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Where are the 5 Best Beaches Near National City, California?

Where are the 5 Best Beaches Near National City, California?

Near the southernmost part of California are some great beaches near National City to visit. Team


1 min read

August 31, 2023

National City, located in San Diego County, may be better known for its bustling atmosphere, shopping centers, and dining opportunities than for its beaches. However, the benefit of being located in Southern California is the proximity to some of the state’s most stunning coastal attractions. If you’re looking to swap the city streets for sandy shores, here are five of the best beaches near National City to help you make the most out of your beach day.

1. Coronado Beach

About 9 miles from National City, Coronado Beach is often named among America's best beaches. Located on Coronado Island, the beach boasts a unique blend of small-town charm and idyllic landscapes. The long stretches of golden sands are perfect for sunbathing, beach volleyball, or building sandcastles. The waters are equally inviting for swimmers and surfers alike. Don't forget to visit the iconic Hotel del Coronado, which provides a beautiful backdrop for this picturesque beach.

2. Imperial Beach

Situated approximately 8 miles southwest of National City, Imperial Beach offers a laid-back atmosphere that’s perfect for families and outdoor enthusiasts. Whether you're into surfing, paddleboarding, or simply taking a leisurely walk along the pier, this beach has something for everyone. The Tijuana River National Estuarine Research Reserve nearby offers a chance to explore California’s coastal wetlands, making it a great destination for birdwatching and environmental education.

3. Silver Strand State Beach

Around 13 miles from National City, Silver Strand State Beach is a haven for those who enjoy quieter, less crowded beach experiences. This isthmus connects Coronado Island to Imperial Beach and is ideal for activities like swimming, snorkeling, and beachcombing. Camping is also available, providing the opportunity for a full weekend beach getaway.

4. Mission Beach

For those willing to venture a bit further, Mission Beach is about 16 miles northwest of National City. This beach is synonymous with the quintessential Southern California experience—think roller coasters, beachside eateries, and plenty of space for volleyball and frisbee. Adjacent to Belmont Park, a classic beachside amusement park, Mission Beach offers a vibrant atmosphere that attracts both locals and tourists.

5. La Jolla Shores

Approximately 20 miles from National City, La Jolla Shores offers a different kind of beach experience, characterized by its rocky formations and marine life. Ideal for snorkeling and scuba diving, La Jolla Shores is famous for its underwater park where you can spot a variety of marine animals like fish, rays, and even small sharks. For those less inclined towards underwater adventures, the scenic cliffs and caves offer ample opportunity for hiking and exploration.

National City's convenient location in San Diego County provides easy access to a wide array of beach experiences—from the family-friendly atmosphere of Imperial Beach to the adventurous allure of La Jolla Shores. Whether you're a resident or just visiting, these nearby beaches offer the perfect escape to experience the beauty and diversity of Southern California’s coastline.

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