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The “clothing optional” nude beaches in California aren’t that hard to find if you know where to look. As you can see from the map there are areas that are void of nude beaches (all of Los Angeles County for example), but each region of the state has some. The San Francisco Bay Area and Santa Cruz have the highest concentration of clothes-free options. Below is a list of the official and unofficial nude beaches in California sorted from south to north.

Note that you should obey all city, county, state, and federal laws whether posted or not. Some of these beaches don’t allow nudity legally, but have accepted it socially. Many of these beaches have a clothing-optional “zone” or area which might be at the far north or south end of the beach. Read our beach descriptions as we try to indicate where these nude areas are located.

Beaches on this map

  • South Blacks Beach La Jolla bryce16 (5)

    South Black’s Beach

    The southern section of Black’s Beach, also known as Torrey Pines City Beach, is accessible through a gate at the intersection of Blackgold Road and La Jolla Farms Road. Find […]

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  • Blacks Beach La Jolla Bryce apr16 (6)

    Black’s Beach

    Black’s Beach is a famous clothing-optional beach below the gliderport parking area on Torrey Pines Mesa. Blacks is a combo of Torrey Pines City Beach and Torrey Pines State Beach. […]

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    Boneyard Beach

    Boneyard Beach is located below a very steep cliff between Swami’s Beach and D Street Beach in Encinitas, CA. Boneyards is a dry sandy beach at medium and low tides and […]

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  • San Onofre Bluffs Nude Beach Bryce Apr16 (6)

    San Onofre State Beach – Nude Area

    The clothing-optional area of San Onofre State Beach is located south of the main state park beaches. There are six numbered hiking trails (numbered 1 to 6 north to south) […]

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    More Mesa Beach

    More Mesa Beach is a narrow beach hidden away below the bluffs of More Mesa Park in Santa Barbara. Due to its seclusion it has a reputation as a clothing-optional […]

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  • San Onofre Gaviota DC-BS March2015 (8)

    San Onofre Beach at Gaviota State Park

    San Onofre Beach is a clothing-optional beach on Gaviota State Park property in Santa Barbara County. The access to this beach is not via the main park entrance. There is […]

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  • Vista Del Mar Gaviota BS-DC March2015 (11)

    Vista Del Mar Beach

    Vista Del Mar Beach is a narrow sandy beach between San Onofre Beach and the main beach at Gaviota State Park in Santa Barbara County. Technically this beach is on […]

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    Pirate’s Cove Beach

    Pirate’s Cove is a well-known clothing optional beach between Avila Beach and the Shell Beach area of Pismo Beach, CA. This south-facing cove is somewhat protected from the weather and […]

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    Fuller’s Beach

    Fuller’s Beach is a little-known remote beach along the north Big Sur coast. It’s mostly used by dedicated surfers and shy nudists. This rocky beach is just north of Grimes […]

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  • Beautiful beach and coastline in central California

    Garrapata State Park – Garrapata Beach

    Garrapata Beach at Garrapata State Park is located along the northern Big Sur coastline about ten miles south of Carmel-by-the-Sea, CA. The waterfront of the park is four miles long, […]

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    Carmel Meadows Beach

    Carmel Meadows Beach is the nickname for the portion of Carmel River State Beach that is adjacent to the Carmel Meadows housing community. It’s a wide sandy west-facing beach with […]

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  • TheCraterSandCityCA2015 (12)

    The Crater Beach

    “The Crater” and its adjacent beach are best-known as a clothing-optional area, but should be known for the sandy playground that they comprise. The Crater is a huge depression in […]

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  • indian-head-beach

    Indian Head Beach

    Indian Head Beach is a remote sandy beach between Marina State Beach and Fort Ord State Park Beach. In the past this area has been known as a clothing-optional beach […]

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    Privates Beach

    Privates Beach is a private beach in the Opal Cliffs area of Santa Cruz, CA. It’s known as a locals surfers beach. This great surfing spot requires a key to […]

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    Strawberry Beach at Wilder Ranch State Park

    Strawberry Beach is a remote sandy beach in Wilder Ranch State Park north of Santa Cruz, CA. It’s probably the least visited beach in the park and is a great […]

