Bird Island Loop

Hit two beautiful sandy beaches and view the rugged coastline on the is easy one mile loop hike.
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Bird Island is not accessible, but the nesting Brandt's Cormorants can be seen spring and summer. View the jade green China Cove and sandy beaches of China and Gibson Beach. Hike beside wildflowers on the loop trail at Pelican point and glimpse Harbor Seals and Sea Otters below.

Trail Facts

  • Distance: 1.9



Location: 36.509544, -121.941795



Location: 36.507851, -121.940468

Arrive China Beach. Take a break at China beach the picturesque cove.


Location: 36.507751, -121.939423

R @ T.


Location: 36.507298, -121.941063

R @ Y. Arrive at Pelican Point where the trail here loops around with views of Bird Island, China Cove and the coastline beyond. Wildflowers frequently line the sandy trail.


Location: 36.507664, -121.939575

R @ T.

SPUR - On the return, take the trail straight and head down to Gibson Beach. Look for Harbor Seals and don't miss the creek at the far end of the beach.


Location: 36.507908, -121.940033

R @ Y. Turn right at the marked trail to Cypress Beach and then head down the steps the the sandy cove.

After visiting China Beach, continue right on the trail.

China Cove

Location: 36.508232, -121.940559

Trail Marker

Location: 36.507908, -121.93998

China Beach

Location: 36.508018, -121.940613

China Beach Staircase

Location: 36.507874, -121.94059

China Cove from Pelican Point

Location: 36.507771, -121.941605

Point Lobos Coastline

Location: 36.507927, -121.942032

Bird Island

Location: 36.507641, -121.942116

Rocky Arch

Location: 36.507229, -121.941734

Staircase to Gibson Beach

Location: 36.507694, -121.9394


Location: 36.506634, -121.938782


Location: 36.506268, -121.938438

Harbor Seal

Location: 36.506233, -121.938515

Gibson Beach Staircase

Location: 36.50732, -121.939339

China Cove

Location: 36.508209, -121.940399


Location: 36.508575, -121.940804

Harbor Seals

Location: 36.509415, -121.941856

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