“Can we go see the seals!?” The question was invariably on the tips of our tongues when we were anywhere near the beaches in La Jolla as children. For most locals and tourists the Children’s Pool, or as it is also known, Casa Beach, is the place to go see cute and sometimes spunky seals lounge, play, and swim. More often than not you will also hear their incessant seal bark chatter. Which brings us to our next beach on our La Jolla Beach Spotlight.
In the late 1800s groups of people would take day trips to La Jolla’s coastline for picnics, swimming, and fun in the sun. La Jolla coastlines at that time were a danger to swim in because of the strong cross currents and most were advised against going in the water. The warning was particularly heeded for high tide.
Ellen Browning Scripps, a La Jolla philanthropist and resident since 1897, decided to do something about the hazardous swimming conditions. She wanted to create a place that was safe for children to swim and play. So the plans went into motion to build a breakwater. In 1931 Children’s Pool was opened to the public as a safe beach for all but most importantly for children.
Children’s Pool Today
For over 50 years, the Children’s Pool was an ideal swimming beach for children and families to spend the day. Over the years, the sea lions and harbor seals have made a relaxing resting place out of the area. Swimming is now strongly discouraged to protect these animals.
Visitors from near and far love to stroll out on the sea wall and watch the harbor seals and sea lions. This also gives guests a beautiful 360 degree view of La Jolla and the Pacific Ocean. Be careful, you might get a little wet as the waves crash onto the breakwater. The wall and walkway just above make for an excellent photo spot. A nearby park makes for the perfect place to have a picnic or just play in the grass.
Visitors can find bathrooms and restrooms just before the steps down to the sea wall. Lifeguards are on duty year round from 9 in the morning until dusk. There is street parking available, however, this area tends to be extremely busy and free spots get taken quickly. There are paid parking lots within walking distance of the beach.
While it’s strongly advised to not go out onto the sea wall at night, the walkway path above the beach is always perfect for a nightly stroll. Sit at one of the benches or belvederes and listen to the sound of the waves moving and crashing in the darkness. The Children’s Pool is a perfect spot to visit any time of year. You will always be able to catch some harbor seals lounging on the beach or swimming in the water.
The Children’s Pool is Located at 850 Coast Boulevard, La Jolla, CA 92037. Be sure to go and visit!
Follow The Series: La Jolla Beach Guide.
[Images: Wikipedia.org, divebums.com, kpbs.org, dsoderblog.com]