Goff Cove in Laguna Beach

Goff Cove in Laguna Beach is a hidden gem that’s perfect for anyone looking to enjoy a mix of easy access, stunning scenery, and calm waters. Located just south of Christmas Cove and north of Middle Man Cove, Goff Cove stands out for its ability to balance accessibility with a sense of isolation. Protected from waves and wind by Goff Island, this beach is an ideal spot for young families​​.

Stairs Down to Goff Cove
Stairs Down to Goff Cove

The beach is notable for its south-facing position below a bluff west of the Montage Resort in Laguna Beach, California. One of its defining features is a tall, pyramid-shaped rock known as Goff Island, which helps keep the cove’s sand in place and links the island to the shore.

Goff Cove picture taken from the bluff
The picture of Goff Cove I took from the bluff

While you might see people climbing onto Goff Island, it’s important to be cautious as the surfaces can be slippery, and climbing is generally not advised due to safety concerns​​.

Goff Cove area
Goff Cove area

In terms of activities, Goff Cove offers a variety of options including sunbathing, tide pooling, scuba diving, snorkeling, whale watching, picnicking, and walking. For those interested in more active pursuits, body surfing, body boarding, and swimming are popular choices. The beach is also equipped with amenities like picnic tables, sea rocks, walking paths, benches, and tide pools​​​​.

The stairs to Goff Cove in laguna Beach
Entrance to Goff Cove in Laguna Beach

Access to Goff Cove is convenient, with a stairway from the paved walkway on the bluff or down a ramp at the end of the bluff. Parking is available along Pacific Coast Highway and near the Montage Resort, offering both free and paid options​​​​.

Goff Cove with a lookout on top of the cliff
Goff Cove with a lookout on top of the cliff

Goff Cove is managed by Montage Laguna Beach as part of their contract with the city, ensuring that it’s maintained clean at all times. Its location, contained by natural landmarks with rocks acting as boundaries, makes it a secure and comfortable environment, especially for parents with children. After a day at the beach, visitors can explore Treasure Island Park for additional amenities like showers and picnic spots, making it a perfect place to watch the sunset.

easy ramp to Goff Cove
Easy ramp to Goff Cove

My Experience Visiting Goff Cove

I recently visited Goff Cove and it was a great experience. I initially headed to Treasure Island Beach but found it too crowded, so I walked over to Goff Cove. The beach is accessible via stairs, but I noticed a ramp too, which is handy for anyone with a bike, cooler, or stroller. From the ramp, you can also get to Christmas Cove.

Goff Cove sign

Goff Cove, nestled between Christmas Cove and Treasure Island, features the prominent Goff Island (the big rock you see when getting down from the ramp). I managed to find parking on PCH near the Montage Resort, though it’s metered.

Goff Island tide pool area

There’s also underground parking at Treasure Island Beach, but it’s not free either. Previously, I’ve also parked across the street from Treasure Island Beach in a neighborhood, but that’s also paid parking.

Goff cove in Laguna Beach California

The beach itself is stunning, although the bathrooms and showers are up on the bluff. So you have to go up the stairs or ramp every time you need to use the bathroom.

rocky edge you can sit on at Goff Island beach
The rocky edge you can sit on at Goff Island Beach

I really enjoyed sitting on the rocks near Goff Island; it’s peaceful and not too crowded. The picnic tables are on the bluff and offer a beautiful ocean view. There are no picnic tables down on the beach.

Nice spot to sit on the rocks at Goff Island Beach
Nice spot to sit on the rocks at Goff Island Beach

While climbing Goff Island can be tempting, it’s risky unless you stick to the lower rocks during low tide to check out the tide pools. You may even see seals sunbathing on the rocks. Goff Island provides shade if you sit against it, which is nice if you don’t have a sun umbrella. Just be mindful that the beach has a rocky bottom.

Goff Island Beach sign with rules
Goff Island Beach sign with rules

To the left of Goff Cove, you’ll find a small cove called Middle Man Cove. Reaching this cove requires climbing over rocks, which can be challenging if you’re with kids or carrying a lot of beach gear.

This sign is right in front of the Goff Island (the big rock)
This sign is right in front of the Goff Island (the big rock)

While I didn’t see a lifeguard tower at Goff Cove, I noticed one at Christmas Cove.


Overall, Goff Cove in Laguna Beach is a truly wonderful spot for a beach visit. It combines the ease of access with a sense of peaceful seclusion. It’s ideal for families and anyone looking to enjoy the ocean without the crowds of more popular beaches. The presence of Goff Island adds to the cove’s charm, offering both scenic views and a natural boundary for safer beach exploration.

me on the beach
About the author

Hi, I'm Kat, the adventurous spirit behind BeachAndTrails, your guide to the hidden wonders of California and its neighboring regions. Having called California home for the last 15 years, I am thrilled to take you along on my journey and share the adventures that this incredible state has to offer.

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