LOOKING FOR THE WARMEST BEACHES IN CALIFORNIA FOR YOUR NEXT VACATION?
California is known for its sun and surf, but not all of California’s beaches are great for getting that much-needed warmth that you want and need!
If you picture yourself sitting on the beach relaxing in the warm California sun or taking a dive in the beautiful waters of the Pacific, then keep reading to find out what the warmest beaches in California are.
11 Warmest Beaches in California
The warmest months of the year for beaches in California are July, August, and September. August and September are the warmest months of the year, and December is the coldest.
As you might have guessed, most of the warmest beaches in California are located in Southern California.
Southern California, also known as SoCal, is known for its sunny and amazing year-round weather. People flock here from all over the country for their warm, dry summers and fairly mild winters.
However, even though Southern California has the majority of warmest beaches, there are a few warm beaches in Northern and Central California that must be mentioned too.
From the northern coast of California to the southern coast of California, here are the warmest beaches in California.
1. Drakes Beach
If you’re looking for one of the warmest beaches in California that is located in the north part of the state, Drakes Beach is an excellent one.
This wide stretch of beach is part of the Point Reyes National Seashore and is located about 1 hour and 45 minutes northwest of San Francisco.
This beach is marked by dramatic, picturesque sandstone cliffs. And these sandstone cliffs, along with Point Reyes, are exactly what shelters Drakes Beach from the not-so-great weather conditions of Northern California.
Families especially love Drakes Beach because the waves are much calmer here than the surrounding area, making it much safer to swim and wade in the water.
☀️ Average Summer Temperature: High of 80°F; Low of 55°F
❄️ Average Winter Temperature: High of 60°F ; Low of 46°F
2. Stinson Beach
Stinson Beach is another excellent choice for a warm beach in Northern California.
This beach is located within the Golden Gate National Recreational Area and is about an hour north of San Francisco.
Even though this beach is in Northern California, it can get fairly warm in the summer due to its south-facing shoreline.
Stinson Beach is known for its fine white sand and interesting rock formations. It’s a beautiful beach to enjoy swimming, relaxing, and playing in the sand.
Watersports such as surfing, windsurfing, and boogie boarding are also very popular here.
☀️ Average Summer Temperature: High of 77°F; Low of 54°F
❄️ Average Winter Temperature: High of 56°F; Low of 43°F
3. Santa Barbara Beach
Santa Barbara is a stunning coastal city located about 90 miles northwest of Los Angeles. It has gorgeous Mediterranean-style buildings with white stucco and red-tile roofs.
This central California coastal city has miles and miles of wide-open beaches perfect for relaxing, swimming, and playing. And best of all, Santa Barbara has pretty much perfect year-round weather.
But besides miles and miles of beautiful beaches and perfect weather, Santa Barbara has a lot of extras to offer visitors, including art galleries, museums, and great shopping.
☀️ Average Summer Temperature: High of 77°F ; Low of 60°F
❄️ Average Winter Temperature: High of 67°F; Low of 47°F
4. Santa Monica Beach
Santa Monica Beach is one of the most well-known beaches in the entire world.
It’s world-famous for the iconic Santa Monica Pier that has been filmed in countless tv shows and movies.
This Los Angeles area beach is great for sunbathing, swimming, and people-watching. There are also plenty of restaurants and shops within walking distance of this beautiful beach.
One of the best ways to experience Santa Monica is on a bike. Starting at the Santa Monica Pier, take the 26-Mile Bike Path and enjoy the stunning coastal views of the beaches and Pacific Ocean.
☀️ Average Summer Temperature: High of 71°F; Low of 63°F
❄️ Average Winter Temperature: High of 64°F; Low of 51°F
5. Long Beach
Long Beach, located in south Los Angeles County is not only one of the warmest beaches in California but also one of the hottest beaches in California!
Just like Santa Monica, Long Beach has also been featured in many tv shows and movies because of its short distance from Hollywood, where many production studios are located.
While in Long Beach, you can enjoy swimming, jet skiing, or kayaking.
Long Beach also has a terrific 4.5-mile fully paved bike path that runs along the Pacific Ocean, great for walking, jogging, biking, or skating.
☀️ Average Summer Temperature: High of 84°F; Low of 63°F
❄️ Average Winter Temperature: High of 68°F; Low of 48°F
6. Huntington Beach
If you’re looking for a warm beach in California that is also close to Disneyland, Huntington Beach is the beach for you.
Located just 15 miles and about a 30-minute drive from your Disneyland hotel, Huntington Beach spans 8.5 miles of the beautiful coastline in Orange County.
This beautiful coastline has wide, open sandy beaches great for playing volleyball or enjoying a bonfire.
A great way to view the coastline is to get out on a bike and take the scenic bike path alongside the beach.
Last but not least, Huntington Beach is an excellent place to surf. In fact, it is known as Surf City USA. So, if you’re looking for a warm beach destination in California with great surfing, Huntington Beach is an excellent option. And if you don’t have a surfboard, no worries, you can easily rent one here.
☀️ Average Summer Temperature: High of 73°F; Low of 64°F
❄️ Average Winter Temperature: High of 64°F; Low of 49°F
7. Laguna Beach
Laguna Beach is another amazing beach destination in Orange County, California.
