Home Explore & Stay Driving Guides See Sonoma’s Marine Life Up Close: Your Guide to Our Tidepools

See Sonoma’s Marine Life Up Close: Your Guide to Our Tidepools

Sonoma Tidepools

A tide pool can be said to be a miniature ecosystem—where colorful marine life lives among the rock basins filled with seawater. It’s a fascinating place to observe sea stars, crabs, anemones, and more up close. Remember to be cautious when exploring these tide pools. Low tide is best, when the pools are the most exposed and there is less risk of encountering dangerous waves. If you’re looking for some cool tide pools in Sonoma County, here are our recommendations.

Salt Point State Park, Jenner

There are many tide pools along the 6,000 acre Salt Point State Park. Check out the Gerstle Cove Marine Reserve. The visitor’s center is open on weekends from April to October so you can learn more about the protected marine life of the area.

Sonoma Coast State Park, Occidental

Shell Beach at Sonoma Coast State Park is a great place to explore the tide pools. During spring and summer, there are even sometimes docents who will teach you about the colorful flora and fauna.

Pinnacle Gulch, Bodega Bay

Located at the south end of Bodega Head, the Pinnacle Gulch Access Trail will lead you to a small beach. The limited access means fewer people—a serene place to observe interesting marine life.

Schoolhouse Beach, Bodega Bay

The beautiful little Schoolhouse Beach offers gorgeous views and some great tide pools to explore. Observe hermit crabs, sea slugs, sea stars, and more.