To see the local surfers and boogey-boarders carve up the curl in a truly spectacular setting, head to Windansea Beach , tucked away in a along a quiet stretch of coast in a La Jolla neighborhood. Unless you’re a real expert, this spot is best left alone—leave the gnarly break to the pros. But you’ll love the setting, with jutting windswept sandstone formations creating lots of private coves where you can spread out a beach blanket and enjoy the show. Kids can clamber on the sandstone, and, if the tide is low, there’s a nice stretch of sand for all those plastic pails and shovels you brought down to the beach.
Want to give the sport a try? Head to the friendlier waves and relaxed family vibe of nearby La Jolla Shores , with surfboard rentals including soft and forgiving beginner boards for riding the beach’s gentle break. You can rent boogie boards too, as well as kayaks, wetsuits, and fins, and lessons are available. Bonus: Unlike no-frills Windansea, La Jolla Shores has lifeguards, bathrooms, and showers.