Not only is Laguna Beach one of the warmest beaches in California, it is also one of the most beautiful!
Heisler Park, an oceanfront park, is a must when visiting Laguna Beach. It stretches along the bluffs of Laguna Beach and includes breathtaking walking trails, gardens, picnic tables and tide pools.
This stunning coastal city is also a great place for art lovers because there are many art galleries here to browse and enjoy.
While in Laguna Beach you must also go hiking in the hills of the city. The views of the Pacific Ocean from high atop the city are incredible!
☀️ Average Summer Temperature: High of 80°F; Low of 60°F
❄️ Average Winter Temperature: High of 68°F ; Low of 44°F
8. San Clemente
San Clemente, located at the southernmost point of Orange County, is another excellent warm beach destination in California.
The architecture in San Clemente is gorgeous. It has a Spanish Colonial Revival architecture style, and its slogan is “Spanish Village by the Sea.”
San Clemente has a lot to offer its beachgoers. While on San Clemente’s gorgeous beaches enjoy your time sunbathing, flying a kite, paddle boarding or surfing.
Speaking of surfing, surfing is very popular in San Clemente! They even have a year-round surf school.
While in San Clemente, you must walk the scenic San Clemente Beach Trail. This trail follows alongside the beaches and stunning coastline.
☀️ Average Summer Temperature: High of 79°F; Low of 59°F
❄️ Average Winter Temperature: High of 67°F; Low of 43°F
9. La Jolla
La Jolla, a neighborhood in San Diego, has some of the best warmest beaches in California.
This San Diego beach town is popular for its gorgeous, rugged coastline and sweeping ocean views.
La Jolla also has really cool sea caves and tide pools to explore.
If you’re looking for an excellent place to swim, snorkel or scuba dive, La Jolla Cove is the perfect spot!
A unique thing about La Jolla is the natural habitat of sea lions and seals that live there. It’s fun to just sit on a rock and watch these amazing marine creatures.
☀️ Average Summer Temperature: High of 72°F; Low of 65°F
❄️ Average Winter Temperature: High of 63°F; Low of 48°F
10. Mission Beach
Mission Beach is a laid-back beach in San Diego, perfect for catching some of that warm California sun.
This beautiful San Diego beach has wide, sandy beaches perfect for sunbathing, playing water sports, volleyball, and surfing.
Mission Beach Boardwalk is a must while here. This is a 2-mile wide paved concrete path alongside the beach with many vendors, shops, and restaurants. It’s great for walkers, joggers, cyclists, and skaters.
Also, at Mission Beach is Belmont Park, a small oceanfront amusement park with a rollercoaster from the 1920s.
☀️ Average Summer Temperature: High of 72°F; Low of 65°F
❄️ Average Winter Temperature: High of 63°F; Low of 48°F
11. Coronado Beach
Coronado Beach is a popular beach located just across the bridge from Downtown San Diego.
Compared to Mission Beach, Coronado Beach has a more peaceful atmosphere. Families and couples love Coronado Beach for its long shoreline and calmer waves.
The iconic Hotel Del Coronado is also located here and would make the perfect spot to stay while enjoying your time at Coronado Beach. Even if you don’t stay at Hotel Del Coronado, it’s a must-visit on your trip to San Diego.
☀️ Average Summer Temperature: High of 76°F; Low of 66°F
❄️ Average Winter Temperature: High of 66°F; Low of 50°F
FAQs: Warmest California Beaches
Here are your answers to some of your most frequently asked questions about the warmest California beaches.
What are the warmest beaches in SOUTHERN California?
For the most part, the further south you go along the coast of California, the warmer the weather gets. However, this is not always true for California’s beaches.
Some beaches further north are warmer than beaches further south because of the position of the beach. For example, beaches with south-facing shores will be the warmest.
The following are some of the warmest beaches in Southern California:
- Long Beach
- Laguna Beach
- San Clemente
What are the warmest beaches in NORTHERN California?
Northern California gets its warmest weather during the month of September, so September will be your best chance at the warmest beach days.
The following are some of the warmest beaches in Northern California:
- Drakes Beach
- Stinson Beach
What are the warmest beaches in San Diego?
The warmest beaches in San Diego have average summer highs in the mid-70s.
If you’re looking for the warmest beaches in San Diego, make sure to go to one of the following amazing beaches:
- La Jolla
- Coronado Beach
- Mission Beach
- Imperial Beach
Is California warm in December?
For the most part California has a milder December than a lot of the United States.
However, December is California’s coldest month, and it can definitely get quite chilly, even in Southern California.
San Francisco in northern California has an average high of 58°F in December and an average low of 46°F in December.
In Southern California, San Diego has an average high of 66°F and an average low of 49°F in December.
The Wrap-Up: Warmest Beaches in California
From the northern coast of California to the southern coast of California, ‘The Golden State’ has many great warm beaches to enjoy!
For the warmest weather, make sure to visit during the summer months of July, August and September.
I hope you have found my guide, 11 Warmest Beaches in California: Northern & Southern, helpful! Have a great time and have lots of fun in the sun!