Search by beach, city or zipcode

Sometimes it’s hard to find a beach where you can legally take your dog for a walk, or better yet, set them free to roam around with other dogs. We’ve done a lot of digging (pun intended) to find the best beaches for dogs in California. Almost all of these beaches allow dogs to be off leash all day every day. A few have restrictions on the time or the season, so read the fine print (we have dog rules detailed on each beach page). There are many more beaches on CaliforniaBeaches.com that allow dogs if they are on a leash, but those beaches aren’t the best.

As you can imagine, there are dog-friendly beaches in Southern, Central, and Northern California. In the south where beaches get crowded, the dog rules get more strict to avoid conflicts, but there are great off-leash dog beaches there too.

See all of the Southern California dog beaches.

A cute dog tied to a No Dogs Allowed On Beach sign.

Below is our list of the dog-friendly beaches in California in order from south to north.


Beaches on this list

  • Coronado Dog Run Beach

    Dog Run Beach is the North Beach of Coronado Beach in front of Sunset Park. Dogs can be off leash on this beach unlike all the other beaches along the […]

    See details

  • Ocean Beach Dog Beach

    Dog Beach is the northern portion of Ocean Beach City Beach where it extends to the mouth of the San Diego River. Dogs are generally allowed north of the Ocean […]

    See details

  • Del Mar Dog Beach – North Beach

    North Beach in Del Mar is also known as Dog Beach because it’s the only place dogs can be off-leash on Del Mar city beaches. From 29th Street north all […]

    See details

  • Huntington Dog Beach

    Huntington Dog Beach is a dog-friendly strand at the northern end of Huntington Beach City Beach. The zone where dogs are allowed on the beach is located between Seapoint Street […]

    See details

  • Granada Beach and Rosie’s Dog Beach

    Rosie’s Dog Beach is an area of Belmont Shore Beach designated by the city of Long Beach for off-leash dogs. This whole area is one long wide beach so it’s […]

    See details

  • Shoreline Park Beach

    Shoreline Park is a linear grassy park located in the East Mesa neighborhood of Santa Barbara, CA. Below the park is a narrow rock and sand beach that is backed […]

    See details

  • Thousand Steps Beach

    Thousand Steps Beach is a rock and sand beach below homes high on the bluff in the East Mesa area of Santa Barbara. It requires a long hike down a […]

    See details

  • Mesa Lane Beach

    Mesa Lane Beach is a narrow beach below the West Mesa neighborhood of Santa Barbara. At low tides, this beach is wide enough for sunbathing and beach sports, but at […]

    See details

  • Olde Port Beach

    Olde Port Beach is a wide sandy cove alongside Avila Beach Drive just west of downtown Avila Beach, CA. This beach is a little calmer than Avila City Beach and less […]

    See details

  • Fishermans Beach

    Fisherman’s Beach is the last beach you come to along Avila Beach Drive as you drive farther away from the town of Avila Beach. Locals call it Dog Beach because […]

    See details

  • Toro Creek Beach

    Toro Creek Beach fills the gap between the north and south sections of Morro Strand State Beach between Morro Bay and Cayucos, CA. This mile long beach is often called […]

    See details

  • Carmel City Beach

    Carmel City Beach is a long, wide, white sand beach that is hard to beat anywhere on the California Central Coast. It can be packed here on sunny days, but […]

    See details

  • Hooper Beach

    Hooper Beach is the small section of beach west of the fishing pier in Capitola, CA. Hooper’s is known as the dog-friendly beach of Capitola and Aptos even though technically […]

    See details

  • Its Beach

    Its Beach is the name of the south-facing beach below the bluff on the west side of Point Santa Cruz in Santa Cruz, CA. Lighthouse Field State Beach manages the […]

    See details

  • Pelican Point Beach

    Pelican Point Beach is located near the end of Miramontes Point Road in Half Moon Bay, CA. The beach is nearby the Pelican Point RV Park and surrounded by the […]

    See details

  • Miramar Beach

    Miramar Beach parallels Mirada Road in the Miramar neighborhood in Half Moon Bay. The beach and the road are eroding away so during times of high tides there is no […]

    See details

  • Esplanade Beach

    Esplanade Beach is below Esplanade Avenue in Pacifica, CA. This narrow beach is below a steep fast-eroding bluff with few access points. The south access to Esplanade Beach is at […]

