Tide Pools

We love our tide pools, the delicate, rocky world between high and low tide. You'll find hundreds of species in Laguna Beach's tide pools, including sea anemones, urchins, mussels, shore crabs, and (if you're lucky) octopuses. This guide will help you identify what you see.

But be careful! Well-meaning visitors can damage tide pools. We've got to protect these ocean habitats for the sake of the animals that live there. Plus, it's the law in Laguna Beach (Municipal Code 18.29.030) and California. So, when you visit Laguna's tide pools, please remember these simple rules:

Rules for visiting tide pools

Do not remove anything. All tide pools inside of the city limits are within a State Marine Conservation Area. Whether dead or alive, all fish, invertebrates, plants, rocks, shells, and sand must remain in the tide pools and along the beaches. 

Do not touch the animals (like anemones and crabs), even gently with just a finger. With hundreds of thousands of tourists visiting our tide pools each year, little touches bring big consequences for these fragile ecosystems. 

Be careful of where you step while on the rocks. Tide pools can take many years to recover if damaged.

Wear shoes. Tide pool rocks can be sharp. Also, if a wave splashes up and surprises you, you'll be have more solid footing in rubber-soled shoes.

Beaches for Tide Pooling in Laguna

Many of Laguna's beaches have access to tide pools at low tide. If the surf is rough, or if the lifeguards close the rocks, please come back to tide pool another time. Some beaches will have volunteer Tidewater Docents during low tides on busy weekends and holidays to curious kids (and their parents) learn about tide pools.

Try Bird Rock (accessible from Main Beach), Crescent Bay, Moss Point, Rockpile Beach, Shaw's Cove, and Treasure Island.