Half Moon Bay State Beach

UPDATE (March 31, 2020): This park is temporarily closed to vehicular access. The park remains open for locals who wish to walk, hike and bike (in parks with bike trails) in the park, provided they practice social/physical distancing of 6 feet or more. This is not the time for a road trip to a destination park or beach.

In an effort to prevent visitation surges and help stop the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19), State Parks has implemented the following safety measures to date:
  • Closed some parks, meaning all trails and restrooms within these parks are closed.
  • Closed vehicular access at remaining parks, including for off-highway vehicle riding.
  • Closed all campgrounds, museums and visitor centers.
  • Cancelled all events.

A list of closures is available online at parks.ca.gov/FlattenTheCurve. The list is dynamic and updated on a regular basis.

Phone Number

(650) 726-8819

Max. Trailer Lengths

Trailer: 40 Feet
Camper/Motorhome: 40 Feet

Park Hours

8am-Sunset

Driving Directions to Half Moon Bay SB

The beach is located a half-mile west of Highway 1 with 3 parking lots in the City of Half Moon Bay. The three parking and beach access points are below:
Francis Beach, at the end of Kelly Avenue in the City of Half Moon Bay.
Venice Beach, at the end of Venice Boulevard off Highway 1.
Dunes Beach, at the end of Young Avenue off Highway 1.

Camping and Lodging

Visitors will be able to reserve campsites and lodging six months in advance from the current date. Bookings may extend from the arrival date to the desired departure date – based on availability and the park’s maximum stay rules.

Upcoming Park Events

No events scheduled at this moment.

BOATING
Boating
OVERNIGHT FACILITIES
Family Campsites
Group Campsites
Hike or Bike Campsites
RV Dump Station
RV Access
TRAIL USE
Bike Trails
Hiking Trails
Horseback Riding
DAY-USE ACTIVITIES & FACILITIES
Picnic Areas
Env. Learning/Visitor Center
Exhibits and Programs
Fishing
Interpretive Exhibits
Beach Area
Swimming
Vista Point
Nature & Wildlife Viewing
Windsurfing/Surfing
Family Programs
Geocaching
OTHER FACILITIES & VISITOR INFORMATION
Parking
Restrooms / Showers
Outdoor Showers
Drinking Water Available
Wheelchair Accessible

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TEMPORARY FACILITY CLOSURES AND EVENT CANCELLATIONS 

DAY USE AREAS (trails, beaches): Open; Please bring cash in exact change to pay fees at self-registration stations. 

RESTROOMS: Open; Please bring soap for handwashing or hand sanitizer. 

PARKING LOTS: All parking lots in San Mateo County-area parks and specific parking lots in Santa Cruz County-area parks are temporarily closed. Click here for the latest updates.  

CAMPGROUNDS: Temporarily Closed

PARK STORES, VISITOR CENTERS & MUSEUMS: Temporarily Closed

EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMS & GUIDED TOURS: Temporarily Suspended

LARGE EVENTS: Temporarily Suspended

SPECIAL EVENT PERMIT APPLICATIONS: Temporarily Suspended

California State Parks is taking steps to support state and local efforts to slow the spread of COVID-19 (coronavirus). As of March 23, 2020, State Parks has temporarily closed vehicular traffic to certain parks experiencing high visitation. This includes all San Mateo County parks. To see a current list of impacted parks, visit www.parks.ca.gov/flattenthecurve. For those wishing to take a break in the outdoors, public health officials are advising them to walk, run, hike and bike in their local neighborhoods and walk to parks. Most importantly, the public is being asked not to congregate in the outdoors.

Campgrounds are temporarily closed as of March 17, 2020. Camping reservation holders will be contacted via email for refunds. Visitor Centers, museums, and park stores are also temporarily closed.

Guided tours, educational programs, and large events are temporarily suspended as of March 14, 2020. Tour reservation holders will be contacted via email for refunds. Special event applications have been suspended until further notice as of March 14, 2020.

As of March 17, 2020, non-campground outdoor areas of parks, including trails and beaches, remain open. Visitors are reminded to practice social distancing and maintain at least six feet between other visitors and anyone who is coughing or sneezing. Restrooms also remain open, and visitors are advised to take soap for hand washing and alcohol-based hand sanitizers when water is not available.

State Parks recommends that everyone follow precautionary guidance issued by the California Department of Public Health, public local health agencies, the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention when recreating in the outdoors. Everyone has the responsibility to “flatten the COVID-19 curve at Parks” by maintaining a social distance of 6 ft. or more when recreating in the outdoors, and staying home if they are sick. If visitors cannot maintain social distancing, they need to leave the park.

