About Monastery Beach in Carmel, California
Monastery Beach gets its name from the Carmelite Monastery Mission across Highway 1 from the beach. The monastery is currently home of the Nuns of Carmel.
This beautiful sandy beach is popular on sunny days, but it is not a swimming beach. Due to the cove’s shape there is a severe undertow and rip current can suck swimmers out to certain death. The nickname of the beach is “Mortuary Beach” and it has been called the most dangerous beach in California.
Another name for the beach is San Jose Creek Beach for the creek that runs behind the beach before entering the cove at the north end. The creek flows down through a stunning canyon behind the beach in a large property called Point Lobos Ranch. The ranch land is a new state park property which hopefully will be open to the public in the near future.
Experienced scuba divers frequently dive at Monastery Beach and at nearby Point Lobos State Natural Reserve.
For parking at Monastery Beach look for spots along the highway near the Monastery entrance at 27951 California 1, Carmel-by-the-Sea, CA.
My wife has taken me here. She grew up in Monterey fifth generation. We parked, sat near the car. I asked her why she wouldn’t get closer she said at fourteen she went in once it was a calm day. It’s an instant drop once you start to wade in she said she had to almost crawl her way back up to get on the shore. She’s a strong swimmer, I am not. We both agreed it’s one of the most stunning views on a beach but respect it and stayed by the car. We’re both in N. NV, but I do love visiting Monterey and Carmel. We stick to Del Monte Beach to get in the water.