Robert W. Crown Memorial State Beach

Notice
There is no entry into the Elsie Roemer Bird Sanctuary to facilitate ongoing restoration work, until further notice.
Water Quality
Swim Beach is open |  Conditions [PDF] |  Monitoring Program

Park Info

Address
Eighth Street and Otis Drive, Alameda, CA

Park Entrances
> Crab Cove North Beach
> Crown Memorial South Beach

Phone Numbers
(510) 544-3175
Toll Free: 888-EBPARKS (888-327-2757), option 3, extension 4522

Park Hours
Open between 5am and 10pm unless otherwise posted or permitted

Swim Hours & Fees
NOTICE:
If parking and or swim capacity is reached, entrance gates may close for the day.
Swim Facilities Schedule

Fees
Parking Fee: $5 per vehicle when kiosk is attended; $4 per trailered vehicle. Buses: $25/per bus.
Dog Fee:  $2 per dog. Guide/service dogs free; no dogs allowed on beach.
Boating: Boating, kayaking & sailing fees

Maps
> Trail Map
> PDF Map
> Google Map
> Transit & Trails

Photos
> Goolge

Boat Launch
See the Boating/Sailing page

Crown Beach, Robert W. Crown Memorial

About The Park

Robert W. Crown Beach is operated by the Park District under a cooperative agreement with the State of California and City of Alameda. It is named in memory of State Assemblyman Robert W. Crown, who had campaigned for its preservation as public parkland. In 2013, a $5.7 million project that pumped 82,600 cubic yards of sand restored the beach and dune system to its 1987 footprint. Crown Memorial State Beach Sand Project

The showpiece of the park is its 2.5-mile beach, with sand dunes bordering a bicycle trail. The beach is a great achievement of landscaping and engineering. After wind and water action had eroded the beach dangerously, it was restored in early 1982 with sand from San Francisco Bay, pumped ashore by pipeline from a barge. More sand has been added since then, and groins have been constructed to keep it in place.

History

From the 1880s until the outbreak of World War II, Alameda Beach was renowned as an amusement center, the largest beach on San Francisco Bay.

Known for its beautiful sands and warm waters, the beach was a popular day-trip destination for residents from throughout the region. It earned the name "Coney Island of the West," and bathing spas competed for patronage by staging concerts, balloon ascents, carnival rides, baseball games, prize fights, and other publicity stunts.

The carnival is over, but the beautiful beach is back, bordered by lawns and picnic grounds. Some of the area's colorful past is preserved in exhibits at the park's Crab Cove Visitor Center.

Our "Memory Lane" self-guided trail leads you from the time California Indians lived in the area through the Victorian era and military history.  The tour is available on your mobile device or pick up a brochure in the visitor center.

Park Features

The natural history of Crown is emphasized in two locations. Elsie Roemer Bird Sanctuary at the east end harbors aquatic birds and other salt marsh creatures. Crab Cove at the north end is a marine reserve where all plant and animal life is protected.

Notice: There is currently no entry into the Elsie Roemer Bird Sanctuary to facilitate ongoing restoration work
.

Crab Cove Visitor Center, located on McKay Avenue within Crown Beach, contains exhibits and aquaria highlighting flora and fauna of San Francisco Bay and other marine areas. To read more about the visitor center, visit the Crab Cove Visitor Center page.

There are picnic areas nearby; alcoholic beverages are prohibited except with a permit at a reservable picnic area. There is a seasonal parking fee.

Encinal Beach and Trail are about a half mile west of Crab Cove. The beach is a conditionally designated official San Francisco Bay Water Trail site.

Park Activities

Swimming

The water is warm and shallow at Crown Beach. At the west end of the beach is a bathhouse with changing rooms. Swimming is permitted during park hours year round. No lifeguards are on duty. 

Swim Facilities Capacity Notice
Once the swim facility capacity is reached, there will be no new entries allowed for the remainder of the day (or at the discretion of the Park Supervisor), for the safety of the public. Please take this into consideration when planning your visit.

Boating

There is no boat launch facility. Only sailboards, kayaks, and car-top inflatables are permitted at Crown Beach. For more information and a schedule of fees, see our Boating and Sailing page. Crown Beach is an official San Francisco Bay Water Trail site. Kayaking, Paddleboarding, kite surfing are popular non-motorized activities at this location.

Boardsports

Crown Beach Wind Surfer

Crown Beach is popular with windsurfers and kiteboarders. Rental equipment and lessons are available on spring weekends and during the summer. Call (415) 385-1224 for information. 

Picnicking

Next to the bathhouse are picnic tables, barbecue pits and lots of lawn area for ball games. Some picnic areas are reservable; call 1-888-EBPARKS (1-888-327-2757), press option 2 to make a reservation.

