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Cowell Ranch State Beach

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Address: Highway One, Half Moon Bay, CA
Phone Number: 650-726-8819
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The kind of place only the locals know about, this scenic state park is...

The kind of place only the locals know about, this scenic state park is just south of Half Moon Bay and features a sandy beach and a seal preserve, plus trails for hiking and horseback riding.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 16 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 7
  • 8
    Very good
  • 1
  • 0
  • 0
Nice walk out and great beach

The .3 mile walk allows you to see farming of brussel sprouts, given the time of year and a nicely kept gravel trail they takes you to an overlook that is beautiful. You can... read more

4 of 5 starsReviewed September 26, 2015
Burlingame, California
via mobile
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16 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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  • English first
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English first
Burlingame, California
Level Contributor
172 reviews
28 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 70 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 26, 2015 via mobile

The .3 mile walk allows you to see farming of brussel sprouts, given the time of year and a nicely kept gravel trail they takes you to an overlook that is beautiful. You can travel down 30 stairs or so to the beach, which is very nice. On a lower tide day, you can walk petty far to the north,... More 

Thank travelagentreplies
Fremont, California
Level Contributor
3,248 reviews
2,107 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1,872 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 14, 2014

Cowell Ranch State Beach is a pretty beach in Half Moon Bay area., We have enjoyed stopping here and taking a walk to the beach area; it is around a 1/2 mile walk to the beach. As such, it is less populated but beautiful state beach.

1 Thank mini
Level Contributor
15 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 22, 2014

Very nice beach that is secluded off of Highway 1; small parking lot and then a 1-10 minute walk on a trail through some farmland to get to the beach. Long stairs to get down to the beach; very private; Nice 1.5 mile coastal trail starts near the beach stairs.

1 Thank 141MAK
Level Contributor
12 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 22, 2013

I've probably passed this beach so many times on my way to other state beaches in the Half Moon Bay area. Finally, on Memorial Day this past year, one of friends suggested we try this beach. Needless to say, I was taken back by the view of the beach. As you walk from the parking lot to the beach, which... More 

4 Thank Eradravu
Daytona Beach, Florida
Level Contributor
101 reviews
18 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 20, 2013

Stopped here by chance on a day's drive from Pacific Grove. It was beautiful and such a great place to walk and hike around the paths. We did not get down to the beach but it looked beautiful, but cold on the day we visited. The sun came out while we were there and gave us a great photo opp.... More 

Thank 2Italylovers
San Mateo, California
Level Contributor
22 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 20, 2013

What a good find! Beautiful beach surrounded by rocky cliffs. Can get a little breezy, but once you're on the beach with the sun beating down on you - you'll warm right up. We were 1 of maybe 10 people there on a Sunday. TIPS: Get there early; there are only 10-15 parking spaces. I noticed it got fuller after... More 

1 Thank Megan L
Level Contributor
58 reviews
21 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 25, 2013

We were excited that we were in the area when the "Mavericks" surfing contest happened this past weekend. Between "all" the people, traffic and trying to find just where the contest was happening. We searched until we could find a "view' and it was awesome. The ocean is beautiful and this just added to it all.

Thank kim092663
Mountain View, California
Level Contributor
42 reviews
16 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 27, 2012

Can be a little crowded at times when sunny . Road can flood in winter at times of high tide. A nice hike inland. Many nice CA beaches, this is one.

Thank eugenemiya
Pacifica, California
Level Contributor
10 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 26, 2012

Oh I just give up. I came down here to take a healthy hike and generate some good man-sweat and what did I do? I gawked. I pondered. I wondered in awe. I listened. I watched. I took all 2.2 miles in very slowly. So I could hardly call it hiking. This time we turned north at the end of... More 

4 Thank tantien3
Redwood City, CA
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 25, 2012

A small well preserved hamlet and former ranch perserved along with long trails leading to cliff side views. A true small gem of long gone history not to be missed as you travel north on Hwy 1.

Thank dominoman

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Ontario Canada
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