These California state beaches offer more than sand and water. Read on to discover some events lined up for the coming weeks, special wildlife happenings and sights you won’t want to forget to capture with your camera.

1. Marina State Beach
Want to do something more than soak up the sun and play in the water? Marina State Beach is a popular destination for hang-gliding. What’s better than enjoying the beach from the sky?5234560515_0d6f410ecb_z
Photo by Karaian

2. Emma Wood State Beach
Head over to Emma Wood State Beach in Ventura for a chance to explore crumbling ruins of a WWII artillery site. Whoever said history and relaxation couldn’t go together? Also, the beach is known for dolphin sightings. If you get any neat photos, we’d love to see them!
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Photo by Kathleen Luschek

3. Andrew Molera State Park
Moss covered rocks over this sandy beach next to the backdrop of a range of cliffs- what more can you ask for? The scattered rocks give this beach a completely different feel, you’d be surprised. Plus, Big Sur is right next door and around June 15 a seasonal footbridge is installed to allow pedestrians to cross directly between the Big Sur River and the Beach Trail. The bridge is usually only up until late October.
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Photo by vkanya

4. Oceano Dunes State Vehicular Registration Area
Oceano Dunes is the only California State Park where you can drive vehicles on the beach! The offroad area has over 5 ½ miles of sand dunes you can drive over. Day use hours are 6am to 11pm.

5. Pismo State Beach
Monarch butterflies aren’t hard to spot in California, but how about a colony? Pismo State Beach has the biggest colony of monarch butterflies in the U.S during the winter season. Visit to take a peek (but don’t disturb)! Plus, the location is perfect for a sightseeing roadtrip off Pacific Highway on your way there!

Which of these do you plan to visit? With the options of WWII ruins, off-roading on the beach, butterfly watching, hang-gliding or crossing into Big Sur, you have plenty to choose from! Have other ideas? Share them with us on Facebook!