California sunsets are hard to beat, and San Diego has the best spots for watching the sun disappear behind the Pacific. America’s Finest City is sunny most days, so it’s easy to catch the sky transforming at dusk. With the backdrop of impressive mountains, expansive coastline and rugged sea cliffs, this is truly the ideal location for watching Mother Nature at work.
Indulge Your Senses at Sunset Cliffs
This area is the most mesmerizing when it comes to watching the sun descend. While walking the cliffside trails, you can smell the ocean air, listen to the waves crashing and see the sunlight reflecting in the tide pools. If you’re viewing the side of the cliffs, you’ll see the jagged sandstone change to a gorgeous golden tone as the sun drops.
What makes this area so mystical is the swirl of color in the ocean, land and sky. The changing light above mixed with the mirror-like reflection below creates visual drama that is hard to find elsewhere. During sundown, it’s like the sun is painting a picture on the endless canvas of sky, and the sea is trying to copy the masterpiece.
Capture the Stunning Views in La Jolla
La Jolla is beloved because of its distinctive vintage beauty. The curved shoreline and oceanside bluffs enhance the view at dusk. In La Jolla Cove, palm trees provide spectacular silhouettes against the midnight blue, scarlet and tangerine shades of twilight. If you’re lucky, you may see some seals playing in the water while you enjoy the scenery.
Windansea Beach and Scripps Pier are also great for unobstructed sunset viewing. There is a variety of settings, so you can take dozens of interesting photos. At Windansea, the famed palm-covered surf shack in the center of the beach is a charming element to include in your shots. Scripps Pier is also the perfect prop because you can capture sunbeams between the wooden pillars.
Look for the Legendary Mission Beach Green Flash
Although the sun setting at Mission Beach is always striking, the sky is particularly vibrant during the final moments of sunset. When the sun can still be seen partially on the horizon, it occasionally changes from red or orange to an intense emerald. This only lasts for a couple seconds, but the phenomenon is breathtaking.
Mission Beach isn’t the only seaside area for observing the green flash, and most beaches provide a unique stage for the usual evening light show. The coastline is the most picturesque because you can enjoy panoramic views of sky and sea. At certain beaches, you can also see the sun glowing in the water that rests on the sand. This creates another layer of color that is dazzling in photos.
Get the Most from Your Experience
You don’t need to stand at the edge of a cliff or sit in sand to enjoy a San Diego sunset. There are countless places to maximize the fun level. You can watch the sun dip below the horizon while picnicking at Balboa Park, or you may prefer cruising the bay in a Venetian gondola. If you’re looking for some adventure, rent a kayak or paddleboard and coast along the Pacific Ocean as the sky shimmers.
When the sun sets in San Diego, the landscape transforms into a multicolored scenic wonderland. Not everyone is fortunate enough to witness the magic, so we recommend taking plenty of photographs to share on Twitter. Your stories and your pictures of the remarkable skyline may prompt other families, partners and friends to make memories of their own.
Mission Valley Resort