Rocko, Joy and I explored Moonstone Beach in Cambria after he got out of school. We timed it for a negative low tide following the huge waves of a king tide. We hoped there would be good rockhounding. Rocko told Joy that we were hunting for treasure: gems and buried pirate treasure.
It's a long drive, but beautiful. The hills were green from the last rain. Baby cows were everywhere. As you drive into Cambria, it turns into Monterey pine forest from the open grassland south.
Armed with our buckets (the kids had their shovels), we parked at Shamel Park and walked in. We began finding cool stones for our tumbler immediately. But then the kids were distracted by the sand, then by Santa Rosa Creek that emerges there (full of ducks and surrounded by killdeer and snowy plovers), then by the driftwood structures visitors had built, and then by the tide pools.
You can't go wrong with a visit here. It's stunning, quiet, and a magical adventure. We played in the lovely Shamel Park playground until it was too dark to see.
Apparently, the stones aren't truly moonstones; instead they are white agate, called chalcedony. Still beautiful. We found beach glass, jade, agates, and jasper for our tumbler.
Are you looking for adventures nearby? Check out this list!