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4.0
151 votes

Fort Bragg Glass Beach

Glass Beach Drive, Fort Bragg, California 95437 USA

Free
Free to Visit
  • Independent
  • Credit Cards Accepted
  • Pet Friendly
  • Wheelchair Accessible
  • Public Restrooms
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“a treasure trove of sea glass!”

Glass Beach is a beach in MacKerricher State Park near Fort Bragg, California that is abundant in sea glass created from years of dumping garbage into an area of coastline near the northern part of the town.

In the early 20th century, Fort Bragg residents threw their household garbage over cliffs owned by the Union Lumber Company onto what is now Glass Beach, discarding glass, appliances, and even vehicles. Locals referred to it as "The Dumps." Fires were lit to reduce the size of the trash pile.

The California State Water Resources Control Board and city leaders closed the area in 1967. Various cleanup programs were undertaken through the years to correct the damage. Over the next several decades the pounding waves cleaned the beach, by breaking down everything but glass and pottery and tumbling those into the small, smooth, colored pieces that cover Glass Beach.

The beach is now frequently visited by tourists. Collecting is not permitted on the park's beach, although sea glass can be found on other local beaches outside the park boundary. A Glass Festival is held annually on Memorial Day weekend.

Tourists visit Fort Bragg's glass beaches each day in the summer. Most collect some glass. Because of this and also because of natural factors (wave action is constantly grinding down the glass), the glass is slowly diminishing. There is currently a move to replenish the beaches with discarded glass.

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Reviewed by
josh.kopf

  • 1 Review
  • 9 Helpful
May 02, 2014

It's not celebrating garbage; it's celebrating that the earth, through all our attempts to pollute and destroy it, can turn out mistakes into something beautiful.

9 people found this review helpful

Reviewed by
FamilyRoadTrippers

  • 17 Reviews
  • 2 Helpful
June 19, 2017
Rated 5.0

We had such a fabulous time finding treasures. The path splits in two, be sure to take the one marked difficult route, not the easy route if you want to find lots of sea glass.

2 people found this review helpful

Reviewed by
james.t.sim1

  • 1 Review
  • 2 Helpful
January 29, 2014

harrison lake, there is a cabin the owners pasted on to their son years ago the locals made a pool beside it and many smaller hot tub size pools ( the spring water on the side of the hill is bubbling with natural hot springs ) its hard to find been there once it is up the mountain side you must travel across a fast running spring water (small river seasonal ) o ya you will not make it in winter to much snow wish I had more on it I had heard of it for a long time and finally made it one spring you drive up the middle of a fast running creek water was up to the bottom of the windows of the jeep i had borrowed. location right side of BC harrison lake turn before dear and hicks lake about an hour climb or drive best I can do thanks.

2 people found this review helpful

Reviewed by
Jake

  • Road Warrior
  • 13 Reviews
  • 29 Helpful
January 19, 2014

Just went here, beach looks nothing like that. Most people have taken the glass, its a nice beach but not like the pics of nothing but glass pabbles, its mainly just rocks, shells sand and some glass pebbles here and there.

1 person found this review helpful

Reviewed by
easytoguess

  • 1 Review
  • 1 Helpful
November 03, 2013

I was just there. It doesn't look like that. The beach is spectacular, but it does not look like that.

1 person found this review helpful

Reviewed by
dawnyb1995

  • 1 Review
  • 0 Helpful
October 29, 2013

We were there this past Summer and loved it. Can't wait to go back

1 person found this review helpful

Reviewed by
ashleywarnix

  • 1 Review
  • 0 Helpful
August 22, 2017
Rated 5.0

Easy enough for my kid to get to and dig around. Still plenty of big pieces to be found to take a pic with. Definitely worth a stop to stretch your legs.

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Reviewed by
vikkaschweer

  • 5 Reviews
  • 0 Helpful
July 17, 2017
Rated 3.0

This place was beautiful at one point, but when I went a couple years ago, there was no colorful glass left! So many people have taken the glass through the years that there isn't a whole lot remaining. The beach is nothing like the picture, it really breaks my heart. It's still lovely, but it's not what I'd hyped myself up for.

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  • 17 Reviews
  • 2 Helpful
May 21, 2017
Rated 5.0

This was the reason we came to the San Francisco area and was the highlight of our vacation!

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Reviewed by
Dec1anz

  • 2 Reviews
  • 0 Helpful
December 04, 2016
Rated 4.0

Might be better with a lower tide and not raining. Was still a nice trip up north to check it out. There's still glass in the small area we were able to wander around that wasn't roped off or covered in water. Just don't expect to see what most of the pictures show with glass of all colours everywhere.

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Fort Bragg Glass Beach

Glass Beach Drive
Fort Bragg, California
95437 USA

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  • Independent
  • Credit Cards Accepted
  • Pet Friendly
  • Wheelchair Accessible
  • Public Restrooms
  • Wifi
  • Free Parking

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