Last Updated on December 30, 2022

California is without doubt one of the best places in America for sand surfing. What makes this state so great for sand sports is that you can practice sandboarding both on desert and beach locations, all year round.

There are plenty of opportunities for sandboarding the inland sand dunes of the Mojave Desert, but Southern California (SoCal) is where all the beach fun is.

The Monterey county is home to some of the state’s tallest dunes and must-see destinations for sand surfing and related activities.

Going further south, the popular Oceano Dunes Recreation Area near Pismo Beach is today one of the best sandboarding destinations in the country.

As part of the Amazon Associate and eBay partner network programmes, we earn from qualifying purchases.

Sandboarding Crater Beach, Sand City
The Pit near Crater Beach in Sand City

Sandboarding in Monterey

Marina State Beach and Dunes Preserve

Marina State Beach should be the first stop in your SoCal’s sandboarding trip. Located only a few miles north of Monterey, the beach boasts some of California’s tallest sand dunes as well as smaller, beginner-friendlier slopes.

Both sandboarding and sand sledding can be practiced and it’s not uncommon to see families with small kids.

Seaside & Sand City

These two towns share their beach and sand dunes. Sand City has a vibrant artist community and is particularly memorable for its sand sculptures.

North of Sand City beach you can find a natural sand depression, “The Crater“, which also happens to be a clothing-optional area.

The perimeter of the Crater is formed by dunes with varying steepness where sandboarding and sand sledding can be practiced.

Sandboarding Oceano Dunes, Pismo Beach
Oceano Sand Dunes near Pismo Beach. Photo courtesy of “Mike” Michael L. Baird.

Sandboarding at Oceano Dunes – Pismo Beach

Near Pismo Beach you can find the Oceano Dunes State Vehicular Recreation Area, where sand duning is widely practiced.

The sand dunes are some of the most extensive in the country, surrounded by the town of Oceano on one side, and the actual ocean on the other, yet because of their size it’s easy to feel like you are in a desert.

While you easily can rent a sandbuggy or offroad vehicle in both Oceano and Pismo Beach, it’s better if you bring your own sandboard.

Sandboarding in Palm Springs

You can slide on sand dunes near Palm Springs on the way to White Water and across the Palm Desert.

You will need to get your own sandboard as there are no rental stores available in the area, but you can find plenty of off-road vehicle and quad rentals if that’s your thing.

Sandboards for Sale

Slip Face Sandboards Diamondback Board
Slip Face Sandboards’
Diamond Back Terrain Sandboard
– 9 ply maple veneer deck
– High pressure laminate base, high gloss
– Dakine adjustable foot straps
– Slip Face Sandboards multi-positionable foot pads
– Swallow tail design

Slip Face Sandboard Kestrel WingTail
Slip Face Sandboards’
Kestrel Wing 127
– 9 ply maple veneer deck
– Low friction base
– Dakine adjustable foot straps
– Slip Face Sandboards multi-positionable foot pads
– Swallow tail design

Browse more sandboards and sandsleds

Sandboarding Point Mugu Malibu
PCH Sand Hill near Point Mugu, Photo Courtesy of Jacob Montgomery

Sand sledding in Los Angeles

Point Mugu is Malibu is the most noticeable sandboarding spot in Los Angeles. On top of that, there are a few beaches where you can practice sand sledding on artificial sand hills and berms during winter.

The dunes on these beaches are generally not very steep and especially loved by children, but can be a lot of fun for the older ones as well.

Malibu Sand Dunes

Point Mugu, Malibu, CA

The Point Mugu Sand Dunes make an excellent spot for sandboarding and sand sledding, where you can also enjoy stunning views the Malibu sunset.

There is a huge sand dune located on the east end of Thornhill Broome Beach. The slope ends very close to the highway, but the ride is slow and will spare you a trip back to your car. This is one of the few spots in L.A. where you can sand sled year-round and not only during winter season.

Zuma Beach, Malibu, CA

Seasonal artificial sand berms are erected at Zuma Beach after Thanksgiving as a protection from winter storms and floods, while also becoming accessible for sand sledding.

L.A. Sand Dunes

Venice Beach – Los Angeles

Possibly the most popular spot for sand sledding in LA, a vast sand berm located south of the Venice Beach Pier is constructed every year at the end of October until spring.

Dockweiler State Beach – Los Angeles

Not too far from the Los Angeles International Airport, the Dockweiler State Beach is one of the few locations in California with an oceanfront RV park. It is a popular beach to make bonfires, but you can enjoy winter sand sledding there as well.

Hermosa Beach – Los Angeles

Another beach where artificial sand dunes are built in winter and are publicly accessible for sand sledding. Hermosa Beach is located in the outskirts of Los Angeles and its slopes are not very steep, making them ideal for young kids.

Sandsleds for Sale

Slippery Racer
Downhill Falcon
Foam Toboggan

Flexible Flyer Metal Snow Disc Saucer Sled. Steel Sand Slider
Flexible Flyer
Steel Sand Slider
Browse more sleds for desert and beach dunes

Next: Sandboarding in California’s Mojave Desert

USA Sandboarding Map logo icon

Your n°1 source of information on the world of sandsports and desert adventure travel. Our articles are the result of extensive research, personal experience, and knowledge-sharing within the global sandboarding community.