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San Diego: The Ultimate SUP Destination

Photo: Shutterstock Photo: Shutterstock

SAN DIEGO, California - With constant sunshine, ocean views, and an abundance of flat-water locales, San Diego is a fantastic SUP city. Below are the best places to go paddle boarding in San Diego - and where to rent a board (if needed) for the adventure.

1. Coronado Tidelands Park

If you love dreamy city views, Coronado Tidelands Park is the place to be. This low-key island by the San Diego coast offers a sweeping look at the city skyline. Here, you’ll get the chance to paddle among San Diego’s most treasured landmarks, with close-up views of the Coronado Bridge, Petco Park baseball stadium, and other local fixtures. Coronado Tidelands Park is known for its calm waters. It’s ideal for paddling with your kids or with a large group, and at just a 5-minute drive from central San Diego, you can’t beat the location.

Where To Rent A SUP: San Diego Bay Adventures

coronado islandPhoto: Shutterstock

2. La Jolla Cove

La Jolla Cove is a literal paradise, and it’s got the serene waters and picturesque atmosphere to prove it. As an ecological reserve, the cove serves as a peaceful respite for nature lovers. If you keep your eyes peeled, you’ll get the chance to gawk at critters like sea lions, sea turtles, and jellyfish. (If there were ever a time to bring your camera onboard your SUP, this is it!) If you’re a SUP beginner, you can follow the cove’s low-key kayaking routes. If you’re more experienced, you’ll want to paddle your way through the caves for a closer look at the cove’s most well-known features.

Where To Rent A SUP: Surf Diva

la jolla covePhoto: Shutterstock

3. Mission Bay

Anyone who is new to the city should make a beeline for Mission Bay, because it provides an excellent feel for the pulse of San Diego. Mission Bay is a dream destination for SUP yogis, SUP fishing enthusiasts, and of course, all around SUP fans. It offers the type of paddle boarding San Diego is known for: delightfully low winds and calm waters, with plenty of launch spots. With such ideal conditions, the bay does get crowded, so get there early in the morning. It’s only 10 minutes from downtown San Diego, and perhaps even better, it’s only 15 minutes from the airport. Did someone call for a SUP layover?

Where To Rent A SUP: Bliss Paddle Yoga, Mission Bay Aquatic Center

mission bay san diegoPhoto: Supconnect

4. Shelter Island Shoreline Park

SUP beginners, take note: Shelter Island is your personal haven. With calm, flat waters, you’ll have plenty of space to hone your skills. The best part of Shelter Island Shoreline Park, though, is the scenery. You’ll have the chance to take in the glimmering San Diego cityscape from afar, along with far-reaching views of ocean waves. This is an ideal location to catch a trademark California sunset, so make sure you stick around the beach to watch.

Where To Rent A SUP: OEX Point Loma

shelter island san diegoPhoto: Shutterstock

5. Del Mar Beach (Dog Beach)

Del Mar Beach is one of the only beaches in town to welcome dogs - hence its nickname, Dog Beach. When you’re here, you can’t help but smile, because there’s nothing like watching puppies frolicking along the sand to lift your mood. If you’re a pet parent yourself, Del Mar Beach is the ideal place to take your dog out on your SUP. You’ll find a mix of calmer waters and a fast-paced river mouth, so there’s a difficulty level for everyone from SUP beginners to SUP surfers.

Where To Rent A SUP: Del Mar Surf Rentals 

del mar dog beachPhoto: Shutterstock

What are you waiting for? Go out and get on a SUP! To check out even more places to SUP in SD, check out GILI’s paddle boarding San Diego article.

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Last modified onWednesday, 26 February 2020 15:25
Jay Regan

Jay has been surfing and paddling for over 5 years. When he's not dreaming up new stuff at GILI, he's writing articles about paddling, out paddling, or often traveling.

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San Diego