La Jolla Cove Sea Glass

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One of the best places to find sea glass in Southern California is at La Jolla Cove near San Diego.

I went there with my daughter and two grandchildren on June 15, 2012 an hour before low tide.

La Jolla is just a little north of San Diego, California. It’s a beautiful and popular beach to visit even if you’re not going to collect sea glass.

Lots of Sea Glass Shards in La Jolla

There was plenty of nicely frosted sea glass on the beach in La Jolla.  A lot of the shards were small, but it was still a lot of fun because sea glass was everywhere. Here are some pictures of our day at La Jolla Cove.

The Tide Brought In Lots of Small Shards

Take a close look at the picture below. You can see lots of small clear, green and brown sea glass. I could stay in one spot for ten minutes and collect of lot of sea glass. Many of the pieces were nicely frosted and rounded.

La Jolla Cove Sea Glass


La Jolla Cove Above the Cliffs

Here is a nice shot of La Jolla Cove from above the beach. There are about three stairways leading down to the beach. While we were there, a lifeguard was there too. The beach was fairly crowded, and many children were enjoying themselves climbing on the rocks and checking out the seals.

The day we went was a little foggy, and the temperature was about 65 degrees. In Southern California in June, it tends to be foggy near the coast.

La Jolla Cove


Seals on the Rocks at La Jolla Cove

Below is a lone baby seal who seemed to have gotten separated from its parents. Please do not go near the seals. The parents of this baby seal were probably frightened away by humans. 

Baby Seal on La Jolla Cove



My granddaughter and grandson below at La Jolla Cove. They love helping me collect sea glass.

My Little Sea Glass Helpers


Sea Glass Shards Collected on La Jolla Beach, California

La Jolla Cove Sea Glass

Most pieces of sea glass were small, but most were nicely frosted and rounded.

Other Tips for Collecting Sea Glass at La Jolla

  • Parking, like most popular beaches in California, can be challenging and a little expensive, especially if you’re going during the summer and on weekends.
  • Be sure to check the tide times. It’s best to go at low tide. Typically there are two high and two low tides every day along the Pacific Coast. I use to check tide times.
  • Restrooms at La Jolla are located above the cliffs.
  • Bring drinking water and snacks and of couse sunscreen. Even if it’s foggy, you can still get burnt.
  • Keep in mind that sea glass can be fickle. I’ve been collecting sea glass on California’s coast many times on several different beaches. There are good sea glass days and bad sea glass days. Usually if the tide has brought in little pebbles and shells, I can find sea glass. Some days I won’t find any sea glass even if I found a lot the day before on the same beach.


Other Sea Glass Beaches I’ve Found in Southern California

Another favorite place of mine to find sea glass is in Redondo Beach near my home. I go quite frequently and usually collect at least one handfull of sea glass at low tide. To see get directions to the best spot in Redondo Beach click here.

I’ve also made a number of trips to Summerland Beach in Santa Barbara. I found my first blue piece of sea glass here. To get directions, click here.

If this article was helpful, please comment below and share your experience finding sea glass.



  • Britney

    Hi, I love collecting sea glass, but please don’t encourage sea glass collecting on seal beach at La Jolla cove. I worked there as a volunteer for La Jolla Friends of the Seals and I can tell you that any human presence on Seal Beach is very, very detrimental to the well-being of the seals. In fact, your picture of the lone navy seal is heartbreaking because it was probably abandoned when a human came too close to the seals, and the rushed into the water to escape because they were scared. Often during the rush to the water, parents will abandon the babies that can’t keep up, or the babies will be trapped in the panic. I apologize if I misunderstood and you are not encouraging sea glass collection near the seals; if you could just share this information about seal safety I would greatly appreciate it! Thank you, and thank you for making such a wonderful site!

    • mauizoo

      Britney, thank you for sharing about the seals here in La Jolla. I live in Maui but come to visit my family close to La Jolla. I love collecting sea glass but never at the expensive of sea life. As I was reading the above article, I was already planning an outing there. I was so saddened by the abandoned baby seal that I won’t go there now. You did a good thing and I thank you for it.

  • Sheryl

    I too agree with the comments above a lifetime homeowner in La Jolla I see so many tourists come and go with disregard to our Wildlife that live here year-round perhaps we can send these people to the following website that I found especially helpful when researching places to find sea glass.
    Thank you san san for speaking up perhaps this writer did not know about our seals plight in la jolla.

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