Kayak or Snorkel La Jolla Cove's Underwater Park


La Jolla Cove in the San Diego area is a protected marine reserve because of the amount of sea life that thrive in this ecosystem. For this reason, it’s really popular for swimming, diving and snorkeling. We joined La Jolla Kayak on their Kayak and Snorkel tour to explore the caves and marine life in this ecological reserve.

To Get There

La Jolla Kayak
2199 Avenida De La Playa, La Jolla, CA 92037
You can look around for free residential parking, but be sure to check meters and signs. There is a public beach parking lot called La Jolla Shores Parking but that fills up quickly.
There are public bathrooms in the La Jolla Shores Parking area.

When to Go

If you do this trip in August you’re more likely to see Tiger Sharks! Don’t worry, their mouths are really small and they won’t bother you if you don’t bother them. If you go other times of year you’ll see the California state fish, Garibaldi, and some seals as well.

The Experience

You start this trip by wetsuiting up at the La Jolla Kayak location in La Jolla. The Pacific Coast water is really cold year round. Afterward you walk down to the beach for a quick tutorial on kayaking. After that, into the ocean you go to paddle towards the rocky coastal cliffs, all while you’re guides inform you about the local marine life. While we were paddling along, we saw several seals and dolphins jumping up out of the water near us.

You’ll paddle past sea caves you can peak into, and eventually tie up your kayaks to jump in. Remember, the Pacific is not the Carribean, and generally it’s pretty cold! Opt for wet suits, it’ll be more comfortable for snorkeling.

While snorkeling around these sea caves you’ll see lots of bright orange Garibaldi, the California saltwater state fish. There are also a lot of sea lions that play in the water here. They are friendly, but try not to disturb any on the shore who are resting. We saw a few baby sea lions towards the end of our snorkel and they were really cute and swam right by us.

We unfortunately didn’t see any tiger sharks because we were just slightly off season, but I hope to go back in August sometime. Whether you see them or not, this is a wonderful excursion with plenty of marine life and coastal views to warrant the trip out.

Do you have any other recommendations for La Jolla or San Diego area? Please leave them in the comments below.