    See details

  • Thornton State Beach

    Thornton State Beach is a remote beach below tall bluffs just south of San Francisco. The park is known for the hiking and equestrian trails on the bluff terraces high […]

    See details

  • 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 […]

    See details

  • Crissy Field – East Beach

    East Beach in San Francisco is located at the east end of Crissy Field Park in the old Presidio Area of what is now Golden Gate National Recreation Area. From […]

    See details

  • 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 […]

    See details

  • Rodeo Beach

    Rodeo Beach is a wide pebble beach on the sand spit that separates Rodeo Lagoon from Rodeo Cove on the west side of the Marin Headlands in Golden Gate National […]

    See details

  • Muir Beach

    Muir Beach (the beach) is part of Golden Gate National Recreation Area and located in the small town of Muir Beach, California. Redwood Creek flows down to the ocean here, […]

    See details

  • Bolinas Beach

    Bolinas Beach is a quiet public beach in the small town of Bolinas. It’s often called Brighton Beach because the main access road to the beach is Brighton Avenue. Parking […]

    See details

  • Dillon Beach

    Dillon Beach on Bodega Bay is privately-owned by the Dillon Beach Resort, but for a small fee anyone can enjoy this beautiful beach. The beach is located in the small […]

    See details

  • Fish Rock Beach at Anchor Bay Campground

    Fish Rock Beach is in front of Anchor Bay Campground in the community of Anchor Bay just north of Gualala, California. The privately-owned campground is in the bottom of Fish […]

    See details

  • Seaside Beach

    Seaside Beach is just north of MacKerricher State Park where Seaside Creek sometimes flows through the sand to the ocean. A rock sticks up out of the sand at the […]

    See details

  • Centerville Beach County Park

    Centerville Beach County Park gives access to a long sandy beach that stretches from the parking area north all the way to the mouth of the Eel River. Behind the […]

    See details

  • Crab County Park Beach

    Crab County Park is a small Humboldt County Park with beach access at the mouth of the Eel River. This location is a tidal flat on the inside of the […]

    See details

  • Mike Thompson Wildlife Area, South Spit Humboldt Bay

    Mike Thompson Wildlife Area, South Spit Humboldt Bay is the wordy official name for the long beach on the sandy spit south of the entrance to Humboldt Bay near Eureka. […]

    See details

  • Samoa Dunes Recreation Area

    Samoa Dunes Recreation Area is a sandy off-highway vehicle play area on Samoa Peninsula near Eureka. The recreation area is located on the south end of the North Jetty at […]

    See details

  • Samoa Beach

    Samoa Beach is the long strand of beach on the ocean side of the Samoa Peninsula near Eureka. The small community of Samoa with its historic Samoa Cookhouse Restaurant is […]

    See details

  • Manila Dunes Recreation Area

    Manila Dunes Recreation Area is the section of beach on the Samoa Peninsula that fronts the small community of Manila not far from Eureka and Arcata. Access to the beach is easiest […]

    See details

  • Friends of the Dunes Beach

    Friends of the Dunes is a non-profit organization with a visitor center, hiking trails, and beach access on Samoa Peninsula. The Humboldt Coastal Nature Center at Friends of the Dunes […]

    See details

  • Mad River Beach County Park

    Mad River Beach County Park is located where Mad River approaches the ocean a couple miles south of the actual river mouth. This location provides a great ocean beach access […]

    See details

  • Clam Beach County Park

    Clam Beach is a Humboldt County Park just off Redwood Highway 101 near the city of McKinleyville. The beach is named for the plentiful razor clams that you can dig […]

    See details

  • Moonstone Beach County Park

    Moonstone Beach County Park is at the north side of the Little River mouth near Trinidad. The beach is popular with surfers and also with families that can play safely […]

    See details

  • Luffenholtz Beach County Park

    Luffenholtz Beach is a Humboldt County park just south of the small town of Trinidad. The park has a large scenic overlook on a rock that juts out into the […]

    See details

  • Big Lagoon County Park Beach

    Big Lagoon and the beach are part of three different parks: Big Lagoon County Park, Harry A. Merlo State Recreation Area, and Humboldt Lagoons State Park. The ocean beach is a long […]

    See details

  • Klamath Beach

    Klamath Beach is on a huge sand spit on the south side of the Klamath River mouth in Del Norte County. This driftwood-covered spit protects the entrance to the river […]

    See details