Last October, I decided to take a spontaneous trip to see the Pirate Tower at Victoria Beach, which is off of the PCH just south of Laguna Beach. I have a large Southern California bucket list, and I was able to cross this place off! Check the timing of the tides beforehand though, it's only at low tide where you can walk around the tower and see all the tide pools. Also, if you're looking for that man made circular pool you've seen on Instagram, it's literally right next to the tower! But it only becomes a pool when the tides are higher, and the water can flow into it. At low tide, you can walk all around the tower and on the rocks surrounding it. Unfortunately you can't enter the tower, but you can peek in slightly through the door at the bottom.
For now, it says access is temporarily closed. When it does open up in the future, here's a few tips on getting there. On Google maps, either search for "Public stairway access to Victoria Beach" or put in 2705-2711 Victoria Dr, Laguna Beach, CA 92651 as your destination. Unfortunately, you can't park in the neighborhood next to the stairway, (if I recall correctly it's permit parking only?) so park only on the PCH / Highway 1. Parking can be slightly challenging depending on the time of day, but there is enough parking if you don't mind taking a little walk. From the PCH, it's a downhill walk to the stairway, and then the stairway is quite long as well--it's a lengthy several flights down to reach the sand! From the stairwell, start walking to the right side, and then you will immediately see the tower, which is thankfully close by. Keep in mind that there are no public restrooms on the beach, so plan accordingly!
The view from the northern side of the tower
My favorite thing about low tide is being able to see the surface of the rocks, which appear like the surface of an alien planet! Although I also imagine these tidepools are their own tiny universes unto themselves.
I mean, alien planet or what? I was lucky to arrive when it was bright and sunny, and later it turned overcast and cloudy, but it made for some interesting photos!
Haha, admin reveal! Hi, it's me Jenny, I'm a real person behind this brand. I do like to include my travels on my blog as well! And to be perfectly honest, yes it DID take more than several shots to get this selfie! Initially, my plan was to write at the beach, but I left my pen in the car, and I didn't feel like taking that uphill trek back as soon as I had arrived.
Here is where it starts to get slightly overcast, but it was the perfect time to get that #moodygram shot. Personally, I always love taking photos where there is a lone figure in the distance, partially to show scale, and partially because capturing an individual having their own personal experience is truly a special moment that I get to observe.
Another lone figure in the distance paddleboarding. The sun is nearly blotted out by the clouds, creating the ultimate #moodygram.
When it did get overcast, the clouds made the environment look more surreal than ever! Fun fact, you can walk in between these clumps of rocks and barnacles to get a closer look at everything.
Some of these larger flat rocks would create tiny waterfalls right back into the ocean!
After spending some time there and taking so many photos, I decided it was time to eat. Walking up those stairs and up a hill will certainly work up an appetite! Before I did all that, thankfully there is a little bit of phone service at the beach, I decided to look up what local Italian restaurants were nearby. I decided upon Oliver's Osteria, and the friendly staff was able to give me a last minute reservation. Even though I showed up in a t-shirt and ripped shorts, (p.s. it's a nicer restaurant, LOL!) the service was great, and the food and wine was pretty tasty! I ordered their chitarra cacio e pepe for dinner, with a side of roasted potatoes. (All the stairs and walking uphill worked up quite the appetite!) For dessert, I decided upon a place next to the restaurant called Another Kind Cafe, which had a large sign saying that they had Vietnamese iced coffee. Knowing that I had a long drive home, I certainly needed it! (It was delicious btw!)
On the way home, I decided to take the PCH from Laguna all the way up to Seal Beach. When I was in college, I used to spend late nights with friends at the Harbor House Cafe (which is open 24 hours) and then walk over to Seal Beach afterwards. Thankfully right in between Harbor House and the beach, there are public bathrooms available, just FYI! So I just sat on the beach for a while, and looked at the lights ahead.
Then, someone brought a huge flashlight and decided to shine it upon the ocean, which made for a great photo!
Overall, it was a lovely day for exploring, taking some beautiful photos, and eating great food! I'll be including more travel adventures on my blog, but it can also be seen on my Instagram feed as well! Follow me on Instagram @jennydayco, or search #adventuresofajewelrydesigner.
To the only person I invited to come with me on this day, if you ever see this--I wish you had come. I wish we had spent more time together.