Tuesday, August 12, 2008


Leo Carrillo beach in Malibu is consistently one of my favorite places to visit and photograph. I just love climbing around the rocks and investigating the tide pool. There are several ways to get there, but I usually take the 101 North to Malibu Canyon, head south over to Pacific Coast Highway, then West (a right turn) on PCH approximately 25 miles until you hit Leo Carrillo. From the Valley to Leo it's about a 45 minute to hour drive each way. The tide pool is just in front of the #3 lifeguard tower (and incidentally, dogs are allowed on leash from this tower and continuing west up the beach). I just google low tide Malibu to find out the best time to go there and check out the tide pool. Usually there's a several hour window about an hour before to an hour after low tide that's good. If you go after that, the waves usually are just hitting the rocks too hard and it can be dangerous to stand there. I always see tons of starfish (many different colors including orange, light blue, and purple), sea anemones (they are really fun to touch), mussels, crabs (little teeny black ones and bigger red ones), and even little fish swimming in the watery crags and crevices of the tide pool rocks. And I've even spotted dolphins and whales from this beach.

After an outing at Leo Carrillo, I always stop at this little food shack called Malibu Seafood, located just before you find yourself back at Malibu Canyon. It's totally no frills - you order food inside, wait for your number to be called, and find an open bench to sit down. My fave meals there are swordfish with rice pilaf and salad (the ranch is really good), fish and chips, clam chowder, or a pot of steamed clams in a nice broth.

Leo Carrillo State Park / Malibu photos by Lydia Marcus

For additional images from this series go to my Flickr page

Leo Carrillo State Park: 35000 Pacific Coast Hwy, Malibu, CA
Malibu Seafood: 25653 Pacific Coast Hwy, Malibu, CA 90265 (310) 456-3430

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