Located Fort Bragg, this beach has no white sand to offer, but it has a shore-full of beautiful sea glass (which you’re not allowed to collect for preservation reasons).
Where did all the glass come from?
For about 60 years (1906-1967), the beach served as a dump as most local communities used to throw their trash from the cliffs into the water. Obviously, the trash contained a lot of glass or glass particles, which were eventually broken by rocks, worn with water, and washed up to shore. This is why most pieces of sea glass you see on the beach are white, green, or brown — common glass trash, like bottles or jars, were made from clear, green, or brown glass. If you stumble upon rare pieces of blue glass, odds are they came from old cosmetics or medicine containers. The rarest colors would be pink, lavender, and teal, and their source would probably be a perfume bottle.
How do I get there?
Fort Bragg is approximately halfway (3.5-hour drive) between San Francisco and Sacramento. It’s located at the end of Elm Street, which is also where you park. This is where the Glass Beach Trail starts, leading the way to the water.
Technically, there are three glass beaches. Glass Beach #3 is located within the MacKerricher State Park, which closes at 10 pm. This one also has the trails that lead to beaches #1 and #2. The temperatures at the beach are not exactly tropical (about 50-60 degrees), so the general recommendation is to leave your bikini at home and opt for some comfortable layers.