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Doheny State Beach

Doheny State Beach is a popular surf spot, campsite, picnic area, and a perfect place to catch a wave and some rays of sunshine in Orange County.
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Aerial view of Visitor Center/Aquarium at Doheny.
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Photo Credit: Visit Dana Point
Fishing off the beach at Doheny State Beach
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Photo Credit: Visit Dana Point
Waves crashing on Doheny State Beach
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Photo Credit: Visit Dana Point
Picnic area at Doheny State Beach
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Photo Credit: Visit Dana Point

Doheny State Beach in Dana Point is a popular surf spot, campsite, picnic area, and a perfect place to spend the day catching a wave or a ray of sunshine. This Orange County beach is unique because it’s actually two beaches separated by the San Juan Creek, both of which offer their own activities and day-use areas.

The two beaches are called North Beach and South Beach, and are both easily accessible once visitors are on-site. There’s also a visitor center complete with educational interpretive exhibits, an aquarium, and indoor tide pools for those who want to learn more about the natural habitat of the destination they’re exploring.

The north section of the beach is located above San Juan Creek, and features a grassy park area with picnic facilities, sand volleyball courts, and soft sand to sit, relax, and enjoy a book. At low tide visitors can explore the tide pools nearby to see a diverse collection of marine life.

The south section of Doheny State Beach is below San Juan Creek. It’s frequently named “Orange County’s Best Camping Site,” because there are more than 100 campsites, 33 of which are beachfront – as well as fire pits, picnic tables, and hot showers. The picnic areas and campgrounds are dog-friendly as long as the dogs are kept on-leash – but furry friends are not permitted on the sand.

The California State Parks system offers the following guidelines for those considering a trip to a California State Park or open space:

  • Stay Local: Stay close to home. Do not travel if you are sick or if someone in your household has had COVID-19 in the last two weeks.
  • Plan Ahead: Prior to leaving home, check the webpage of the your local outdoor destination to find out if it is open, if parking is available, if there are camping opportunities and what new visitor guidelines are in effect.
  • Stay Safer at 6 Feet: No matter the recreational activity, maintain a physical distance of 6 feet or more. Group gatherings and parties are not allowed. Visitors are being asked to leave if there are too many people to allow for the required physical distance.
  • Stay Covered: The state requires you to wear a face covering when you cannot maintain physical distancing of six feet or more. For details, please visit
  • Stay Clean: Be prepared. Bring soap/sanitizer and pack out all trash. Restrooms will be temporarily closed in order to keep up with cleaning schedules
Nearest Station
San Juan Capistrano
25300 Dana Point Harbor Drive
Dana Point, CA 92629
(949) 496-6171
General directions
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Take Metrolink to San Juan Capistrano Station

Take Line 91 bus to Pacific Coast-Dana Point Harbor

Walk ten minutes southwest toward Doheny State Beach

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