Secluded Royale

Hike to secluded Coast Royale Beach in Orange County

Panoramic coastal views and a killer leg workout combine on this 2.7-mile (round-trip) out-and-back hike to secluded Coast Royale Beach. From the parking area, start on the Seaview Park Overlook Trail and hike to Aliso Peak Trail all the way to Valido Trail. The section from Aliso to Valido is steep, descending via a narrow singletrack, where eventually the trees part to reveal views of the Pacific Ocean and Laguna Beach.

Hikers going down stairs on a trail towards Coast Royale Beach in Orange County

Hiker going down stairs towards Coast Royale Beach in Orange County

Hikers going down to Coast Royale Beach in Orange County

Hike to a junction of multiple trails and take Valido Trail down sections of stairs until it ends at Valido Street, where you’ll head south until it dead-ends on West Street. Keep going west until you can cross the Pacific Coast Highway (PCH) at a crosswalk and head for the long stairway just north of the intersection.

Hikers head down Valido trail towards Coast Royale Beach in Orange County

Woman standing at a turquoise beach cove at Coast Royale Beach in Orange County

Hiker going down stairs surrounded by trees enroute to Coast Royale Beach in Orange County

The stairs lead to Coast Royale Beach. Views are mostly obstructed for the majority of the stairway descent, but once you make the final left turn, all the trees and buildings disappear, revealing a beach that feels reminiscent of Hawaii. The sparkling turquoise water and unique rock formations with tidepools make this beach a true hidden paradise (and an ideal place to relax weary legs before beginning the trek back).

Beach goers on the sand by the water at Coast Royale Beach in Orange County

Enjoy! Then return the way you came, taking frequent pauses to take in the view behind you and feel the ocean breeze. 

Hiker going up the trail overlooking the ocean at Aliso & Wood Canyons Wilderness Park in Orange County

The trailhead is located in Laguna Niguel at Seaview Park within Aliso & Wood Canyons Wilderness Park. Park is open from 7 a.m. to sunset. Trail may be closed for three days or more following rain. Free street parking available. From June 15 to September 10, no dogs allowed on the beach between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. Dogs must remain on leash at all times on the beach. Trail is dog friendly!

Story and photos by Natalie Bates, @wanderwithnatalie

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