Fishing

Fishing is allowed from shore subject to State Fish and Game regulations. Persons 16 years and older must have a California State Fishing License. No Park District Fishing Access Permit is required. 

Dogs

Dogs are not permitted on the beach. Dogs are allowed only on lawn areas and along the paved pathways. Dogs must be on a leash (six-foot maximum) and under control at all times. Please clean up after your dog. 

Naturalist-Guided Programs

Naturalist-guided programs for school groups and other organized groups are available in the Crab Cove Visitor Center Wednesday through Friday by advance reservation. Call 1-888-327-2757, x3187 for information. To browse programs online, visit EBParks.org/Register

Special Events

An annual crowd-pleasing tradition at Crown is the Sand Castle and Sand Sculpture Contest, held in front of the bathhouse on a low-tide Saturday morning in June. Open to all ages, the contest attracts hundreds of participants and spectators. High tide destroys the sand creations, but winners receive trophies and ribbons as mementos of their artistry.

Concerts at the Cove offer incredible free music and fun! Extended hours at the Visitor Center plus family activities on the deck and beautiful views of San Francisco Bay make our concerts extra special. Bring your blanket or lawn chair; food and beverages available for purchase. For information, see the Special Events page.

Park Video

ADA accessibility iconPark Accessibility

The following facilities are accessible to wheelchair users: Nepture reservable picnic area, Crolls Garden reservable picnic area, Rocky Shoreline Tide Ramp, Crab Cove Visitor Center, and the bathhouse.

Wheelchair accessible restrooms, drinking fountains, parking, and paved trails are also available.

Beach wheelchairs, intended to provide a means for wheelchair users to travel across the beach, are available free of charge on a first-come, first-served basis. They require an assistant to push and are not intended to enter the water. To arrange for use of a chair, call the Crab Cove Visitors Center at (510) 544-3187, or the Crown Beach park office at (888) 327-2757, option 3, ext. 4522. Arrangements will be made to bring the chair out to the beach. It takes approximately 15 minutes to prepare the chair. Staff will give a brief orientation to the chair and arrange a time for the chair to be returned.

To Reach The Park

From San Francisco, take the Bay Bridge to I-580 east and I-980 (downtown Oakland). Exit I-980 at 11th/12th Streets, go through several traffic lights and make a left onto 5th Street. This will take you to Broadway and the Oakland/Alameda Tube. Once through the Tube, you'll be on Webster Street. Webster will dead end at Central Avenue. Turn left onto Central and right onto Eighth Street to reach the Crown Beach entrance. Turn right on Central then turn left on McKay Ave to reach the Crab Cove entrance.

Transit & Trails: Crown Memorial State Beach (transit, biking, and walking directions)

Trail Map

Click the map image below to see an enlarged version.

Open Full Size Image

Events:

Saturday, November 16, 2019

10:30 AM  -  11:30 AM
Nature Party-Bay Critters | Crown Beach | Alameda

10:30 AM  -  11:30 AM
Nature Party-Reptiles | Crown Beach | Alameda

10:30 AM  -  11:30 AM
Songs And Stories By The Shore | Crown Beach | Alameda

2:00 PM  -  3:00 PM
Family Nature Fun- Make It Rain | Crown Beach | Alameda

3:00 PM  -  3:30 PM
Fish Feeding Time - 11/16/19 | Crown Beach | Alameda

Sunday, November 17, 2019

11:30 AM  -  12:00 PM
Storytime And Nature Fun | Crown Beach | Alameda

2:00 PM  -  3:00 PM
Family Nature Fun- Make It Rain | Crown Beach | Alameda

3:00 PM  -  3:30 PM
Fish Feeding Time - 11/17/19 | Crown Beach | Alameda

Thursday, November 21, 2019

10:00 AM  -  12:00 PM
Third Thursdays In The Garden | Crown Beach | Alameda

1:00 PM  -  3:00 PM
Third Thursdays In The Garden | Crown Beach | Alameda

Saturday, November 23, 2019

2:00 PM  -  3:00 PM
Family Nature Fun- Hibernation & Migration | Crown Beach | Alameda

3:00 PM  -  3:30 PM
Fish Feeding Time - 11/23/19 | Crown Beach | Alameda

Sunday, November 24, 2019

10:00 AM  -  12:00 PM
Playful Nature Sculpting | Crown Beach | Alameda

11:30 AM  -  12:00 PM
Storytime And Nature Fun | Crown Beach | Alameda

2:00 PM  -  3:00 PM
Family Nature Fun- Hibernation & Migration | Crown Beach | Alameda

