9 private beaches in San Diego to avoid the summer crowds

Looking to ditch the crowds this summer? Luckily for you, there are some private beaches in San Diego that you can visit without the crowds.

These are on the quieter end and have a bit more room and space to spread out than your usual busy beach. 

If you’re looking for a place to relax without battling those crazy summer crowds then be sure to keep reading as we break down the best places to go. 


  1. Windansea Beach
  2. Marine Street Beach
  3. North Ponto Beach
  4. Blacks Beach
  5. Grandview Beach
  6. Stonesteps Beach
  7. Leucadia Beach
  8. Swamis Beach
  9. San Onofre

Whether you’re bringing your dog, family, friends, or heck even yourself then be sure to plan ahead with the most important things to bring with you to the beach.

Check out our blog of the 30 Must Things you Shouldn’t Forget to Bring to the Beach this Summer. 

If you’re bringing your dog then your dog needs its accessories too. Check out the dog beach accessories we recommend right here.

Don’t forget to bring your beach tent with you so you can relax and nap. Check out our blog as we review the best camping tents for 2020. 

San Diego’s Best Beaches

It’s no surprise that San Diego has some of the best beaches of all time. Who can ever compete with the sun, sand, and waves here? Let’s not forget the delicious cuisines of many local restaurants sprawled near the coastlines.

If this is your first time here and or plan on visiting soon then do not forget to our blog with the top beaches to visit

Not ranking in any particular order here is the top beaches that make the list of must-see beaches in San Diego

Dog Beaches

Pier Beaches

If you’re looking for a beach with a gorgeous pier, then be sure you check any of these out.

  • Ocean Beach (OB)
  • Oceanside Beach
  • Imperial Beach
  • Pacific Beach

North County Beaches

Here are the North County Beaches in San Diego. Some of the most gorgeous beaches are found in North County. These are my go-to beaches:

The Busiest beaches of San Diego

San Diego is very popular and it is almost always crowded! With endless amounts of entertainment and sightseeing, some of the most popular beaches have become so popular. 

Now these beaches are gorgeous and have definitely become more popular for tourists.

It’s no wonder why so many people flock to these every summer. (If you do have time to check these out in your vacation then do so. Otherwise, look elsewhere to avoid the summer crowds).


Where to find the less crowded beaches of San Diego

Now if you want to know where to find the quietest beaches then be sure to check the ones out below. 

Just remember that some of these beaches may not have the amenities you look for when traveling. But some do. 

Even though it may be quieter than most beaches, you won’t find the typical kayaking and touristy events.

Just keep in mind the location of nearby bathrooms because a couple of beaches do have them a bit far off and there may or may not be lifeguards. 

These private beaches offer serenity and peacefulness. Usually, these beaches are not crazy crowded, but summer can help them become a wee bit busier than usual. 

The nice thing about this beach is that it beats the summer crowds and you do not have to worry about fighting for a spot in the sand. Here are my top choices in no particular order. 

Windansea Beach

An often smaller beach found closer to La Jolla. This beach is often quieter and smaller. You can definitely find a lot of surfers here. 

Marine Street Beach

Located in the La Jolla Beach area, this beach is perfect for surfers, and many families. The sunsets are mesmerizing and oftentimes perfect. Parking can be limited. 

North Ponto Beach

Many people will pull over to catch the sunset. Though you can probably get better views by parking and walking all the way around. Most people won’t.

You have to park near South Carlsbad State Beach and walk your way up to North Ponto beach. Parking is along the road too. 

Blacks Beach

The only clothing-optional beach in San Diego County. It’s no wonder this beach is quieter. You can definitely find space to spread your beach towel since the crowds are a lot smaller

Grandview Beach

Very popular for surfers. There are bathrooms here and you can definitely sunbathe and watch the surfers. Perfect place for locals and tourists. Beautiful. Sometimes there is a high tide.

Do not go if there is.  WARNING: DO NOT set up at the base of the cliffs. The high bluffs are caused by erosion and can break off. 

Stonesteps Beach

Another beach on the quieter end, though parking is limited it is perfect to have a beach day. 

Private Beaches Pin 2

Leucadia Beach

Also known as Beacon Beach, it is the perfect area to relax for a day. Read our Beach Blog on this beach. 

Swami’s Beach

Nestled in Encinitas Beach, this beach is much quieter than Cardiff-by-the-Sea. You can find picnic tables and benches here. You will be able to spot many surfers. Parking is limited and you can find it along the street. 

San Onofre

Closer to the San Clemente Area, this beach also offers an amazing camping ground area. 



Like most beaches in California, almost all are crowded and increasing in popularity. With summer literally right around the corner, the vacation booking and frantic beach getaways is practically here. 

But of course, not all beaches are made the same! Each beach is unique in its own way. If you’re looking for a nice quiet getaway then do not forget to check out more of a private beach.  It has its perks. 

Some of the beaches are a little bit further walking distance to say the main area of the beach, but of course, you will find fewer crowds and more space. 

Other beaches are very very popular in the summer. Such beaches include Mission Bay where Belmont Park and Seaworld are situated. And something like La Jolla Cove where everyone goes to check out because of the sea lions!

Don’t get me wrong.

These beaches are gorgeous and definitely a must-see this summer. But if you’re looking for more quieter and private beaches then do not the private beaches.

If you have time then you can definitely check out both kinds of beaches since they are perfect to ride out. 

What is your favorite beach and why? Let me know in the comments below!

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Jess and Jeanette
About Jess and Jeanette

Jess and Jeanette are two sisters who created Unseen Beaches. This beach travel blog was inspired by their family beach vacations taken while growing up. Helping you discover the best U.S. beach destinations worth visiting, staying, and eating at.

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Hi! This is Jess and Jeanette. Two sisters & beach travelers. We built this blog to share our travels in hopes of helping you plan your next beach vacation. Cheers! ❤️



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