Don’t Visit Stonesteps Beach Until You Read This

Stonesteps Beach 2-1

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Stonesteps Beach is not really a well-known beach among tourists.

And it shouldn’t surprise you why.

This beach doesn’t offer much.

It’s more of a local beach that is mostly known to those who live nearby.

Nevertheless, it’s still a beautiful beach worth checking out if you do get the chance.

We explored and put together an overview of what to expect, so read on!


12 Things to Know about Stonesteps Beach

Stonesteps Beach picture-1

Before visiting this beach there are a few things you should know.

Here are 12 things to know:

1.No Bathrooms


The downfall of this beach is that there are no restrooms or running water.

Which is why I don’t recommend spending a long time here.

There are not even portable potties.

So, if you’re planning on spending more than an hour, make sure to go before you leave.

2.No Showers Either

Another thing worth mentioning is that besides not having bathrooms there are no showers as well here.

So, if you like rinsing off the sand and saltwater before leaving the beach, this might not be the best place for you.

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There are a few benches at the top of the beach where you will see people sit and look out the beach.

As well as a trash and recycle bin to throw away anything you may need.

3. Lifeguards – Sometimes

Lifeguard Tower in Stonesteps Beach-1

When visiting Stonesteps Beach you will find one lifeguard tower here.

I got the opportunity to talk to a lifeguard here and found out that lifeguards are only available on the weekends.

From the months of May to the end of September.

So, if you’re planning on visiting during the week or during the Fall season I would recommend going with a friend and not alone so you can keep an eye on each other while swimming.

4. One Entrance at Stonesteps Beach

You’ll find Stonesteps Beach situated between houses.

There is only one entrance to get on the beach and out.

Visiting during the weekend?

Expect it to be busy while walking down the entrance.

5. Stonesteps and Wooden Stairs

View of Stonesteps Beach from top

Stonesteps Beach only entrance is composed of stone steps and wooden stairs to the beach.

There are over 70 steps to get down to the beach.

I counted up to 70 until I decided to stop, ha!

So, if you have any type of knee problem or are not in good shape I wouldn’t recommend this beach for you.

Also, the wooden stairs can get slippery from the high tide, I noticed this when visiting.

So, be careful when going up and down.

I recommend wearing shoes with good grip.

6. Not Accessible for Persons who use Wheelchairs

person at beach in wheelchair

As previously mentioned there is only one entrance and rough to get down to the beach!

It is composed of over 70 stone steps and wooden stairs just to get to the beach.

There are no boardwalks, elevators, ramps, or any other type of assistive equipment available here to help get to the beach.

Furthermore, if you have a stroller or decide to bring a beach wagon it’s impossible to go down the steps without someone else holding one side of it.

7. No Official Parking Lots

This beach doesn’t really have official parking lots.

The beach is found between two houses and the entrance has a concrete wide open section, but really no outlined parking lots.

Rather, people park on the streets. In front of resident houses.

On S. El Portal street and Neptune Street.

Just be mindful when parking in front of residential areas and don’t block driveways.

The last thing you want to deal with is having an angry resident who calls the towing company on you while you’re at the beach!

8. No Concession Stands

concession stand

This beach offers no concession stands or any type of food options here.

So, make sure to pack plenty of food and drinks if you’re planning on spending more than an hour here.

9. High Tides and Rip Currents


The few times I have been to Stonesteps Beach I noticed that the tides can get pretty high.

High tides and rip currents are always a risk when swimming in the ocean.

Even if there is a lifeguard on duty, I recommend not swimming alone and always keeping an eye on the waves and tides before entering the water.

Obey all posted signs about surf conditions and never turn your back on the ocean.

10. Not Dog-Friendly at Stonesteps Beach

In addition, this beach is not dog-friendly.

Dogs are not allowed on the sand or in the water at this beach.

However, they are allowed on the sidewalk at the top of the beach entrance.

The few times I’ve seen dogs here are walking along the residential streets with their owners.

11. No Alcohol Allowed

men drinking alcohol

Did you know that all beaches in San Diego don’t allow alcohol?

The permanent ban came into effect in 2008.

When a fight broke out in Pacific Beach between some men drinking that got so ugly that the police had to use riot gear.

You can thank those guys for that permanent ban!

So, if you’re planning on packing a cooler make sure to leave the booze at home.

Violators can be fined up to $250 and/or sent to jail for up to six months.

Trust me it ain’t worth bringing your alcohol here!

12. Type of People You’ll Encounter: Locals

Lady walking along beach

After visiting Stonesteps Beach several times during the week to weekends you can tell that this beach is mostly populated by locals.

You’ll see elderly and young couples walking along the residential streets and walking along the shoreline of Stonesteps Beach.

There are a few families who come during the weekends and you’ll notice children playing in the sand.

It’s a great beach if you’re looking to avoid tourist crowds.

It doesn’t really get popular like Moonlight State Beach or Cardiff by the Sea.


Overlooking Stonesteps Beach

Is Stonesteps Beach good for kids?

Stonesteps Beach isn’t the best beach for small children because their lifeguard presence is limited and the entrance is composed of many stone steps and wooden stairs.

kids playing at beach

If you have small children, I recommend going to Moonlight State Beach or Cardiff by the Sea which both offer playgrounds and easier access to the sand.

Can you bring food to Stonesteps Beach?

fruit snacks

Yes, you can bring food to Stonesteps Beach.

It’s actually recommended since this beach doesn’t offer any concession stands.

If you don’t know what to bring we put together a list of 20 snack ideas to take to the beach.

What beaches are closest to Stonesteps Beach?

Moonlight Beach Encinitas 2

There are several beaches located nearby Stone steps Beach.

Leucadia State Beach (Beacon’s) is about a 4-minutes drive away.

Less than 5 miles away you can find Moonlight State Beach as well as Cardiff by the Sea.

All of these beaches are located in North County San Diego.


Lady overlooking Stonesteps Beach

Stonesteps Beach is a great hidden gem in Encinitas, San Diego.

It’s perfect if you’re looking to avoid tourist crowds and enjoy a more local beach experience.

Keep in mind that there are no food options or parking lots at this beach so make sure to pack plenty of food and drinks.

Let us know in the comments below if you’ve been to Stonesteps Beach and what your experience was like!

Happy beach exploring!



Jess & Jeanette

Jess and Jeanette, two sisters who founded Unseen Beaches, were inspired by their family’s beach vacations while growing up.

Their passion lies in guiding you toward the most remarkable beach destinations across the U.S., while also protecting and preserving these beautiful coastal treasures! 🌊❤️

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