Coral Street Beach

Location: Ocean View Blvd. and Coral St., Pacific Grove, CA
Parking: Free parking on Ocean View Blvd.
Experience Level: Novice
Depth: 10-40ft
Entry: Sandy beach, many rocks

Coral Street Beach is a great site for invertebrates and colorful seaweeds. The point on the left side of the beach provides decent shelter from most swells, so this site is usually safe to dive. It can get surgy if a swell is present, so keep this in mind. This isn't the best site for fish sightings, but there are plenty of nudibranchs and other invertebrates to see.

The only good place to enter and exit is the left side of the beach. Here there's a small channel you can walk through. It's hard to spot at high tide, but is obvious at low tide. You may also see divers enter somewhere in the middle of the beach, but if you observe the site at low tide, it's obvious why this is a bad idea even at high tide (very shallow, slippery, and rocky).

The area inside the cove is a great snorkeling spot. Just be aware of any fishermen on the point. For scuba dives, swim out past the cove, and follow a break in the kelp on the left side. Here the bottom drops down to about 20 feet, and you'll find a sand channel. Follow this sand channel due north to about 30 feet of depth, and turn right (east). Here the kelp forest is thick, yet shallow enough for light to penetrate.

Be aware that eastern side of the site gets very shallow, and small waves are common. For this reason, I recommend you end your dive by heading west to the sand channel, then heading south to shore. Be careful not to navigate past the point, as this area is exposed and often treacherous.

Links

California Diving News Review
Shorediving.com

Photos from Coral Street Beach

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