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Shaw s Cove

Shaw’s Cove is tucked away amidst a quaint residential community. It is located south of Crescent Bay, with free parking along the street and metered parking along the pacific Coast highway (PCH). Access to the beach is off of Fairview Street and Cliff Drive.

This is the place to be if you are interested in scuba diving. A sandy beach entry, with a sand and rocky bottom, beautiful reefs with tunnels and caves and an abundance of sea life including; green moray eels, red sea urchins, octopus, sand bass, perch, and Garibaldi's makes Shaw’s Cove an adventurous diving spot. If the conditions are smooth and clear, it can also be a great place to go snorkeling.

It is best to arrive early and if possible on the weekdays due to the popularity of this dive spot. Scuba divers in training come to Shaw’s Cove primarily on the weekends. Mostly during the summer months, students arrive before sunrise to find a parking spot. Therefore it can be very difficult to dive, as the number of students can exceed 100 a day.

The cove is deep and the points extend far enough out to sea as to protect the inside waters from the heavy winds and waves coming from the northwest. The current is not very strong in the cove. The surf is usually a safe height (2-3 feet) and the tides are of little concern. Visibility varies by the season. It ranges from 8 to 15 feet between June and October, to 25 feet from October into January. The rainy season is January through March, which creates high surf and muddy waters.

The conditions for surfing at Shaw’s Cove are not the best for the Laguna Beach area, but it could be fun to paddle out when the visibility is good for an above the water view of the reefs below. It is better to bring a boogie board or snorkel to this beach.

Shaw’s Cove is another one of Laguna’s family beaches. The trouble-free “free” parking and easy access to the beach make for a relaxing day out in the sun. There are no picnic tables or fire rings (fires and BBQs are prohibited). It’s best to bring a blanket or a travel table, if you are planning on lunch or dinner.

The beach is open from 6am-10pm
No glass containers/alcoholic beverages
No fires
No dogs allowed on the beach
There are no public restrooms