San Diego is known for its long sandy beaches. The La Jolla district is one of the city’s exceptions as it has a rugged irregular shoreline dotted with small coves and rocky points. Many of the small beaches along this shoreline have tide pools that are exposed at lower tides.
Most of the coastal access points between Tourmaline Surf Park and La Jolla Shores have some tidepooling spots, but the best known and most photographed area is between Whispering Sands Beach and Hospital Beach. Another massive tide pooling spot can be found by walking south from La Jolla Shores toward La Jolla Caves.
Kids will truly enjoy all the sea life discoveries at these places. Some are easier to access than others so read our beach pages to see how kid-friendly they are.
Tidepooling at La Jolla Cove
Check tide charts if you plan to find tide pools as they are all best at low tides. Also, be careful where you step when you are exploring them. Some of these little critters blend into the rocks and are quite hard to see. Other creatures are vibrant colors and beg for photographs.
See the map above and the list below of the best tide pools in La Jolla.
La Jolla tide pools at sunset