Visit USA - America's Best Travel Guide

Salinas River State Beach

SALINAS RIVER STATE BEACH: This is a wonderful place for observing birds of all sorts. It is a habitat to many species of wild birds, including Western meadowlarks, hawks, jays, valley quail, finches, towhees and sparrows. Shore birds that winter along the bay can also be found on the dunes of Salinas River State Park. Horse back riding is permitted at the River beach. While Salinas River Beach has some of the regions most interesting sand dune formations, they are not open to the public except for the trail that follows the Salinas River for about two miles. Because the waves and rip currents can be very dangerous swimming and wading is prohibited and dogs are not allowed on this beach.

CLIMATE: The climate of the Central Coast varies some. Usually the temperatures are moderate year round, with a guarantee of fog and heavier marine layers during the months of June through August. The best weather can be found during late summer or fall and as with most coastal areas, and rain is likely to occur some during the winter months. Layered clothing is recommended.

  • Horseback riding
  • Fishing
  • Bird watching
  • Walking
  • Jogging
  • Beachcombing
  • Photography is popular because of the dunes and species of birds

LOCAL FLAVOR: Moss landing is on the outskirts of the Monterey Peninsula and is only about 30 minutes from Santa Cruz, so there are an array of things one can do going in either direction. Popular activities at Moss landing are kayaking, surfing, windsurfing, sailing, horseback riding, whale-watching tours, hiking and camping. Moss Landing is also a popular place to enjoy a picnic lunch and just like Salinas River Beach, a wonderful place to view wildlife.


  • Monterey Bay Aquarium
  • Cannery Row
  • Monterey Fisherman’s Wharf
  • John Steinbeck Library
  • Monterey Museum of Art
  • Laguna Seca Speedway
  • 17-Mile Drive, Pebble Beach
  • Pebble Beach Golf Resort
  • Monterey Recreation Trail
  • Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History
  • Carmel Mission and Basilica Museum
  • Mission San Antonio de Padua
  • Monterey State Historic Park
  • Boronda History Center
  • Center for Photographic Art: The former offices of Ansel Adams worked exhibits
  • National Steinbeck Center
  • Forest Outdoor Theatre of Carmel: Live productions and Shakespeare
  • Extensive art gallery exhibits in both Monterey and Carmel

by: Carla Iacovetti
©2006Carla Iacovetti