For the most up-to-date information on how State Parks is supporting the state’s COVID-19 efforts, please visit www.parks.ca.gov/flattenthecurve and follow State Parks on its social media platforms: Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Half Moon Bay State Beach Campground is now on the new, ReserveCalifornia, reservation system. Campsite reservations must be made through ReserveCalifornia by calling 1-800-444-PARK (7275) or through their website at www.reservecalifornia.com.

Visiting Half Moon Bay


Half Moon Bay park imageFour miles of broad, sandy beaches stretch out to welcome visitors to Half Moon Bay. This picturesque setting is ideal for sunbathing, fishing and picnicking. A campground provides accommodations for those who wish to visit longer.

 





Half Moon Bay coast imageFacilities/Activities
The Half Moon Bay State Beach Visitor Center is open Saturdays and Sundays.  Admission to the Visitor Center is free.  The Visitor Center is completely accessible to those with disabilities. Come on in and learn about the exciting world of the beach and experience the cultural history of the Coastside.  

Francis Beach has a campground with 52 individual sites, some suitable for tent camping, others for trailers or recreational vehicles. Some campsites have electrical hookups. Water and sewer hookups are not available, but there is a dump station and a water filling station.  Rental RV’s are not allowed to be dropped off or picked up from the park.

Coin-operated hot showers are also available. (approximately 2 minutes per quarter)

Venice Beach has outside showers and flush toilets.

Coastside Trail runs along the eastern boundary of the four beaches providing close to a three mile stretch to walk, jog or ride bikes. The trail continues north to Pillar Point Harbor.

Basic Park Information

FIRES are NOT allowed on the beach.

HORSES are allowed on the dirt Coastside Trail from Venice Beach to Francis Beach. While in the state parks, horses are restricted to the designated horse trail and are not permitted on State Beaches.

DOGS are prohibited on the beaches at all times. Dogs are permitted in the campground, in the day-use picnic areas, and on the Coastal Trail. Dogs must be controlled with a leash of no more than six feet at all times.
Where Can I Take My Dog.pdf

BEACH WHEELCHAIR - The all-terrain beach wheelchair is available for use by the public at no cost, and may be checked out from the Francis State Beach entrance station on Kelly Avenue. Unlike street wheelchairs, this specially designed chair has large balloon tires which allow the chair to be used on the beach without sinking into the sand. With this chair, wheelchair users may access the beach at several locations along the Half Moon Bay coast. The purchase of the wheelchair was made possible, in part, from a grant by the local chapter of the Lions Club.

OCEAN SAFETY - Always use caution when you are in or near the ocean. The ocean water is very cold year round. Even a short swim can cause cramps or hypothermia (a life threatening condition which occurs when your body temperature drops below normal). In addition, strong rip currents can pull even the most experienced swimmers off shore.

DRONES are not allowed in the park. To protect wildlife and cultural resources, and for the safety and welfare of visitors and staff, the park is closed to the use of Model Aircraft, Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS), and Gliders in flight.

COLLECTING is not allowed. Please refrain from removing shells, driftwood, and other natural beach features. 

FIREWORKS are prohibited.

SPECIAL EVENTS and weddings require a permits. For permit information contact: San Mateo Sector Office (650) 726-8819 or email SMPermits@parks.ca.gov.

FILM & PHOTOGRAPHY PERMITS: For information on obtaining these permits please contact the park directly at (650) 726-8815.

Additional Visitor Services

  • Friendly Acres/Sea Horse Ranch (Horseback trail rides)

Teachers

Schedule your class for a free field trip to the San Mateo coast and visit Half Moon Bay State Beach, Pescadero Marsh State Natural Preserve, or Bean Hollow State Beach. We offer a variety of hands-on programs for school groups K-12 focusing on shoreline habitats. All field trips are approximately 2 hours long. You are invited to stay and eat lunch at our picnic tables over-looking the beach.

Click here for more information.

Kids2Parks LogoKids2Parks is an innovative park-equity program to bring students from Title 1 schools to State Park field trips. The program, a partnership between California State Parks and Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks, increases the number of students who have visited a state park or beach by reducing barriers to access. The program offers transportation funding for field trips to select Title 1 schools in Santa Cruz, San Mateo, and Santa Clara counties. For more information, and to apply please visit www.thatsmypark.org/visit/k2p/.