3:00 PM  -  3:30 PM
Fish Feeding Time - 11/24/19 | Crown Beach | Alameda

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

10:30 AM  -  11:45 AM
Sea Squirts: Land Mammals | Crown Beach | Alameda

Friday, November 29, 2019

10:00 AM  -  4:00 PM
Post Thanksgiving Holiday Fun | Crown Beach | Alameda

Saturday, November 30, 2019

10:00 AM  -  11:30 AM
Thankful For The Bay Beach Cleanup | Crown Beach | Alameda

2:00 PM  -  3:00 PM
Family Nature Fun- Turkey Time | Crown Beach | Alameda

3:00 PM  -  3:30 PM
Fish Feeding Time - 11/30/19 | Crown Beach | Alameda

Sunday, December 1, 2019

11:30 AM  -  12:00 PM
Storytime And Nature Fun | Crown Beach | Alameda

2:00 PM  -  3:00 PM
Family Nature Fun- Turkey Time | Crown Beach | Alameda

3:00 PM  -  3:30 PM
Fish Feeding Time - 12/01/19 | Crown Beach | Alameda

3:00 PM  -  3:30 PM
Fish Feeding Time - 12/1/19 | Crown Beach | Alameda

Saturday, December 7, 2019

2:00 PM  -  3:00 PM
Family Nature Fun- Amazing Amphibians | Crown Beach | Alameda

3:00 PM  -  3:30 PM
Fish Feeding Time - 12/07/19 | Crown Beach | Alameda

Sunday, December 8, 2019

11:30 AM  -  12:00 PM
Storytime And Nature Fun | Crown Beach | Alameda

2:00 PM  -  3:00 PM
Family Nature Fun- Amazing Amphibians | Crown Beach | Alameda

3:00 PM  -  3:30 PM
Fish Feeding Time - 12/08/19 | Crown Beach | Alameda

Tuesday, December 10, 2019

10:30 AM  -  11:45 AM
Sea Squirts: Fur, Feathers and Scales | Crown Beach | Alameda

Saturday, December 14, 2019

10:30 AM  -  11:30 AM
Nature Party-Bay Critters | Crown Beach | Alameda

10:30 AM  -  11:30 AM
Nature Party-Reptiles | Crown Beach | Alameda

2:00 PM  -  3:00 PM
Family Nature Fun- Let It Snow | Crown Beach | Alameda

3:00 PM  -  3:30 PM
Fish Feeding Time - 12/14/19 | Crown Beach | Alameda

Sunday, December 15, 2019

11:30 AM  -  12:00 PM
Storytime And Nature Fun | Crown Beach | Alameda

12:00 PM  -  2:00 PM
Crafting For Adults And Teens | Crown Beach | Alameda

2:00 PM  -  3:00 PM
Family Nature Fun- Let It Snow | Crown Beach | Alameda

3:00 PM  -  3:30 PM
Fish Feeding Time - 12/15/19 | Crown Beach | Alameda

Wednesday, December 18, 2019

9:00 AM  -  11:00 AM
Birdwalk By The Bay | Crown Beach | Alameda

Thursday, December 19, 2019

10:00 AM  -  12:00 PM
Third Thursdays In The Garden | Crown Beach | Alameda

1:00 PM  -  3:00 PM
Third Thursdays In The Garden | Crown Beach | Alameda

Saturday, December 21, 2019

2:00 PM  -  3:00 PM
Family Nature Fun- Nature Crafts | Crown Beach | Alameda

3:00 PM  -  3:30 PM
Fish Feeding Time - 12/21/19 | Crown Beach | Alameda

Sunday, December 22, 2019

11:30 AM  -  12:00 PM
Storytime And Nature Fun | Crown Beach | Alameda

12:00 PM  -  2:00 PM
Holiday Wrapping | Crown Beach | Alameda

2:00 PM  -  3:00 PM
Family Nature Fun- Nature Crafts | Crown Beach | Alameda

3:00 PM  -  3:30 PM
Fish Feeding Time - 12/22/19 | Crown Beach | Alameda

Thursday, December 26, 2019

2:30 AM  -  4:00 AM
Birding For Kids | Crown Beach | Alameda

Saturday, December 28, 2019

10:30 AM  -  12:30 PM
Almost New Years Resolution: Weed Warriors Unite! | Crown Beach | Alameda

2:00 PM  -  3:00 PM
Family Nature Fun- New Year's Beach Clean-Up | Crown Beach | Alameda

3:00 PM  -  3:30 PM
Fish Feeding Time - 12/28/19 | Crown Beach | Alameda

Sunday, December 29, 2019

11:30 AM  -  12:00 PM
Storytime And Nature Fun | Crown Beach | Alameda

2:00 PM  -  3:00 PM
Family Nature Fun- New Year's Beach Clean-Up | Crown Beach | Alameda

3:00 PM  -  3:30 PM
Fish Feeding Time - 12/29/19 | Crown Beach | Alameda

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