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About Bonny Doon Beach in Santa Cruz, California

Boony Doon Beach is a stunning beach backed by dunes and surrounded by high cliff walls. A stream named Liddell Creek comes out of a man-made tunnel in the rock wall at the back of the beach and flows around the south end to the ocean. To access the beach, you might have to wade across the creek or cross on a log to reach the beach.

The beach is located at the intersection of the Highway 1 and Bonny Doon Road north of Santa Cruz and near the town of Davenport. There is a long paved parking lot along Highway 1 at this spot (parking hours are from 8am to sunset). Walk across the railroad tracks and down a sandy slope to the beach. Don’t leave valuables visible in cars at any time as break-ins are common unfortunately.

If you are interested in hiking, there are old double-track farm trails on the bluffs north and south of the beach. The northern trail leads to Shark Fin Cove and the southern one leads to views of Panther Beach and Hole in the Wall.

Bonny Doon has been considered a clothing-optional beach for years. Now that the state of California owns the property it seems that the clothing-free area is at the more secluded north end (beyond the big flat topped rock). Note that citations can be issued by park rangers if they visit the beach.

This beach might soon be known as Bonny Doon State Beach, a future California State Park in the Coast Dairies Ranch property acquisition. State park rules apply to this beach so these are all prohibited: dogs, glass containers, fires, alcohol, camping, horses, and vehicles on the beach.

Note that swimming here can be dangerous due to rip currents that form in the cove.

Cabrillo Hwy and Bonny Doon Rd
Santa Cruz, CA 95060
Park Name
Coast Dairies State Park, Bonny Doon State Beach, Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary.
State Parks
Pet Details
No dogs allowed on the beach
Free parking
Sunbathing, Photography
Dunes, Trails, Stream, Viewpoints, No Facilities
Map of Bonny Doon Beach
Bonny Doon, US
11:33 pm, April 23, 2024
temperature icon 55°F
L: 53° H: 56°
Feels like 53.96 °F overcast clouds
Wind gusts: 3 m/s
UV Index: 0
Precipitation: 0.01 inch
Visibility: 10 km
Sunrise: 6:23 am
Sunset: 7:50 pm
Humidity 74 %
Pressure1018 mb
Wind 3 m/s

Nearby Beaches

Panther Beach

0.7 miles away

Panther Beach is a popular sandy beach north of Santa Cruz near the hamlet of Davenport. It’s part of...

View beach

Nearby Attractions

Nearby Lodging


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