Print Page
Discover the Coast Communities Events Multimedia Did you know? About Map A person walks in solitude across the beach in California as the sun is setting over the Pacific Ocean.  The rocks and islands of the California Coastal National Monument sit just off-shore.

Discover the Coast @ Piedras Blancas

A large rock sits off the coast near a light house.

A respite from the modern world, complete with historic architecture and abundant natural life, awaits visitors to the California Coast at the Piedras Blancas Light Station Outstanding Natural Area.

Built in 1875 as a safety aid to mariners, the light station once cast a flashing, oil-flame light 25 miles out to sea, warning ship captains to steer clear of the white rocks, or Piedras Blancas in Spanish, that would mean certain doom for a vessel.

Today, the light station, its first order lens and light structure long ago removed, casts a beacon to travelers on scenic California Highway 1.  It continues to provide a navigational aid to ship traffic, as well.  Visits to the light station are by guided tour only, conducted by the Bureau of Land Management, its volunteers and partners.

Insider Tips


Take a guided tour of the Piedras Blancas Light Station, featuring the historic lighthouse, support buildings, wildlife, plants, and spectacular coastal scenery long an easy 1/2 mile trail. 


Visit the nearby community of Cambria to see the first order Fresnel lens that once stood on the top of the lighthouse.  The lens, lantern room, and upper portion of the tower were removed in 1949 due to a large crack about 25 feet down from the top of the lighthouse. The crack was the result of an earthquake and the tower could not safely support the lantern room. 


Bring your binoculars and view the Pacific gray whale's annual migration from December through April.

Local Weather Conditions

Weather symbols for sun, rain, tornado, couds, lightening, and snow.

Piedras Blancas Light Station Hearst Castle/San Simeon State Historical Monument San Simeon Map of the Piedras Blancas Light Station and surrounding area.

Discover the Coast @ Piedras Blancas


Guided Tours, September 1st - June 14th
   Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays
Guided Tours, June 15th - August 31st
    Monday through Saturday
Fee:  $10 for adults, $5 ages 6-17, Free for children 5 and under

Join us for a two-hour tour of the historic lighthouse, support buildings, wildlife, plants, and while you are there, enjoy spectacular coastal scenery.  The trail is an easy 1/2 mile walk.  Meet at the former Piedras Blancas Motel located 1.5 miles north of the light station at 9:45 am.  Reservations are not required. 

Discover the Coast


California Coastal Cleanup Day
International Coastal Cleanup Day
September 20, 2014

The California Coastal Commission is proud to announce that the 30th Annual California Coastal Cleanup Day, the state's largest volunteer event, will take place on Saturday, September 20th, 2014, from 9am to noon. The Cleanup is expected to draw tens of thousands of volunteers who, at more than 850 locations throughout California, will help remove tons of trash that have accumulated on California's beaches and inland shorelines.

Join local communities for coastal clean up efforts to improve our ocean and waterways.  Find a site near you.

For those who cannot attend Coastal Cleanup Day on September 20th this year, the Coastal Commission maintains a calendar of events taking place during the three weeks following the Cleanup, known as COASTWEEKS. Or learn more about a cleanup to record and remove potential Japan tsunami debris.

California Coastal Cleanup Day 2014 PSA

Discover the Coast


September 20 - October 12, 2014

COASTWEEKS is an annual celebration of our coastal and water resources, taking place during the three weeks following the 30th California Coastal Cleanup Day on Septemer 20.

See a list of events organized by date. 

See a list of events organized by county.

Discover the Coast


California Coastal National Monument 14th Anniversary
January 11, 2015

Join local communities for a fun time celebrating the 14th Anniversary of the California Coastal National Monument.

Bureau of Land Management
California Coastal National Monument
20 Hamilton Court
Hollister, CA 95023-2535
Phone: (831) 630-5006
fax: (831) 630-5055
Contact us by e-mail

Last updated: 09-11-2014