Thousand Steps Beach is one of the largest beaches in south Laguna Beach, CA. It’s a wide sandy beach with volleyball courts, restrooms, and tide pools and even caves to discover. This is a popular beach so it helps that it’s large and the steps scare people off.
There is a large cave at the south end of Thousand Steps Beach that you can enter when the tide is out and the entrance is exposed. You can walk all the way through this cave (which is actually a tunnel) to a tiny rocky cove on the other side. There are enticing rocks to climb on beyond the cave and they lead to another sandy beach, but refrain from going farther. Deaths have occurred in this area as the rocks are slippery and there are holes to fall into.
At the north end of Thousand Steps Beach there is another rock tunnel, but this one leads to an excellent beach that you must see. This beach, known as Totuava Beach, is not accessible at high tide as the water around the rocky point will be too deep and the tunnel will be closed off. When the tide is low it’s easy to walk on sand around the point.
To get to Thousand Steps Beach, head to the intersection of 9th Avenue and Coast Highway and park in a legal spot. Laguna Police love to give out tickets to those who make parking mistakes. The beach access is across from 9th Ave and it leads to a long stairway.
There are enough steps in the stairs that it seems like 1000 steps (especially when returning to the top). The actual number is 223 which we have double-checked.