Sunset Cliffs Park in San Diego

If you are reading this and you haven’t been to the Sunset Cliffs in San Diego, stop and go visit them right now. This blog cannot do justice to the beauty and serene qualities of this little patch of coast in San Diego county. It is a must visit if you are down south. Here is a picture of just one of the spots.

Seriously though, who puts graffiti on this?

The area itself is a long stretch of coastline that has sheer cliffs that drop straight to the ocean below. It is not much of a hike, it is more of a two mile walk that you can take at whatever pace you would like and spend as little or as much time exploring the beauty. I say explore, as every 20 feet it seems like there is another drop that leads to a small secluded beach, sea cave, or even just another part of the cliffs that you can walk out on. This is great and provides so many options when checking out the cliffs, but make sure that you are careful with your footing as people have died in falls from the cliffs before.

My favorite part of this whole area is the little piece at the end in the Sunset Cliffs Park (directions at the bottom), where you can actually take stairs down around 100 feet to the coastline below. This stretch of the cliffs is where we spent most of our time and literally you could be here all day without getting bored. It is beautiful in whatever direction you pick and you can walk along the coast both ways for miles, check out the tidepools or even surf in the waves below.

While we were there we saw surfers, kids going to homecoming and even a wedding photography session taking place around us. I would have to say it is a great spot if you a photographer and are looking for something new for your clients. The tide pools didn’t offer a huge array of creatures but there were hundreds of sea anemone and even some small fish and crabs to look at. If you are going for tide pools I would consider Corona Del Mar instead but it is certainly a plus to have small tide pools with the background of these cliffs.

If the pictures haven’t convinced you to go yet I’m not sure what else could. Go check out the Sunset Cliffs in San Diego, preferably during the waning hours of the day, bring your significant other or your surfboard and bask in the beauty that you didn’t even know California’s crowded coastline could offer.

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Center map

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About JoshMc

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  • Suzee Myers

    Never been there but sure want to go now!

  • William Staley

    Hello Josh.
    I like the pics. San Diego is a nice city for food and fun.Gonna add this place to my list next time we head that way. My girlfriend and I visit Corona Del Mar all the time, so this is right up our alley. Was it high tide or low tide when you were there? As for the knuckleheads that decided to add their mark, I’m not impressed – find a constructive hobby.
    Keep up the good work.

    • josh

      You should definitely check it out it was amazing, Corona Del Mar is one of my favs too though. It was lower tide when I was at the sunset cliffs. Let me know if you know any cool spots in So Cal that you think I should check out!

  • William Staley

    Gosh. As for cool places to go, I’ve been to a ton of em’. I’ll throw one out there that’s a little outside So Cal and will make alot people raise an eyebrow – Death Valley. Wickedly hot in the summer, but pretty nice the rest of the year and even cold in the winter. About 3-1/2 hours drive and your there. It is a big NP, but there’s plenty to do there – hike in the sand dunes or Marble Canyon or Mosaic Canyon, Scotty’s Castle, Bad Water, the charcoal kilns, the Race Track (a dry lake bed, where rocks have mysyeriously slid across the flats, leaving scars on the playa) Ubehebe Crater, and more. As for photography, the colder months are best, as the sun is low in the sky, shadows more predominant, and the colors really come out in the golden hours. Spend at least 2-1/2 days there. Furnace Creek Ranch is a nice place to stay and eat.

    Other neat places – Julian in San Diego County, Calico Ghost Town (a little quirky, but still fun), Encounter Restuarant at Lax is a “trip” and alot a fun (sit on the international side to see the big planes), Living Desert out in the Palm Springs area. The list goes on and on. I’ll let you know if I think of one that is a must, but there all a must in my book.

    • JoshMc

      Thank you for posting all of these sites, I haven’t heard of half of them and will look into them all! I really appreciate you taking the time to give me ideas, let me know if you ever want to write a guest post!

  • drew

    Nice pictures! Your right on about the cliffs! I was first taken there back in 1998 by a good friend who grew up in San Diego, since then she’s relocated to the midwest. It’s funny how many times I’ve mentioned this place to a lot of people who relocated to San Diego and they’ve never been there. To this day I go back there when ever I get the chance, lots of good memories…..nice pics! Keep up the great work!

  • I have been living in San Diego for the last 6 years or so. Sunset Cliffs is definitely somewhere we always take people who are visiting from out of town. Very romantic! I’m sure more than a few proposals have happened there.

  • Hey josh,

    how crowd is this place generally?

    • When I was there, maybe 5 other people and a couple surfers were around. Im sure during summer weekend days it can get a lot more crazy but it wasnt bad when I went.

  • merlyn

    love your photos, what camera are you using?

    • These were shot with a Canon 60D. Thanks for the comment!

  • Candace Agnew

    Josh, is this a location that you could take your dog too, or is it NOT dog friendly?

    • I am not sure if dogs are allowed but it might be hard for a lot of dogs to even do as there are lots of rocks to climb on and such. Sorry I couldn’t be more help!

      • Candace Agnew

        No problem, I usually take Kodi every other weekend on whatever adventure I’m doing. Last weekend we did the Thousand Steps Beach and Crystal Cove and dogs aren’t allowed there.

        • Aww ok bummer, ya my bull dog is not much of a hiker so I don’t know many of the dog restrictions!