Scuba Diving in Carmel River State Beach, Carmel, California USA

Skill level:
Advanced to expert
Carmel River State Beach is a state park located in Carmel, north of Big Sur coast, in Monterey County, California, USA.

It is a 1 mi/1.60 km long, breathtaking, public beach with a beautiful lagoon formed by the Carmel River. Carmel River State Beach merges with San Jose Creek State Beach (Monastery Beach). The park was established in 1953. In the lagoon immigrate a large number of migratory birds.

Winter and fall are the best seasons for bird watching. Carmel River State Beach at the section of Central Coast Birding Trail is believed to be one of the most dangerous places for swimming, because of the steep drop – off from shore creating turbulent waves that are incorrectly shown as calm sea and the strong currents.

Because of the number of different diving sites that have easy access to the road, Carmel River Beach is popular for scuba diving. Skill level for divers is advanced to expert, because waves can pop – up suddenly. In the area, there is a large amount of kelp, especially in the spring. In the winter, because of the storms, the kelp is loose.

Some popular beach dives are Copper Roof House, Butterfly House and Carmel Meadows. The area has large swells and strong currents. Divers should check the conditions, before diving. If you see in the horizon boats to appear and disappear with the swells, go back to Monterey County and dive there.

How to Get to Destination

BY CAR FROM Monterey
6.4 mi / 10.3 km, 16 mins
Take the side street to CA-1 S/Cabrillo Hwy. Turn right on Rio Rd. Turn left on Santa Lucia Ave. Turn left on Carmelo St.
Monterey Peninsula Airport,
8.8 mi / 14.2 km

Amtrak’s Coast Starlight stops in nearby Salinas. Amtrak runs a bus service from the station to Carmel with stops in Monterey in between. The train can be slow and is often delayed. The food is okay, but sometimes limited so you might want to bring your own food or snacks.


If you are interested in trying out this amazing sport in this spot press the request button so as to give you more information and prices.


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