Laws & Policies
To Protect Visitors and Resources: Policies and Regulations
In accordance with regulations and the delegated authority provided in Title 36, Code of Federal Regulations (36 CFR), Chapter 1, Parts 1-7, authorized by Title 16 United States Code, Section 3, the following regulatory provisions are established for the proper management, protection, government, and public use of those portions of Cabrillo National Monument under the jurisdiction of the National Park Service. Unless otherwise stated, these regulatory provisions apply in addition to the requirements contained in 36 CFR, Chapter 1, Parts 1-7.
I. 36 CFR 1.5 – Visiting Hours, Public Use Limits, Closures, and Area Designations for Specific Use or Activities
(a)(1) The following visiting hours and
public use limits are established for all or for
the listed portions of the park, and the
following closures are established for all or
a portion of the park to all public use or to a
certain use or activity:
The following are the established hours for
areas within Cabrillo National Monument:
Visitor Center Building Complex
9:00 AM to 5:00 PM
Old Point Loma Lighthouse
9:00 AM to 5:00 PM
9:00 AM to 5:00 PM
The following areas are closed in the evenings
at the times listed below until Catalina Post 2
Gate is closed. The areas are accessible by
the public at all other times when Catalina
Post 2 Gate is open.
Closed at 4:00 PM
Tidepool Area (Cabrillo Road)
Closed at 4:30 PM
Cabrillo National Monument
Closed at 5:00 PM
Special note: The Superintendent may extend hours during the summer months per memorandum.
Public Use Limits
Tidepool Group Use: The use of the tidepools by groups is not to exceed 120 persons on weekdays and 80 persons per day on weekends and holidays.
Parking around the Old Point Loma Lighthouse is limited only to visitors that have obtained a parking pass from the park due to handicap, age, or other physical reasons that would inhibit them from otherwise walking to the lighthouse. Permit holders must park in the designated parking spaces south of the lighthouse.
All unpaved areas are closed to the public in order to protect the coastal sage scrub environment and to provide visitor safety with the following exceptions:
Tidepool closure: To protect the tidepool flora and fauna from the negative impacts of visitor use and allow it to recover, the Superintendent has designated the southernmost section as critical habitat and closed it to public entry. The closed area extends west 300 yards from the mean low tide and will be clearly posted with Area Closed signs and barricades during low tides. Information will be posted at the tidepool bulletin board informing visitors that a zone closure is in effect.
Sea Cave area closure: The area which lies west of the fence which extends along the west edge of the Sea Cove parking area (parking area #3), north to the Wastewater Treatment Facility property, and south to the Coast View parking area (parking area #2) is closed to the public. Included in this area is a sea cave. This closure extends to any manner of entry into the cave, whether through the sea level entrances or through the collapsed ceiling.
Military structures closure: The interior portions of all historic U.S. Army structures, including searchlight shelters, the WWII power generating station, and the base end and battery commander stations, are closed to the public unless they are specifically opened by the park staff for interpretive purposes.
The following restrictions and/or conditions are in effect for the specific uses or activities noted:
Passenger-carrying buses are subject to the following conditions/restrictions on all park roads within Cabrillo National Monument:
Models and remotes:
II. 36 CFR 1.6 – Activities that Require a Permit
(f) The following is a compilation of those activities for which a permit from the Superintendent is required:
- Tidepool Group Permit
- Lighthouse parking
- (a)(2) Operating a chainsaw in a
- (a)(3) Operation of any type of
portable motor or engine, or
device powered by a portable motor
or engine in non-developed areas
- (a)(4) Operation of a public address
system in connection with a public
gathering or special event for which a
permit has been issued pursuant to
2.50 or 2.51
- (c)(1) Removal of a downed aircraft
- (b) Use or possess fireworks
- (b) Still photography of vehicles, or
other articles of commerce or models
for the purpose of commercial
III. General Regulations
36 CFR 2.1 – Preservation of Natural, Cultural, and Archaeological Resources
(a)(5) The following conditions are in effect for walking, climbing, entering, ascending, or traversing the listed archaeological or cultural resources, monuments, or statues:
(b) Hiking or pedestrian traffic is restricted to the trail tread or walkway on the following trails/walkways:
36 CFR 2.15 – Pets
(a)(1) The following structures and/or areas are closed to the possession of pets:
36 CFR 2.21 – Smoking
(a) The following portions of the park, or all or portions of buildings, structures, or facilities are closed to smoking:
36 CFR 2.23 – Recreation Fees
(b) Recreation fees, in accordance with 36 CFR part 71, are established for the following entrance fee areas, and/or for the use of the following specialized sites, facilities, equipment, or services, or for participation in the following group activity, recreation events, or specialized recreation uses:
Entrance Fee Areas:
- Vehicle: $5.00
- Individual: $3.00
- Annual Cabrillo Park Pass: $15.00
- Interagency Pass: $80.00
- Interagency Senior Pass: $10.00
- Interagency Access Pass: Free
(c) The collection of recreation fees will be suspended during the following period(s):
36 CFR 3.21 – Swimming and Bathing
(a)(1) The following areas are closed to swimming and bathing:
36 CFR 4.11 – Vehicle Load, Weight, and Size Limits
(a) The following load, weight, and size limits, which are more restrictive than State law, apply to the roads indicated under the terms and conditions, and/or under permit as noted:
36 CFR 4.21 – Speed Limits
(b) The following speed limits are established for the routes/roads indicated:
Did You Know?
Did you know that assistant lighthouse keeper Maria Israel of the Old Point Loma Lighthouse made and sold shell picture frames? Today, you can see one of the frames made by Maria still hanging in the lighthouse at Cabrillo National Monument.