet tall. The arch is strong and has a 15 foot wide cut out the whole way through. It is easy to take a good picture here as you just need to get a dead on angle and snap away.

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The rock used to be connected to the cliffs next to it, which is where the name “Natural Rock Bridges” came from. The other arch crumbled a while ago though so now it is a dingle bridge. You can walk through the two for view from the backside.

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I would not recommend trying to swim out to it as the waves go through it pretty fast and you are liable to get hurt during it. It’s best viewed from afar anyway.  Here are some photos I took of it at sunset.

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Sunset is an amazing time to be at the beach , the colors and the beauty of this small coastal town are blown out through the orange hues. The people actually start to leave when the sunsets and they are replaced with photographers as it is an easily accessible spot with amazing payoffs for shooting the sunset.

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So whether you are spending an entire day or just a sunset here you need to see this beach. It is a beautiful example of the California coast and one that is sure to make your friends back home jealous when they see the pictures. I would love to hear your thoughts on this beach in the comments below.

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About JoshMc

Thanks for checking out the blog, I am happy to be sharing my adventures with you! You can get to know me by reading my about me, which includes a video and additional information on the site, myself and my full disclosure. Also, follow along on Twitter here or read all of my posts on this blog here.

  • Kiran Chari

    Josh, Thank You for this post… we went there on Saturday and had fun with the kids!

    • Thanks for the comment and for sharing your photo, nice work it is beautiful! I love that spot and I wish I lived closer to it!

      • Kiran Chari

        Live 60 miles away and takes us 2 hrs to get there 🙁

        • Gotta love the California traffic right?

  • Glory

    Love your blog- planning our 2016 family camping vacay
    Thinking about staying at Henry Cowell state Park, but you don’t have a write up on it?

  • Rebecca

    This is such a great blog. Planning a family Road Trip from the Uk and your photos are inspiring. Thank you!

    • Thanks for the comment, glad the blog has been helpful!