Bixby Bridge, Highway 1, California

Carmel Blog

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Dive into the Wonders of Point Lobos

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Monterey CA Attractions Tags: ,

A beautifully-colored rock with starfish clinging to it.

Photo by Kip Evans

Imagine swimming into a forest of giant kelp, feeling the warm sunshine on your back and the cold waters all around you. Point Lobos State Marine Reserve provides a chance for divers to explore wonders of the Pacific Ocean. Located to the south of Carmel by-the-Sea, Point Lobos is located on the north end of the Big Sur coastline. It is a less than ten minute drive from the Carmel Mission Inn. Point Lobos is widely considered California’s best dive spot due to the rich marine life, clear water and interesting topography.

Harbor seals and sea otters make great photo opportunities. Underwater, there are multicolored anemones, schools of fish and other reef dwelling creatures will capture your attention. As the diving areas are part of the Marine Reserve, divers don’t catch anything but beautiful sights.

If you would like to see the valleys and boulders that comprise the underwater topography, you can check out the 3D model of the dive areas. This model is located at the Whaler’s Cove, which is the parking area of the main dive location. The model provides divers and non-divers alike the ability to visualize the scenic seascape.

Established in 1973, the Point Lobos Ecological Reserve quickly became one of California’s most well-known no-take reserves. This ensures that the recreational diving is non-consumptive, which keeps the fish populations large and diverse. The Ecological Reserve was renamed The Point Lobos State Marine Reserve and expanded to include the Point Lobos State Marine Conservation Area in 2007.

Entrance $10 per vehicle
Scuba Diving $10 per person, teams of two or three required
Snorkeling $10 per person, teams of two or three required
Boats or Vessels $25 launch fee per vessel, collected at entrance.
Advance reservations are required. Go to for more information.