Why La Jolla is the Best Beach Town in San Diego
Some call it paradise.
We call it home.
Welcome to La Jolla, California.
People often ask me, “What do you do?”
I answer, “I'm a tour guide at Everyday California.”
Which leads them to ask, “What it’s like?”
It’s like this:
Kayaking in the La Jolla Ecological Preserve is amazing. Moving boats in and out of the water with fellow tour guides builds muscle and establishes camaraderie. Providing a safe, fun and unforgettable experience in the ocean for some folks who’ve never even seen the Pacific is motivating. These things make us glad to be doing what we're doing.
In California, our glorious land of endless adventures, a small, special town sits tucked away along the coast hidden from the stream of cars commuting across the 5 freeway. This is La Jolla, a little beachside community home to a few thousand residents and beloved by locals and tourists from all over the world.
We (the locals) know La Jolla as “the Jewel,” and the story goes that Spanish colonials in the 19th century referred to our lovely slice of land as la joya, or “jewel” in Spanish. This is similar in pronunciation to La Jolla (full disclosure, not a real Spanish word), so it’s entirely possible that this is the origin and somewhere along the line the spelling got a bit twisted.
We (still the locals) aren’t too bothered about the origin of our Jewel’s name for the most part. We accept that a jewel is an appropriate comparison, especially on those perfect sunny afternoons when the sun starts to sink into the ocean and we’re sitting on the sand eating massive California burritos.
We (Everyday California, and we’re locals) are stoked that this San Diegan treasure is our home. Since 2011, our brand has been representing the California lifestyle from La Jolla Shores, ever since we were little more than a group of guys with a few kayaks and an old pickup truck operating out of a parking garage.
Since then, we’ve come a long way, and La Jolla’s been the perfect platform for us to build from. Here’s why:
It’s full of life.
La Jolla might appear to be just another tired beach town, but don’t sleep on it. Like other destinations within San Diego, it has a surprisingly lively atmosphere - and humans aren’t the only life of the party. Along the beaches of La Jolla are unique pockets of marine life, such as sea turtles, cormorants, sea lions, garibaldi, grey whales, each adding their unique contribution to La Jolla’s orchestral buzz.
Within this salty symphony, a few places stand out. Children’s pool, a small beach partially protected by a man-made seawall originally intended to be a swimming area for families, has become a hub for harbor seals. A little further North are the famous La Jolla Sea Caves, a section of limestone cliffs that have eroded over millions of years into seven individual caves, one of which is large enough to kayak inside! This cave system is one of the preferred spots for the Garibaldi - our brightly decorated state fish - to chill. These caves sit in the La Jolla Ecological Reserve, a “ 6000-acre underwater marine park,” arguably the best snorkeling spot in San Diego.
Options, options, options.
Each with views and beaches galore. Starting in the North - Torrey Pines, best known for its famous golf course which hosted the US Open in 2008, boasts some breathtaking views of La Jolla, and has several hikes if you prefer to sweat for your vistas (or you can simply hop in the car and see this).
Just south is our backyard, La Jolla Shores, complete with wide, white-sand beaches, a playground for the kids, and the start/finish line for what we consider to be the best place to kayak in Southern California. There’s also a few great spots for a bite once you’ve tired yourself out.
If you’re looking to shop, try downtown La Jolla, known amongst San Diegans as the Village. This collection of stores and restaurants offers hundreds of special shopping experiences, from a chic selection of boutiques to a nearly endless array of brunch options. For something slightly less posh, grab a cup of coffee in the relaxed vibe of Birdrock or hang out with the locals at Marine Street.
Bottomline, it’s gorgeous.
I could ramble on endlessly - La Jolla is home sweet home, after all. In short, I’ll simply add that our little beach town is truly a jewel, and the only way to know just how bright it shines is to come see it for yourself.
Looking for something awesome to do in La Jolla?
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