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    3 Mile Beach at Wilder Ranch State Park

    3 Mile Beach at Wilder Ranch State Park is a secluded sandy beach west of Santa Cruz. It requires quite a hike along the Ohlone Bluffs Trail from the Four Mile […]

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  • Sunset over four mile beach santa cruz

    4 Mile Beach at Wilder Ranch State Park

    4 Mile Beach at Wilder Ranch State Park is the most accessible beach open to the public in the park. Luckily this is one of the nicest and largest beaches […]

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    Laguna Creek Beach

    Laguna Creek Beach, near Santa Cruz, is a remote and wide sandy beach with a creek, wetlands, unique rocks, and wild waves. It is located just north of the infamous […]

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    Hole-in-the-Wall Beach

    Hole-in-the-Wall Beach is located immediately south of Panther Beach between Santa Cruz and the town of Davenport, CA. The only access to Hole in the Wall Beach is by walking […]

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  • IMG_7288 (Large)

    Panther Beach

    Panther Beach is a popular sandy beach north of Santa Cruz near the hamlet of Davenport, CA. It’s part of the Coast Dairies State Park land acquisition and will eventually […]

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    Bonny Doon Beach

    Boony Doon Beach is a stunning beach backed by dunes and otherwise surrounded by high cliff walls. It is located at the intersection of the Highway 1 and Bonny Doon […]

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    Davenport Cove Beach

    Davenport Cove is locally known by several different names including Shark Fin Cove and Shark’s Tooth Beach because of the huge rock in the mouth of the cove that looks like […]

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  • IMG_6269 (Large)

    San Gregorio Private Beach

    San Gregorio Private Beach is a clothing-optional beach on private property just north of the state-owned land in San Gregorio State Beach. It’s considered to be the first nude beach […]

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    Gray Whale Cove Nude Beach

    Edun Beach is the nickname for the clothing-optional beach area of Gray Whale Cove State Beach. The clothes-free area of the state beach is to the right at the bottom […]

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  • IMG_3504 (Large)

    North Baker Beach

    North Baker Beach is the clothing-optional area of Baker Beach in San Francisco. Starting at Baker Beach, as you walk north it becomes more likely that you’ll see beachgoers sans […]

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    Marshall Beach

    Marshall Beach is a long narrow secluded beach that stretches from the Golden Gate Bridge south to North Baker Beach. Because of the seclusion below steep cliffs it is one […]

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    Black Sands Beach

    Black Sands Beach is a south-facing beach below the Marin Headlands in Golden Gate National Recreation Area. There are great views to be had just a few paces down the […]

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    South Rodeo Beach

    South Rodeo Beach is a small beach in a secluded cove south of Rodeo Beach in the Marin Headlands. It has a reputation as a clothing-optional beach. At low tide you […]

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  • Little B at Muir Beach Bryce April2015 (11)

    Little Beach at Muir Beach

    Little Beach is a popular clothing-optional beach located in a cove at the north end of Muir Beach (the beach) in the small town of Muir Beach, CA. The area […]

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  • RedRockBeachFromTheTrail

    Red Rock Beach

    Red Rock Beach is a clothing-optional beach just south of Stinson Beach, CA. The trail access is steep so be prepared with good shoes. This remote beach is part of […]

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  • RCA Beach Bolinas Bryce April 2015 (2) (Large)

    RCA Beach

    RCA Beach is a clothing-optional beach at the south end of Point Reyes Peninsula just outside the National Seashore boundary. RCA used to have a separate access via steep trails […]

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  • Sculptured Beach

    Sculptured Beach

    Sculptured Beach is a remote beach in the southern portion of Point Reyes National Seashore. The beach is accessible by walking or mountain biking from the Point Reyes Hostel via […]

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  • Baker Beach Trinidad Bryce June2015 (8)

    Baker Beach

    Baker Beach, aka “Baker’s,” is a secluded cove beach just south of Trinidad in Humboldt County. It’s mostly a locals beach and because of the secluded location it is frequented by […]

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  • College Cove Trinidad Bryce June2015 (10)

    College Cove

    College Cove Beach is in the north cove of Trinidad State Beach in the small town of Trinidad. College Cove has a more secluded feel than the main state beach near […]

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