Children's Pool Beach
While Children’s Pool Beach is technically open to the public, it’s rare to see any humans in the water. Instead, local populations of harbor seals and sea lions congregate on the small strip of sand, often with pups in tow. Their presence has turned the beach into a popular tourist attraction, with camera-toting visitors arriving to watch the seals from street level or atop the curved seawall. Many San Diego sightseeing tours also stop by for a look.
Access to the beach is a topic of fierce local debate. Animal conservationists wish to protect the beach as a marine mammal sanctuary, while others argue it should be preserved for public enjoyment. Tensions over beach usage occasionally result in protests.
Things to Know Before You Go
If you decide to step on the sand, maintain a safe distance from wildlife and don’t attempt to touch the seals.
Bacteria levels in the water may result in unsafe swimming conditions. Observe any posted warning signage.
Go during low tide to see additional marine life inside the beach’s tide pools.
Public restrooms and showers are available near the seawall.
How to Get There
Children’s Pool Beach is located near the intersection of Beach Boulevard and Jenner Street in downtown La Jolla. There’s no public lot, but paid parking is available nearby. Segway and bike tours are a great way to access the beach.
When to Get There
The beach is open daily. It’s best visited during daylight hours for safety reasons and to observe the seals.
One Day in La Jolla
The community surrounding Children’s Pool Beach is one of San Diego’s most exclusive enclaves, known for its gorgeous beaches, Spanish-style mansions, and luxury boutiques. La Jolla is a lovely place to wander around for a day—whether you want to window-shop, sample fresh California cuisine, or kick back at postcard-perfect coastal spaces like Ellen Browning Scripps Park and Cuvier Park.