Pismo Beach looking south from Dinosaur Park

Pismo Beach Tide Pools

The tide pools in this area are located at the base of step high cliffs. Getting to the tide pools can be challenging. The easiest place to find a way to some tide pools is the park at Dinosaur Caves. The tide pools are small but offer visitors a chance to see common types of marine life. This location is best accessed at low tide. Visitors can expect to see lots of sea anemones, snails, limpets and urchins when conditions are right. The tide pool areas is a flat area with lots of little pools that form in the eroded rocky area at the base of the cliff. There are other locations that have tide pools but these are only accessible to the more adventurous types.

Location and Amenities

The best place to park is the parking area at Dinosaur Caves Park. Park in the lot and walk south toward the hotel. The hotel has a long steep staircase that leads down to the beach area. The parking is free and there are restrooms at the park.

Tidepool Access

Take the staircase from the hotel and viewing area down to the beach. The tide pools are located at the northern end of the small beach area. Make sure to take a look around at the sides of the cliffs as there is marine life that can be found at these locations.

Points of Interest

This location has stunning views of the Pacific Ocean and the tall cliffs that border the beaches in the northern areas. This location also provides a great opportunity to see migrating whales when the season is right. The tide pools themselves are relatively small compared to other locations.

Visitors can expect to find lots of smaller animals in the pools. This area has an area of rock that protrudes from the ground and is eroded in a way that creates lots of small pools of water. These smaller pools have sea anemones, snails, limpets and the occasional sea urchin. Also look for the denser beds of red and brown algae smaller shore crabs can be found in this area.
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