We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
$25 Amazon.com Gift Card Get yours when you book a hotel on TripAdvisor and review your stay!
Sponsored by:
Map
Satellite
Map updates are paused. Zoom in to see updated info.
Reset zoom
Updating Map...
Sponsored by:
Get directions
Address: Highway 1, Half Moon Bay, CA
Phone Number: 650-728-5336
Website
Description:

Gray whales can often be spotted close to the shore of this scenic beach....

Gray whales can often be spotted close to the shore of this scenic beach. Surrounded by high cliffs, it features a clothing-optional section during the spring.

read more

TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 41 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 26
    Excellent
  • 10
    Very good
  • 2
    Average
  • 1
    Poor
  • 1
    Terrible
Beautiful, very quiet in the early morning

This was our last stop in California, on our way to the airport to fly home to Maine. I had gotten hurt the day before so I didn't climb the stairs down to the beach, but my... read more

4 of 5 starsReviewed 6 days ago
RDC72
,
Windham, Maine
Add Photo Write a Review

41 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
Language
Showing 40: English reviews
Windham, Maine
Level Contributor
50 reviews
29 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 6 days ago NEW

This was our last stop in California, on our way to the airport to fly home to Maine. I had gotten hurt the day before so I didn't climb the stairs down to the beach, but my husband did (see pic). We loved the view and the fact that no one else was there when we visited. It was a... More 

Helpful?
Thank RDC72
Navarre, Florida
Level Contributor
375 reviews
159 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 159 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 15, 2016

Absolutely stunning private cove just outside of San Francisco near Pacifica. Parking is limited and the steps down to the beach (and back up!) are killer, but it is gorgeous and sometimes you can actually see whales.

Helpful?
1 Thank blnavarremary
Corona, California
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 15, 2016

We went there monday noon time, we felt like we were the only people on that beach for a moment, stll, only a few people was there after an hour, very relaxing and picture perfect cove, no whales though, crossing from parking lot is scary specially with little kids....came back to our truck at parking lot and our truck was... More 

Helpful?
3 Thank ebbcvc95
Level Contributor
149 reviews
41 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 10, 2016

We stopped here as a fluke, we couldn't get to the beach but just wanted to check it out so we looked from the cliff next to the road. Although we were told there were no whales we spoted 2 baby grey whales and a mother. Based on their breathing patterns they appeared to be sleeping with the mother watching... More 

Helpful?
1 Thank Lorraine J
Huntsville, Alabama
Level Contributor
11 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 7, 2016

This beach can be a little tough to get to - the parking lot is across the street, so be careful crossing. You'll go past a gated road that is a little steep, then turn to your right and go down a short path where you'll eventually get to a set of stairs. My friend and I didn't find the... More 

Helpful?
Thank Brooke H
San Bruno, California
Level Contributor
15 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 25, 2016

It's pretty steep walk down but it's a nice small and secluded little spot. I like to come here before or after a hike along the cliff tops which are accessible right across the road. A few other reviews call it a nude beach, but I've only ever seen one gentleman in the buff a couple times in the many... More 

Helpful?
Thank Faye2441
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level Contributor
21 reviews
13 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 10, 2016

Gray Whale Cove or Devil's Slide is a gem of a beach in northern california. When you get to the parking lot, you have to cross the highway and then head down a steep asphalt driveway past a gate. There is a trashcan and portapotty at the end of the driveway right next to the beginning to a long set... More 

Helpful?
4 Thank naturist1234
Minnesota
Level Contributor
78 reviews
28 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 13, 2016

You will enter through going down a huge stair case. Its a gorgeous beach with the perfect amount of sun and wind. I had no idea that if you go to the left, clothing is optional. The right side is a little more safe, but you will still see lots of skin. The view from the top is breath taking!

Helpful?
Thank Angela K
Gainesville, Florida, United States
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 22, 2015 via mobile

We went on a monday afternoon and the place is so peaceful. Only a few people relaxing and enjoying the beach while waiting for the sunset. Im glad we waited. Watching the sunset was so beautiful.

Helpful?
Thank Paul C
Hampton nh
Level Contributor
264 reviews
36 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 85 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 8, 2015 via mobile

Stopped while we were just driving around , was suggested to stop from the hotel and glad we took there advice . Quite spot, and porta potties , saw surfers there , just a great stop if your in the area !

Helpful?
1 Thank Hollmark

Travelers who viewed Gray Whale Cove State Beach also viewed

 
Half Moon Bay, CA
Half Moon Bay, CA
 

Been to Gray Whale Cove State Beach? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Questions & Answers

Here's what previous visitors have asked, with answers from representatives of Gray Whale Cove State Beach and other visitors
1 question
Ask a question

See all questions (1)

Questions? Get answers from Gray Whale Cove State Beach staff and past visitors.
Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Will you pick up and drop off at my hotel?
  • I have a family of 7. Can your tour accommodate all of us together?
  • How should I dress for this tour?