There are countless ways to explore San Simeon’s Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. Here are five ways to get you started on your coastal adventure.

Kayaking in San Simeon Bay

Kayak in San Simeon Bay

Grab a kayak and paddle around San Simeon’s coast and get up close and personal with all types of local marine life. No matter the experience level, the Central Coast’s waters let you experience the region’s natural beauty from the seat of your own kayak.

Stroll the Tide Pools

At low tides, climb the rocky reefs of San Simeon Beach or Pico Creek Beach and observe the saltwater habitats. Be on the lookout for mussels, crabs, anemones, snails, and even colorful starfish during the early mornings and afternoons. Exploring the tide pools are a great family activity.

San Simeon Tide Pools
Whale Watching Tour in San Simeon

Whale Watching on Land

San Simeon is home to 34 species of marine mammals that migrate along the coast – whales included. The designated wildlife viewing sites give a clear range to search for the heart-shaped blows of gray whales, tall dorsal fins of orcas, or feeding humpback and blue whales.

Become a Beachcomber

Sink your feet into some of San Simeon’s sandy beaches for a scenic walk or a fun day in the sun. The locals love San Simeon’s beaches for the scenery, sea glass collection and picnics along the bluffs. Popular beaches include W.R. Hearst Memorial State Beach, Moonstone Beach, Pico Creek, Arroyo Laguna, Ragged Point Beach, Hearst San Simeon State Beach and Leffingwell Point.

Walk the Beaches in San Simeon
Coastal Discovery Center at San Simeon Bay

Hike The Bluffs

From rolling hills to rocky bluffs, San Simeon’s trails offer a variety of terrain to see the coastal views. Ranging from easy to difficult, there’s a trail for every hiker. Some local favorite trials include Pacific Valley Bluff Trail, Cliffside Trail, Boucher Trail at Piedras Blancas, Junge Ranch Trail, San Carpoforo Creek Trailhead and San Simeon Point Trail. For more information of San Simeon’s great hikes, read more.