Glass Beach, Fort Bragg


What? :

Glass Beach is an ragged ocean beach section located at MacKerricher State Park near Fort Bragg, California. The peach got its name from the colorful glass pebbles covering the sandy coves.

The round shape glass particles created from years of dumping garbage into this coastline area of near the northern part of Fort Bragg.


Where? :

Located at the north west section of Fort Bragg. When driving highway 1 north, after the town small center, turn left (west) into W. Elm St., after short drive you will see the parking lot entrance on the left.

Google Map Link


When? :

Year round, in order to see the glass and be able to go down to the beach you need to come at low tide and when the ocean is calm and without waves.


Due note 1: It is illegal to collect glass at this state park. As a result of the waves and people taking the glasses it amount was diminished. It still has a lot, but nothing like it used to. Please do not take even “only few pebbles”.


Due note 2: The glass beach is close to the parking lot and there is a paved trail that leads to the cliff above the glass coves. Anyone can do this short walk; it is also accessible to strollers (not the lower beach).


Due note 3: The beach is very popular sunset destination and visited by tens of thousands of tourists yearly. It estimated that about 1,000 tourists visit Fort Bragg's glass beaches each day in the summer. Finding a parking spot may be challenging.


Due note 4: This is a great place to bring the kids, they can explore around but watch them when you are going down to the beaches near the water. You can also have longer hiked on the paved trail and enjoy this oceanfront park.


My thoughts:

We visit here at a warm easter day at 2022 with a calm sea, It was fun easy activity after eating ice-cream at the town center to come here, enjoy the sunset and explore the glass beaches and ocean coves.


How this glass covered beach was created:

In 1906, Fort Bragg residents established an official “cliff to water” dump site. Back then it was common practice and most water-fronted communities had water dump sites discarding glass, appliances, and even vehicles.

When the original dump site filled up in 1943, another dump site was created and when the second site reach max capacity in 1949 third site was created. This site was active until 1967 when all oceanfront dumping was closed.

Over the following years most of the large metal elements were removed. Over the years the pounding waves broke down the glass and pottery into the small, smooth, colored pieces, which cover Glass Beach. As a result of this rocky beach sections the glass was “trapped” in the protected coves and did not move into the ocean.

Following completion of the cleanup, the California Department of Parks purchased the 38-acre property adjacent to Glass Beach, and it was incorporated into MacKerricher State Park in October 2002.


The visit:

The best and simple way to visit the beaches is by arriving to Glass Beach Trailhead Parking.

Walk west and here you have several beach options to explore.

You can do north, and you will reach one beach, or you can go south on the main park trail and after short walk on the paved road you will see a bench and a “unofficial” path going down.

Before going down to the beach level assets the waves, do not go down if it looks like big waves are getting into the coves.

Climb down the cliff and you will arrive to the beach that is covered with pebbles mixed with glasses.


Once you finish exploring one beach you can go and visit the others.


Overall, we spend here almost an hour, enjoying the ocean view, exploring the different beaches. You can extend your visit here by walking south or north along the coastline.


A half a mile to the north of the parking lot you can visit the Pudding Creek Trestle bridge. Unfortunately, when visiting here I forgot about this nearby place and did not visit here, now I have a reason to visit here again.


The trail keeps going for 3 miles north in MacKerricher State Park all the way to the park main beach and campgrounds.




Additional Pictures:



  1. I was at glass beach last week Friday they and believe me there is no glass there the pictures they show the pictures of the glass beach 15 to 20 years ago all the tourists have pulled all the glass there's none left too far and feeling between you won't find any


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