The beaches in California are famed for their remarkable beauty across the country. However, with a state that has a coastline of over 840 miles where do you find the best beaches when visiting California.

Many of the sandy havens lie along the epic Pacific Coastal Highway in Southern California.

I’ve spent a lot of time on beaches in California. A couple of my favorite spots to relax on the beach are Long Beach and Oxnard (where I lived for over a year). You have a lot of options when traveling to California. Do you want to explore or the things to do in Santa Rosa? Or just hang out on the beach. Try you hand at surfing? Or head into the mountians?

In this post let’s compare some of the beaches in this area, and which of these spots is better for you when visiting California.

Long Beach

Long Beach is a beautiful area of California and only a short drive to Los Angles. There are lots of hotels and things to do in the area. Here are some of the best beaches in the area.

Alamitos Beach

Alamitos Beach is a soft sandy beach on the west side of the bay. This beach is so popular that they close down Bay Shore Ave during summertime. This gives visitors a free place for walking, socializing, and biking. Alamitos Beach is a popular area for younger crowds and skaters. Overall the beach is striking and a worth a visit when in the Long Beach area.

Belmont Shore Beach

This expansive beach located by the Belmont Pier has a lot of entertainment those of you who love being active. There is a small area to let your dog’s off the leash, paved bike paths, and sand volleyball courts. Like every other beach in California it is striking spot and also a good beach to relax.

Long Beach City Beach

We cannot talk about beaches in Long Beach without talking about the main beach in the area. Known by the locals as Junipero Beach it is sheltered by the breakwaters that reduce the wave’s sizes making it a nice play to go swimming, weather permitting.

This beach was once a hotspot for surfers, but since the construction of the breakwaters, it has almost become impossible to surf.

Close to the beach is Belmont Park, which is worth checking out. There are also walking paths if you want to take a quite stroll all the way to Belmont Pier.

Colorado Lagoon Park

The gorgeous Colorado Lagoon Park is different from the other beaches on this list. It is a little inland lake surrounded by beautiful parks and green golf courses.  While you are not allowed to swim in the lake there are two lovely beaches, a stunning lagoon, and nice parks to visit.

Best Beaches in Oxnard

Oxnard is a beautiful part of California and a lot less tourist than Long Beach. You can get a hotel within walking distance from the beach for a fraction of the price. Oxnard is only an hour drive from sunny Santa Barbra.

Silver Strand

I love Sliver Strand Beach! It is not only my favorite beach in Oxnard but one of my favorite beaches in California. This long sandy beach is a little bit out of the way than the other beaches in Oxnard.

However, that means it is not nearly as crowded as some of the other beaches in both Oxnard and Long Beach. It is also one of the best surfing beaches in So Cal.  If you are lucky on a clear day, you can catch glimpses of pods of dolphins or seals swimming not far off the coast.

Hollywood Beach

Hollywood Beach was a  favorite to famous stars like Clark Gable. It has also been used in some films. Nowadays, Hollywood Beach is a famous among locals who visit for sunbathing, volleyball, and swimming. During the summer, there are lifeguards, and during certain hours dogs allowed on the beach. This makes Hollywood Beach family friendly.

Oxnard Beach

The most famous beach in the area thousands of visitors flock to Oxnard Beach to relax, swim, picnic, BBQ, or drinking a little wine from wonderful Santa Rosa. The beach is lovely, but the major draw of Oxnard beach is all the fun things. The beach is big enough for people to spread out which makes it feel less crowded.

There are a few beaches in the area, and you can catch glimpses of the stunning Channel Islands off the shore.

Beaches: Long Beach VS Oxnard

So what area is better for beaches, Long Beach or Oxnard? Honestly, you can’t go wrong with either. I tend to lean towards Oxnard because they are less crowded and prettier. Although, I might be a little bias since Oxnard was my home for more than a year. There are also many surfer beaches in Oxnard and in Venture, which is just a few minutes north of the city..

Whatever area you choose you will make a blast and be overwhelmed by the sheer beauty of these beaches. In my opinion, these two spots have some of the best beaches in the country, and a visit to either place is a good choice.

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