• The tidepools of Cabrillo National Monument


    National Monument California

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  • Visitor Center Scheduled to be Closed Until August 8

    The Visitor Center is undergoing a Seismic Retrofit. Visitors will still be able to access the Auditorium, Ballast View and the East Patio. These dates are subject to change. Please call 619 557-5450 for updated information

Tidepooling Tips

Because of their protected status, some of the best tidepools in California can be found right here at Cabrillo National Monument. Follow these tips for a more enjoyable visit:

  • For optimum viewing, a negative low tide is a must.The very best time for tidepooling is during the winter months, when those good negative low tides occur during daylight hours when the park is open.In the summer months, the negative low tides generally occur in the middle of the night. Even though there are daily low tides during the summer, many times they still are too high to really see anything - there's just too much water in the tidepools to adequately access them. Bonus: if you visit during the winter, we always try to have a Park Ranger or Volunteers in the tidepools to answer questions and to help you spot tidepool critters (and we're always looking for Volunteers to help out!).
  • Please note that a vehicle is required to get to the lower area of the park where the tidepools are located; once parked, it's a short walk and scramble down into the tidepools.
  • Shoes with good gripping soles are best, as rocky areas become slippery with water and algae.
  • Please keep small children close - a child's enthusiasm and excitement over being in this natural wonderland can quickly translate into a slip or tumble.

Feel free to give us a call at (619) 557-5450, extension 0 - we'll be glad to let you know when the best low tide is so you can plan a visit to this unique and special area!

Did You Know?

Old Point Loma Lighthouse

Did you know that the Old Point Loma Lighthouse at Cabrillo National Monument was one of the first lighthouses on the West Coast?