OverviewThis guide written by: Dustin Meyer
Crescent Bay is a very beautiful beach in general, getting its name from its crescent shape. It's very picturesque, with Laguna Beach's signature fancy beach houses overlooking the immediate area. It's very close to downtown Laguna Beach, and is an excellent beach for snorkeling/diving in additional to all of the other typical beach activities.
As with most of the beaches along Laguna Beach this beach is a protected beach, so you'll have to abide by the rules posted at the entry sites.
Parking: No Parking Lot, Free and Metered Street Parking Available
Entry: Two Entries - North Entry Stairs, South Entry Stairs/Ramp
Facilities: Restrooms and Showers
Lifeguard: There are a few lifeguard stations along the length of the beach
FeaturesThere are good snorkeling spots at Crescent Bay both on the north side and the south side of the beach. In the middle it's pretty much just smooth sand with no other features (maybe a ray or two).
The south side has pretty much one large rock that juts quite a ways out away from shore. The further out along this rock you go, the more likely you are to get to the giant kelp beds that lie between Crescent Bay and Shaw's Cove, the next beach south.
The north side has the majority of the features for this beach. There are tidepools on this side, and it's the rocky area out in front of these tidepools that provides the underwater topography that really makes Crescent Bay an interesting snorkeling site. This reef area extends out about 100 yards from shore or more at its furtherst point. The seafloor is pretty deep when you get out that far, maybe 30-40 feet. There is also an area in the middle of the reef that kind of forms a small underwater valley. This area can be really cool when the swell is low.
Both the north and the south side have many Garibaldi, Big Sea Stars, Sea Urchins, Rockfish, Sandbass, Perch and Eelgrass. I have seen a few rays and small leopard sharks here as well.
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ParkingAs with many of the smaller beaches in Laguna Beach, parking can be a bit of a hassle. There is no lot, and no metered parking directly along the streets closest to this beach. Your best bet is to get there early and/or hope to find a parallel parking spot in front of someone's house. There are some metered spots as you get closer to PCH.
Disclaimer: You shall assume all risks associated with snorkeling at any of the locations listed on this website. The articles and forecasts that appear on this site are intended to be for informational purposes only. It is up to you and/or the lifeguards present at the snorkeling locations to make the ultimate decisions regarding your safety. Follow all posted rules at any site that you visit.