555 Pier Avenue, Oceano
San Luis Obispo County
Parking Fee: $10
Park Hours: dawn to sunset
Caution: Check with rangers or lifeguards that conditions are safe for your planned activities.
Pismo Beach is one of the leading destinations for beach-goers along California's central coast. The 6-mile long beach is popular for swimming, surfing, sea kayaking, kite boarding, fishing, and clamming.
Just to the south of Pismo Beach, Oceano Dunes State Vehicular Recreation Area contains 5½ miles of beach open for vehicle use and acres of sand dunes allowing 4-wheel vehicles.
The town of Pismo Beach and its surrounding communities have everything visitors to the area could want - ample lodging and restaurants of all price ranges, strong community resources such as parks and public transportation, and a variety of services and shops that support beach and ocean adventures.
A string of city parks are found along the bluffs overlooking the ocean around Shell Beach. These provide wonderful bases where locals and visitors can park, enjoy spectacular ocean vistas, picnic, and often access the beach or connecting trails. Some have restrooms, picnic areas, playground equipment, and drinking fountains. North to south:
With the towns of Pismo Beach, Grover Beach, and Oceano next to the beach, finding beach supplies and snacks usually only requires a short drive.
Pismo Yogurt, 187 Pomeroy Avenue
Price Street Market, 1100 Price Street
Pismo Food Store, 501 Price Street
Pismo Market, 700 Dolliver Street (Highway 1)
Paucho's Surf Shop, 181 Pomeroy Avenue
Grand Liquors, 816 West Grand Avenue
Starbucks, 1758 Grand Avenue
Vons 1758 Grand Ave.
Rite Aid Pharmacy 1690 Grand Ave.
Red Dirt Coffee House, 1452 East Grand Avenue
Pismo State Beach extends from the foot of Wilmar Street to the Santa Maria River. The section north of Pismo Creek is administered by the city.
A number of good access points to Pismo Beach are found along the frontage area from the town of Pismo Beach south through Grover Beach and Oceano. Not all of them have more than streetside parking.
The Regional Transit Authority (RTA) provides public transportation
around the Pismo Beach area. Their service extends south to Santa Maria and north to Hearst
Regional Transit Authority
California State Parks and Recreation cautions that "large surf, cold water temperatures, backwash, sudden drop-offs, pounding shorebreak, and dangerous rip currents can turn what seem like safe activities such as playing near the surf line, wading, or climbing on rock outcroppings, deadly." Learn more about ocean safety at CA State Parks: Ocean Safety